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Behold Thy Mother: Getting to Know the Blessed Virgin Mary (Self-Paced)


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Full course description

Behold Thy Mother: Getting to Know the Blessed Virgin Mary






Dr. Robert Fastiggi, Bishop Kevin M. Britt Chair of Dogmatic Theology and Christology,
Sacred Heart Major Seminary


Teaching Assistants

Melissa Pordon


Course Description

Mother of God, Queen of Heaven, Help of Christians, Star of the Sea . . . . The Blessed Virgin Mary goes by many titles. Why do Catholics love her so? And how can we foster our relationship with Mary and learn to imitate her virtues?


In this short online course, Dr. Robert Fastiggi, Bishop Kevin M. Britt Chair of Dogmatic Theology and Christology, will offer reflections on the beautiful teachings of our Catholic faith about Mary: her role as Mother of God, her Perpetual Virginity, her Immaculate Conception, and her Assumption into Heaven. But Mary is not just a figure of the past. Sacred Heart Major Seminary faculty will also introduce us to Mary’s apparitions to people living in very different times and places, such as Lourdes, France; Fatima, Portugal; Guadalupe, Mexico; and Kibeho, Rwanda. Come and join us this Advent as we get to know the Blessed Virgin Mary!


This course is not intended to be academically strenuous but to provide a shallow-entry point for those who have busy lives and need flexibility. This course is designed for personal enrichment and does not count towards any academic credit at Sacred Heart Major Seminary or for any certification in the Archdiocese of Detroit. 




For questions about course content contact the instructor/teaching assistants using the Inbox on the red menu bar on the left side of your online course page. 

For technical support see the Tech Support guide in the Welcome module of the course.



Required Readings:

No required texts for this course

Recommended Readings:

Dr. Fastiggi:  Virgin, Mother, Queen Encountering Mary in Time and Tradition. Ave Maria Press, 2019.  



Schedule of Topics:

  • Introductory Module:
  • Module 1: Role as Mother of God
  • Module 2: Perpetual Virginity
  • Module 3: Immaculate Conception 
  • Module 4: Assumption into Heaven



Guest Lecturers:


  • Dr. Janet Diaz - Our Lady of Guadalupe
  • Dr. Ralph Martin - Our Lady of Fatima 
  • Donald Wallenfang, OCDS - Our Lady of Lourdes
  • Fr. John Vandenakker, CC - Our Lady of Kibeho



Module Activities:

The following learning activities are available to students in each module. There are no specific requirements for participating in the course. However, those who complete all the videos and self-tests will receive a certificate of completion at the end of the course.

  • Video lectures
  • Apparition lecture
  • Recommended readings and links to additional learning resources
  • Self-test to see what you’ve learned

The time commitment is flexible for this course. There are two video lectures (main lecture ~20 min and apparition lecture ~10 min) per module. Participants who are interested in completing all recommended readings and course tasks can expect to spend around 2-3 hours/module on the course. However, levels of participation and engagement are up to the discretion of the individual.


All Equip Courses Include These Features:

  • A dedicated online learning support coordinator to offer prompt assistance
  • 24/7 access to the digital learning environment
  • Engagement as a community of connected learners who share a common faith
  • Extended access to course content after the course end date
  • Learning environment support provided by Canvas (our learning management platform)
  • Technical assistance provided by Sacred Heart’s IT staff
  • A Certificate of Completion is awarded to those who complete the course learning activities


Technical Requirements:

Canvas Tech Requirements