This is our catalog of courses. We will occasionally adjust the course listing to reflect the addition of new courses and the retirement of others. 

Recorded HS
Pope Saint John Paul II Encyclical: The Mercy of God (Dives in Misericordia)

What’s an Encyclical, why is it important to my faith, and does it matter to me, as a teen? The answer is a resounding yes! In this short course, we will explore in detail Pope Saint John Paul II’s Encyclical: The Mercy of God (Dives in Misericordia) and explore practical ways to live out these teachings on mercy in our daily lives.

Total classes: 6

Prerequisite: None

Suggested grade level: 9th to 12th

Suggested credit: ½ semester Theology


This course will provide an in-depth look at Pope St. John Paul II’s Encyclical “The Mercy of God” (Dives in Misericordia), which he himself describes as “a heartfelt appeal by the Church to mercy, which humanity and the modern world need so much.” In this course, we will carefully read the Holy Father’s encyclical and will also use examples from other papal documents and from the life and witness of Pope St. John Paul II himself to illustrate his teachings. Examining this encyclical will give students the confidence to read the documents of the Church themselves and to incorporate the wisdom of Pope St. John Paul’s teachings into their own lives and to allow their lives to influence the culture around them.


Class One: The Basics: What is an encyclical? Where does this encyclical fit in the other Papal teachings of Pope St. John Paul II? Why did JPII write this encyclical and what did he hope it would give to the world?

Class Two: “The Messianic Message” and “Mercy in the Old Testament”

Class Three: “The Parable of the Prodigal Son”

Class Four: “The Paschal Mystery” – Mercy revealed in the Cross and Resurrection, Mary as the Mother of Mercy

Class Five: “Mercy…From Generation to Generation” – an examination of challenges facing our world today.

Class Six: “The Mercy of God in the Mission of the Church” – our role as missionaries of mercy.

Materials and Homework

Course materials: Dives in Misericordia is a 42-page document that can be printed for free from the Vatican Website: http://www.vatican.va/content/john-paul-ii/en/encyclicals/documents/hf_jp-ii_enc_30111980_dives-in-misericordia.html. Also available for purchase from the Daughters of St. Paul, https://paulinestore.com/mercy-of-god-dives-in-misericordia-3125-159049.html.


Read the Encyclical

Watch the recorded classes

Review the PowerPoints

Take the quizzes

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