Fr. Roger R. Corriveau A.A., S.T.D.

Visiting Assistant Professor of Theology

508-767-7574 Founders Hall - Room 323

Teaching Objectives

Assumption University’s mission to the world establishes my teaching objectives. Violent climactic changes, global warfare, political dysfunction and a pandemic besides glaringly reveal a world whose population vastly comprises the economically deprived, the millions emigrating by force and by terror, the starving, the billions crushed beneath social and political structures that privilege a few and ignore the lot of most. And in our nation millions are bludgeoned by racism, choked by institutionalized prejudice and overlooked by the selfishly self-satisfied. History makes plain that in times of crisis like ours, the poor, the marginalized and those most socially vulnerable are the ones who pay the highest price for living. We could stand to be crushed by the weight of these world realities.

As we face these crises, Pope Francis challenges us to actualize the specific mission of academic institutions like Assumption University: 

We are all living in an information-driven society which bombards us indiscriminately with data – all treated as being of equal importance – and which leads to remarkable superficiality in the area of moral discernment. In response, we need to provide an education which teaches critical thinking and encourages the development of mature moral values. (Evangelii gaudium, 64)

Our actions must speak louder than our words to prove our conviction that the God of life, source of our hope, journeys with us to promote human flourishing for everyone. If we faculty members fail to take charge of reality at times like this, we must wonder then why we would mentor and teach our students merely to find their way to professional success in a world that continues to wreck the lives of billions of sisters and brothers.

Inspired by the Assumptionist conviction grounded in Saint Augustine’s love of Wisdom, we entrust ourselves to the innate capacity of the mind and of the heart to reach out toward God and to one another, because we believe that the human mind is grounded in God’s own Logos and the human heart in God’s own Spirit. This is the faith that establishes Assumption University’s highest hope for our world, realizable through the liberal pursuit of the arts and sciences.

Ultimately, an Assumption education teaches us to educate ourselves throughout our lives, inspires us to delight in the pursuit of all that is good, true and beautiful, and that challenges us to be effectively and compassionately engaged with our fellow human beings, who might otherwise never have a chance to enjoy the good life that could actually pervade the whole planet.

As a teacher I strive to be a “professor,” one who lives from what I teach and learns from whom I teach. I persistently hope to enable my students to enjoy life as much as I do and to find God as its still-point. My greatest wish, then, is to inspire my students to discover themselves through that pursuit of the good, the true, and the beautiful that lodge within themselves, and ultimately to contemplate the unity of these three in God’s own self. My hope then is to inspire students to engage their voices in the great humanistic conversation that has been going on for thousands of years within and beyond the Christian tradition of liberal arts and sciences.

My wanting to help students experience the joy of living and thinking attracts me especially to the majority of them who for one reason or another find themselves disassociated from religion and drifting along the edges of faith. They find religious practice irrelevant in the frenetic pace of their everyday lives; or they are ambivalently associated with religion as sons and daughters of parents who no longer belong to any religious affiliation; or they feel deeply wounded from broken homes where they no longer feel at home; or they feel disenfranchised from their religious communities where they or their friends feel belittled or disparaged for their sexual or gender identities. Theology cannot be made to float theoretically and nebulously above students’ human situations. For me the only really meaningful “God-talk” (theos + logos = theologia) needs to stir within the actual lives and experience of students.

The Assumptionist motto emerges from the Lord’s Prayer: Adveniat regnum tuum - ART: “Your Kingdom come!” The Reign of God is present only where the men and women of this world relinquish the selfish pursuit of themselves and allow themselves to be loved by the God by whom they exist. Assumption University commits itself ultimately to promote the full humanity of every person, until the courageous, unabashed humanity of someone like Jesus Christ becomes the driving thrust of their lives, . . . until Christ be formed in them.
 

Degrees Earned

  • S.T.D., summa cum laude, Theology and Patristic Studies, Pontificium Athenaeum S. Anselmi de Urbe, Rome, 2020 Thesis Title: “Deep Is Calling on Deep: The Mystagogy of Augustine’s Confessions And His Homilies on the Gospel of John”
  • Diploma, magna cum laude, Theology and Patristic Studies, Institutum Patristicum Augustinianum, Rome, 1992
  • S.T.L., magna cum laude, Theology and Patristic Studies (Specialization: Saint Augustine), Institutum Patristicum Augustinianum, Rome, 1991
  • M.A., Theological Studies, Boston College (Joint Doctoral Program, Boston College and Andover Newton Theological School), 1978
  • M.Div., with distinction, Weston School of Theology, Cambridge, Massachusetts, 1972
  • A.B., magna cum laude (Major: Philosophy), Assumption College, Worcester, Massachusetts, 1969

Undergraduate Courses Taught

  • THE 100: Introduction to Theology, fall 2015 - present
  • THE 100: The Bible, spring 1993 - spring 2015
  • THE 150: The Problem of God, spring 2018 - present
  • THE 203: The Early Church, fall 1992 - present
  • THE 207: Christ, Yesterday and Today, 1995 - present (once listed as THE 332)
  • THE 333: The Mystery of the Church, 1994 - present
  • THE 391: Theology of Liturgy (Special Topics), spring 2016
  • THE 391: The Intellectual and Cultural Life of the Early Christians (Special Topics), spring 2008
  • THE 391: Saint Augustine, spring 2007
  • THE 391: Theology of Liturgy (Special Topics), spring 2016
  • THE 391: The Nature of Theology (Special Topics), fall 1993 and fall 1998
  • THE 392: Senior Seminar: Looking Along the Inklings, spring 1997
  • THE 392: Seminar: C.S. Lewis, spring 1994
  • THE 450: Senior Seminar, Spring 2016 THE 499: Sacramental Theology (Special Topics), fall 1996
  • THE 499: The Biblical Hermeneutics of Saint Augustine (Special Topics), fall 1994
  • THE 538: The Church (Graduate Course), fall 1994
  • THE 540: Early Church History (Directed Studies, Graduate Course), fall 1993
  • THE 557: Sacramental Theology (Graduate Course), fall 1996

Conferences and Publications

“Heart to Heart: the Self-Transcending Soul’s Desire for the Transcendent.” In Predrag Cicovacki, ed. The Human Soul: Essays in Honor of Nalin Ranasinghe. Wilmington, DE: Vernon Press, 2021. 21-40.

“The Once and Future Self: Memory in Saint Augustine’s Confessions.” In Glenn Arbery, ed. So Ancient and So New: St. Augustine’s Confessions and Its Influences. South Bend, IN: Saint Augustine’s Press, 2019. 29-46.

Presenter, “Saint Augustin et l’intériorité,” Montmartre Canadien, Québec, P.Q., Fall, 2018.

“Confessions of a Teacher,” [In Eloise Knowlton, ed.] Teaching After d’Alzon: Essays on Education Today. New London, CT: Twenty Third Publications, 2011. 8-27.

“An Essay on Madame Bovary, by Gustave Flaubert (1856-57),” In Dawn Thistle, ed. An Assumption Library: Essays Presented in Celebration of the 29th Anniversary of the Emmanuel D’Alzon Library. Worcester, MA: Assumption College, 2008, 44-6.

“An Essay on Le Petit Prince, by Antoine de Saint-Exupéry (1943), In Dawn Thistle, ed. An Assumption Library: Essays Presented in Celebration of the 29th Anniversary of the Emmanuel D’Alzon Library. Worcester, MA: Assumption College, 2008, 82-4.

Presenter, “Saint Augustine’s Confessions about His Love-Life,” Association for Core Texts and Courses, Fourteenth Annual Conference, April 2008

Participant, “St. Augustine: Pastor at the Dawn of a New Millennium,” Summer Ecumenical Institute, Assumption College, June 25-30, 2000

Presenter, “The Second Pillar of the Catechism, ‘Celebrating the Christian Mystery’,” Certificate Program for the Study of the Catechism of the Catholic Church, Assumption College Institute for the Study of the Magisterial Teaching of the Church, 1996-97.

Presenter, “Saint Augustine’s Images of Illumination in His In Euangelium Iohannis Tractatus 154," The International Conference on Patristic, Medieval and Renaissance Studies, Villanova University, Villanova, Pennsylvania, October 1-3, 1993

Participant, Augustine’s Legacy: A Symposium of the Teachings of Augustine, Villanova University, March 25-27, 1993

Participant, International Patristic Conference, Oxford University, England, August, 1991

Professional Affiliations

  • North American Patristic Society
  • College Theology Society
  • Society for the Study of Christian Spirituality