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Year 11 Eckhardt Session 2

Our Year 11 students participate in the Eckhart program as part of the Religious Education course. This program is one of enrichment, offering our students three seminars across the year that are delivered by renowned and highly accomplished presenters who challenge them to think differently and creatively. 

On Friday, 1 June, Dr Frances Baker RSM ran a workshop based on Christian anthropology that addressed such philosophical issues as ‘In the Light of Reason’, ‘The Human Person Adequately Considered’ and ‘The Human Person in the Light of Christian Faith’. She couched these within the framework of Catholic Social Teaching and focused on the encyclical, Laudato Si, to raise important considerations for our study of Religion and Society.

Dr Frances Baker RSM is Deputy Master of the Catholic Theological College.  She is Head of the Department of Moral Theology and Canon Law, a member of the Department of Systematic Theology and is Coordinator of the Graduate Certificate in Teaching Religious Education. She lectures in Moral Theology and Systematic Theology.

The students spoke of feeling ‘stretched’ and challenged in their thinking. They appreciated being exposed to different thinking tools and other approaches to access the core principles behind Religion and Society. Some of their comments included:

‘Dr Frances Baker visited Siena College to challenge the Year 11 students with what makes the human person, from a predominantly Catholic perspective. It was interesting to engage in different viewpoints and insights. Dr Baker also used reasoning to support her arguments and that’s important in Philosophy. It was an interactive lecture and she was open to questions and different interpretations.’ Olivia Wilhelm

‘On 25 May, Dr Frances Baker came to Siena to challenge us and expand our minds on a wide range of interesting topics on Christian Social Teachings, the Human Person and their Christian faith. She encouraged us to always try and find the common good in others and stressed the fact that we are all made in the image and likeness of God. Her insights opened not only our minds but also our hearts as we reflected on what it means to be human. Overall, Dr Frances ignited a lot of discussion amongst our year level which will help us to grow and develop our own views on what it means to be Catholic.’  Emily Bolton, Yasmin Howard and Velentina Boulter 

The seminar presented by Dr Frances Baker was one that was intriguing and enlightening for us all.  I am a student in the Philosophy class and I found many points that correlated with our course. This seminar expected us to think. Some points brought up allowed for us to practise our thinking process especially using the Socratic method. I found myself thinking deeply about the meaning of being human which is a mammoth question. This was guided by the talk Dr Frances Baker gave. This seminar made me think about the very core of philosophy, and helped to foster in me a love for wisdom.’  Jade Devlin

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