Dominican School of Philosophy and Theology
Marianne Farina, CSC
Phone: 510-883-2081
Office Hours: Thursdays, 4:00 pm - 6:00 pm, and by appointment; Campus Security Authority (CSA)
Office Location: East 205


PhD, Boston College
 - Theological Ethics

MA, Santa Clara University
  - Pastoral Theology

BFA, Parsons School of Design
New School for Social Research University
  - Graphic Arts and Communication

AAS, Rockland County Community College
  - Art History

Marianne Farina, CSC

Professor of Philosophy & Theology

I want to inspire students to engage in theological/philosophical study and discourse on the critical topics facing today's global communities. I guide them to find resources for further explorations and to develop the skills necessary to share knowledge with others. My teaching style includes lectures and seminar discussion. In my teaching, research, and pastoral ministry I want to promote dialogue.

I believe that “the synonym for dialogue is learning.” Through (dia) our exchange of words (logos) we can deepen knowledge of ourselves and others. Dialogue helps us to think critically and engage with the realities of others holistically. Critical to these dialogues is the commitment to conversation with various groups as outlined in Paul VI's first encyclical Ecclesiam Suam.  Pope Paul VI identifies four circles of dialogue: among Catholics, with other Christians, with world religions, and the civil society. Each dialogue supports the other and strengthens relationships in ways that promote the common good, especially when facing difficult contemporary issues like marriage and family, immigration and migration of people, or war and peace.

I hope that students in the classroom will be inspired to engage in ongoing research of the topics explored in the courses and seminars such that their study will have a positive impact on contemporary issues in Church and society. The founder of my religious community, Blessed Basil Moreau, emphasized education as a process of formation, i.e., information serves formation for the sake of transformation. This calls for a pedagogy that can help students to reflect deeply and broadly by engaging different - even opposing - worldviews. Such an approach helps us to deliberate well, choose wisely, and act justly.

I am  a member of the Core Doctoral Faculty of the GTU, faculty member for the Center for Islamic Studies, member of the Catholic Theological Society of America, The Society of Christian Ethics, Society for the Study of Muslim Ethics, and North American Association of  Islamic and Muslim Studies. I serve on the editorial board for the Journal for Interreligious Dialogue, and I recently participated in the Anglican and Roman Catholic Dialogue for United States (ARCIC). 

Current DSPT course information and syllabi
Course descriptions and information for all GTU member schools

Past courses taught by Marianne Farina, CSC:

Virtue Theory: Islam and Christianity (PHCE 4830)
Catholic Social Teaching (CE-3050)
Christian-Muslim Dialogue (HRST-2083)
Roman Catholic Sexual Ethics (CE-2003)
Faith in Human Rights (PHCE-4960)
Agents of Transformation (ST-4047)
Western Social Thought II (RSCE-5003)
Indonesia Theological Immersion (STRS-4217)
Professions of Faith (ST-4141)


Sacred Conversations and the Evolution of Dialogue. Mahwah, NJ: Paulist Press, 2017.
Moral Goodness and Friendship with God: The Moral Teachings of Thomas Aquinas and Hamid al-Ghazali. PhD Dissertation, Boston College, 2004.
Intercultural Catechesis: Developing National Catechetical Plans. Jessore, Bangladesh: National Center for Catechetical and Social Development, 2003.

Articles and Chapters

“‘Who do they say that I am?’ Muslim Perspectives on Jesus,” US Catholic Magazine September 2016.
“Interreligious Friendship: Cultivating Theological Virtue” in Interreligious Friendships edited by Tracy Sayuki Tiemeier and James L. Fredericks, Palgrave MacMillian, 2015.
“Theological Ethics of Abu Hamid al-Ghazali.” in 900 Jahre al-Gazali im Spiegel der islamischen Wissenschften, edited by Bulet Ucar and Frank Griffel Germany: University of Osnabruck Press, 2015.
“Muslim and Christian Principles of Debate: Renewing Discourse in the Public Square.” in Engaging the Other: Public Policy and the Clash of Ignorance, edited by Karim H. Karim and Mahmoud Eid.  MacMillian Press, 2014.
“Teaching Comparative Theological Ethics” and Guest Editor Listening: Journal of Communication Ethics, Religion, and Culture (Summer) 2013.
“Pursuing Meaning and Method for a Living Faith: Ethical-Religious Challenges,” Studies in Interreligious Dialogue 21 (Fall 2011): 79-95.
“Human Rights Discourse Across Religious Traditions,” Listening: Journal of Communication Ethics, Religion, and Culture, 45, 3 (Fall 2010): 146-165.
“God's Presence and the Moral Life: Shared Resources from the Writings of Thomas Aquinas and Abu Hamid Muhammad al-Ghazali.”Jarboeek, Thomas Instituut te Utretcht, Annual Publication (2005).

Book Reviews

“Building Bridges and Interfaith Study” Anglican Journal of Review October 2016.
Wael B. Hallaq. What is Sharia?: An Introduction. Ethiopian Journal of Religious Studies, Fall 2011.
Aaron Stalnaker. Overcoming our Evil. Washington, D.C.: Georgetown University Press, 2006. Journal of the Society for Christian Ethics 30, no. 2 (Fall-Winter 2010): 215-216.
Roland E. Miller. Muslims and The Gospel: A Reflection on Christian Sharing. Minneapolis: Lutheran Univ. Press, 2005. Mission Studies: Journal of the International Association for Mission Studies Magazine 24, no. 2 (February 2007): 341-342.

2017 Aquinas Lecture by Sr. Marianne

Research interests

  • the Church's social justice teaching
  • comparative theology
  • interfaith dialogue and philosophical studies in Islam
  • bringing Aquinas' virtue theory into dialogue with other religious and philosophical traditions
  • cross-cultural communication
  • methods of interfaith dialogue
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