On Veritatis Splendor

In this series of lectures, we consider Veritatis splendor, Pope St. John Paul II’s encyclical on moral theology. As is typical of the Catholic tradition, Veritatis splendor attempts to integrate faith and reason by using both revelation and philosophical argumentation to answer important questions about morality and the moral life.

We examine the pope’s use of the story of Christ’s encounter with the rich young man to discuss some of the basic concepts of moral theology and review his insights on four major areas of concern: freedom and law, conscience and truth, the proper way to provide a moral analysis of a deliberate human act, and the role of teleology in moral matters. Finally, we consider the pastoral dimensions of the encyclical, especially John Paul II’s reflections on holiness and martyrdom in the service of the truths about morality.

The course includes:

  • 16 thirty-minute video lectures
  • 16 additional lessons, which expand on the video lectures
  • Extra reading and writing assignments (optional)
  • Unlimited access to the course

Throughout the series, we define important terms and show the patterns of the pope’s arguments in order to bring out the significance of the encyclical’s reflections for understanding the distinctively Catholic position in moral theology, a subject of special importance today as so many of the pope’s insights are being attacked or undermined by recent developments.

On Veritatis Splendor was written and recorded by the International Catholic University. TCT Courses proudly has received the rights to offer this course by Rev. Joseph Koterski, S.J. to a wider audience.

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Rev. Joseph Koterski, S.J.


Rev. Joseph W. Koterski, S.J., (1953-2021) taught Philosophy at Fordham University, where he won both the Dean’s Award for Outstanding Undergraduate Teaching and the Graduate Teacher of the Year Award. He was the editor-in-chief of International Philosophical Quarterly, and the President of the Fellowship of Catholic Scholars. He has produced videotaped lecture-courses on “Aristotle’s Ethics,” on “Natural Law and Human Nature,” and most recently on “Biblical Wisdom Literature” for The Teaching Company.