Sample Study Session

A New Language: A Study Guide on John Paul II's Theology of the Body covers the basic concepts of the theology of the body as presented in Crossing the Threshold of Love by Mary Shivanandan, S.T.D. (The Catholic University of America Press, 1999).

Under the guidance of a trained facilitator, participants learn from their own and others' experiences that the theology of the body both affirms their own deepest intuitions and opens them to the fullness of God's plan "from the beginning" as revealed in Scripture and mediated by the Sacraments.


The study guide has 24 sessions, grouped in four seasons corresponding to the sections of The Theology of the Body by Pope John Paul II (Pauline Books and Media, 1997). Each session is based on excerpts from Crossing the Threshold of Love.  For the Second Edition of the guide, every participant should have this book as well as the study guide. Each session also has some recommended excerpts from The Theology of the Body, but only the facilitator needs to have these. However, because so many participants have also requested these excerpts, we have obtained a license from Pauline Books and Media to provide copies of the Wednesday talks from which the excerpts are taken. The full set is 130 pages and can be obtained for a fee of $3.00 per person and your cost of duplication.

The Third Edition of the guide does not require that participants have Crossing the Threshold of Love.  The Third Edition contains the same material in simplified language as part of the guide.  In addition, it provides reading citations to the latest English translation of Blessed John Paul II's theology of the body, Man and Woman He Created Them (Pauline Books and Media, 2006).


The facilitator may choose to use the latest edition of John Paul II's work, Man and Woman He Created Them: A Theology of the Body, for which the citations are also available. A license to make copies of the excerpts from the latest edition has been requested but not yet received.

The study guide has references to the Catechism of the Catholic Church and a biblical reading for each session, a Glossary of Terms, and a Facilitator's Guide with detailed instructions on how to run a group. All facilitators must be certified by Imago Dei, Inc.

You may choose to use either the Second Edition or the Third Edition.  To introduce you to the study guide, the first session of each edition, with all the texts included, may be viewed.  The actual guide has citations to, not the texts from, Crossing the Threshold of Love, Man and Woman He Created Them, Scripture, and The Catechism of the Catholic Church.

Second Edition, Session One                  Third Edition, Session One

Please note that all materials are covered by international copyrights. The complete table of contents of the study guide may also be viewed.

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