With this course, Bishop Joseph Strickland focuses on the foundational teachings and principles of our Catholic faith and the importance of moral coherence in our personal exercise of faithful citizenship. That will entail a special emphasis on Authentic Catholic Social Teaching. It is a real tragedy that even the principles of Catholic Social Teaching are often being corrupted and coopted by some whose attitudes and approaches are not Catholic or Christian at all.

Catholics, in their exercise of their citizenship, too often succumb to what the Fathers of the Second Vatican Council warned of in the “Pastoral Constitution on the Church in the Modern World” (“Gaudium et Spes”). They wrote: “This split between the faith which many profess, and their daily lives deserves to be counted among the more serious errors of our age” (Par. 43)

In short, faith and Life must come together for Catholics. The full Deposit of Faith must be guarded - and it must inform every area of our life, including our social and civic participation. 

Objective: In this course, students will learn how to inform their conscience and inform their exercise of Christian citizenship. Students will learn why it's important to be morally coherent. Students will learn about the Right to Life and the dignity of every human person, about why marriage and family are vital, and why we must continue to stand up for religious freedom and parental choice in education. 

You’re joining our global classroom. Thousands of students from all over the world, each with their own unique story, learn at their own pace on Catholic Online School every single day.

Free Resources and tools for students, parents, and teachers. We’re working hard to ensure that Catholic Online School empowers teachers of all kinds to better understand what their children or students are up to and how best to help them. 

For free. For everyone. Forever.

With God, you can learn anything

Course curriculum

  • 01

    Social Doctrine of the Catholic Church - Lesson 1 - Morally Coherent Catholic Citizenship

    Show Content
    • Lesson 1 - Morally Coherent Catholic Citizenship - Introduction
    • Resources for Students, Parents, and Teachers
    • Lesson 1 - Morally Coherent Catholic Citizenship - LESSON PLAN / STUDY GUIDE
    • Lesson 1 - Morally Coherent Catholic Citizenship - VIDEO
    • Lesson 1 - Morally Coherent Catholic Citizenship - QUIZ
  • 02

    Social Doctrine of the Catholic Church - Lesson 2 - The Pre-Eminent Moral Mandate: The Right to Life

    Show Content
    • Lesson 2 - The Pre-Eminent Moral Mandate: The Right to Life - Introduction
    • Resources for Students, Parents, and Teachers
    • Lesson 2 - The Pre-Eminent Moral Mandate: The Right to Life - LESSON PLAN / STUDY GUIDE
    • Lesson 2 - The Pre-Eminent Moral Mandate: The Right to Life - VIDEO
    • Lesson 2 - The Pre-Eminent Moral Mandate: The Right to Life - QUIZ
  • 03

    Social Doctrine of the Catholic Church - Lesson 3 - The Right to Religious Freedom Should Inform our Voting

    Show Content
    • Lesson 3 - The Right to Religious Freedom Should Inform our Voting - Introduction
    • Resources for Students, Parents, and Teachers
    • Lesson 3 - The Right to Religious Freedom Should Inform our Voting - LESSON PLAN / STUDY GUIDE
    • Lesson 3 - The Right to Religious Freedom Should Inform our Voting - VIDEO
    • Lesson 3 - The Right to Religious Freedom Should Inform our Voting - QUIZ
  • 04

    Social Doctrine of the Catholic Church - Lesson 4 - Vote for Candidates who Respect and Protect Marriage and Family

    Show Content
    • Lesson 4 - Vote for Candidates who Respect and Protect Marriage and Family - Introduction
    • Resources for Students, Parents, and Teachers
    • Lesson 4 - Vote for Candidates who Respect and Protect Marriage and Family - LESSON PLAN / STUDY GUIDE
    • Lesson 4 - Vote for Candidates who Respect and Protect Marriage and Family - VIDEO
    • Lesson 4 - Vote for Candidates who Respect and Protect Marriage and Family - QUIZ
  • 05

    Social Doctrine of the Catholic Church - Lesson 5 - Vote for Candidates who Support Parental Choice in Education

    Show Content
    • Lesson 5 - Vote for Candidates who Support Parental Choice in Education- Introduction
    • Resources for Students, Parents, and Teachers
    • Lesson 5 - Vote for Candidates who Support Parental Choice in Education - LESSON PLAN / STUDY GUIDE
    • Lesson 5 - Vote for Candidates who Support Parental Choice in Education - VIDEO
    • Lesson 5 - Vote for Candidates who Support Parental Choice in Education- QUIZ

Instructor(s)

Instructor Bio:

Bishop Joseph Edward Strickland serves as the fourth Bishop of Tyler.

To read messages from Bishop Strickland, visit BishopStrickland.com.

Bishop Strickland was born the sixth child of Raymond and Monica Strickland on October 31, 1958. He grew up in Atlanta, Texas. The Strickland’s were founding members of St. Catherine of Sienna Church in Atlanta, Texas where he assisted as an altar server. He entered first grade in Atlanta public schools in 1965 and graduated from Atlanta High School in May of 1977.

He entered Holy Trinity Seminary and the University of Dallas; studying for the Diocese of Dallas in August of 1977, and earned a Bachelor of Philosophy in May of 1981. He continued his education at Holy Trinity and the University of Dallas and was ordained to the Diaconate by then Bishop Michael Sheehan at Holy Trinity Seminary on December 8, 1984.

He earned a Master of Divinity Degree in May of 1985 and was ordained to the priesthood for the Diocese of Dallas by Bishop Thomas Tschoepe at St. Monica Catholic Church in Dallas, Texas on June 1, 1985.

He was assigned as a newly-ordained priest to Immaculate Conception Parish in Tyler, Texas in June of 1985 and served as Parochial Vicar until June of 1989. Upon the erection of the Diocese of Tyler on February 24, 1987, he then joined the presbyterate of the new diocese and was named the first vocation director for the diocese in March of 1987 by Bishop Charles Herzig. He was assigned as Parochial Vicar of Sacred Heart Parish in Nacogdoches, Texas in June of 1989 and served there until October of that same year when he was assigned as pastor of St. Michael Parish in Mt. Pleasant, Texas. He served as pastor of St. Michael's until August of 1992 when he was assigned to canonical studies at the Catholic University of America by Bishop Edmond Carmody.

Strickland completed his canonical studies with a Licentiate in Canon Law in May of 1994 and was assigned by Bishop Edmond Carmody as rector of the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception in Tyler, Texas in June of that same year. He was appointed Judicial Vicar for the Diocese of Tyler in May of 1995 and named a Prelate of Honor with the title Monsignor by His Holiness Pope John Paul II in February of 1996.

He was elected Administrator of the Diocese of Tyler in March of 2000 when Bishop Carmody departed for Corpus Christi and served in that capacity until January of 2001 when Bishop Álvaro Corrada, SJ, was installed as the third bishop of the Diocese of Tyler. He continued to serve as rector of the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception and Judicial Vicar of the diocese until February 1, 2010, when Bishop Corrada named him Vicar General. He served in that capacity until September of 2011 when Bishop Corrada was installed as the second Bishop of Mayagüez, Puerto Rico and appointed Apostolic Administrator of the Diocese of Tyler sede vacante. At that time, Bishop Corrada appointed him as Delegate of the Apostolic Administrator.

On September 29, 2012, it was announced that His Holiness Pope Benedict XVI had chosen Strickland as the fourth bishop of the Diocese of Tyler. He was ordained to the episcopacy on November 28, 2012, by His Eminence Daniel Cardinal DiNardo of Galveston-Houston with Bishop Álvaro Corrada, SJ of Mayagüez, Puerto Rico and Archbishop Michael J. Sheehan of Santa Fe assisting as co-consecrators.

Bishop Joseph Strickland

Bishop of the Diocese of Tyler

Bishop Joseph Strickland