High School Resources from the Magis Center
(New resources are being continually produced - please check back often)
The Magis Center of Reason and Faith develops resources in the four major areas of intellectual evangelization.
The Full Range of Resources at the Magis Center
The resources below are primarily concerned with faith and reason, particularly faith and science. As new resources become available, this will become more balanced. Magis Center also provides additional materials in all four areas of intellectual evangelization. Use the links below to select a landing page of your choice:
Live High School Presentations:
Many high schools throughout the United States have expressed interest in having a dynamic speaker present the material found in our Four Pillars of Evangelization at their location. The Magis Center provides this opportunity through a bureau of presenters who are knowledgeable and engaging. For an overview of our presentation topics, speakers, and fees – click here.
Why Faith and Science is Important In High School:
Many (if not most) high school students today are being challenged by the the four popular secular myths. Belief in these myths have already led a large number to skepticism and unbelief. We must redress these myths at its origin in high school. Doing so can change a student’s entire outlook on life, self, and God.
The Magis Center has developed, and is continuing to develop, resources for high school teachers and students to respond to these allegations with cutting edge research in science, philosophy and theology.
1. The Reason Series (three resources for 9th and 10th grade)
2. Cosmic Origins – The Documentary (one resource for 9th-12th grade)
3. Science, God & Creation (two resources for 11th and 12th grade)
4. Evidence for God from Contemporary Science and Philosophy – Twenty-two On-line Lectures (2 resources – for seniors—in preparation for college)
5. From Nothing to Cosmos (3 resources for 10th grade and up)
6. Happiness, The Series (2 resources for 9th Grade and above)
1. The Reason Series (three resources for 9th and 10th grade)
This program was designed and approved as a supplemental unit to the Bishops’ (USCCB) curricular framework for the first semester of the freshman year (in the topic area of faith and reason). It can be completed in five to seven class days, and provides vital information to students who may believe that science and faith are irreconcilable or who are experiencing skepticism about their faith. This program is also being used for ninth and tenth grade students in the homeschooling community with considerable benefit. We recommend that parents show this program to their ninth and tenth grade students at home if they are attending a public high school or a Catholic high school that does not currently carry it.
Description of The Reason Series: The Reason Series is a five-part comprehensive, age appropriate program designed to empower teachers to effortlessly provide students the evidence they need to be more certain about a transcendent, super-intelligent, creative power – God. Based on the award-winning book, New Proofs for the Existence of God: Contributions of Contemporary Physics and Philosophy by Fr. Robert J. Spitzer, S.J. Ph.D., The Reason Series follows college freshman Joe as he learns to defend his faith from his atheist roommate, Tyler, with the help of physics and philosophy grad students, Dan and Alana.
i. Why science can’t disprove (or prove) God exists.
ii. The evidence for a beginning of the universe (or any multiverse) from the Borde-Vilenkin-Guth Proof.
iii. The evidence for a beginning of the universe from entropy.
iv. The evidence for supernatural design from universal constant’s and the initial conditions of the universe.
v. The evidence for survival of human consciousness after bodily death (from medical studies of near death experiences).
vi. How the bible and science can be, and should be, reconciled?
vii. Catholics and evolution?
viii. Why Jesus Christ is significant?
ix. Explaining evil and suffering?
The Reason Series resources:
1. A 5-DVD set covering the topics mentioned above.
2. A Faculty Resource Manual to support the DVD presentations.
3. A Student Workbook to support the 5-DVD set.
A. The Reason Series (5 DVD Set) – $29.95
This 5-DVD set covering the topics mentioned above can be shown in the classroom. Teachers can stop the DVD presentation and engage the students in discussion, and to check their comprehension of the content. This is a dramatization of a college student who must contend with an atheist roommate through the help of PHD students in physics and philosophy. This has already been shown in dozens of classrooms around the United States. The 9th graders not only benefit from it, but enjoy it. The science in the DVD’s is quite contemporary, and biographies of physicists and references are given in the Faculty Resource Manual. Each DVD contains oral and written summaries and many engaging graphics within the dramatization. It is filmed at Mt. Wilson Observatory, and college and high school campuses.
Click here to purchase the 5-DVD set
Click here to watch episode 2 now for FREE
B. Faculty Resource Manual – $17.95
This Faculty Resource Manual contains extensive summaries and explanations of all the concepts and evidence presented in the DVD’s. It also provides biographies of key scientists, references, quizzes, answers to quizzes, classroom discussion suggestions, and extra projects.
Click here to purchase the Faculty Resource Manual
C. Student Workbook – $11.11
This Student Workbook contains extensive explanations and summaries of the concepts and evidence discussed in the DVD presentations. It also contains biographies of key scientists, quizzes, and discussion questions and topics.
Click here to purchase the Student Workbook
D. The Three Resource Set – $49.95
The complete set of three items (the 5-DVD Set, the Faculty Resource Manual, and the Student Workbook) and may be purchased for $49.95 (a savings of $9.06).
Click here to purchase the Three Resource Set
2. Cosmic Origins (one resource for 9th-12th grade) – $19.95
This 50-minute documentary is an ideal complement to both The Reason Series (ninth grade program) and Science, God & Creation (twelfth grade program). It features eight world renowned physicists speaking about the evidence for creation and supernatural design from contemporary physics. Included are Dr. Arno Penzias (Nobel Prize for discovering Cosmic Microwave Background Radiation), Dr. John Polkinghorne (Cambridge University Physics, Templeton Laureate), Dr. Owen Gingerich (Harvard University – Astronomy), Dr. Michael Heller (Vatican Observatory, Templeton Laureate), Dr. Lisa Randall (Harvard University Cosmology), Dr. Jennifer Wiseman (NASA Goddard Institute of Space Studies), and Dr. Stephen Barr (University of Delaware Physics).
The production values are high and the graphics and visual effects are outstanding. This product is recommended for introduction of faith and science as it has the strength of the testimony of the 8 world renowned scientists. This is an excellent tool for parish Confirmation retreats and Confirmation classes.
Click here to watch trailer
3. Science, God and Creation (two resources for 11th and 12th grade)
This is a supplemental unit to the support the Bishops’ curricular framework in the senior year (first or second semester) giving an extensive explanation of the evidence for God from contemporary science. Many senior class teachers have indicated that it is a “must see” for students going to college where they are likely to be confronted by the incorrect contention that faith and science are irreconcilable. This program is also being used in the homeschooling community for eleventh and twelfth grade with considerable benefit. We recommend that parents show this program to their eleventh and twelfth grade students at home if they are attending a public high school or a Catholic high school that does not currently carry it. It provides essential evidence to help analytically oriented students maintain and foster their faith.
A. Science, God and Creation (the DVD) – $14.95
Science, God and Creation is a one hour & fifty-five minute dynamic presentation (with graphics and Power Points) presented in front of a live audience by Fr. Robert J. Spitzer, S.J., Ph.D.. He discusses the evidence for God from contemporary science, medicine and philosophy. It is divided into seven chapters which can be accessed individually from the root menu:
1. What scientific method can and cannot do
2. The Big Bang Theory and the modern universe
3. The Borde-Vilenkin-Guth proof for a beginning of our universe (and any multiverse)
4. The evidence for a beginning of a universe from entropy
5. Evidence of supernatural design from the fine-tuning of universal constants and initial conditions
6. The evidence of survival of human consciousness after bodily death from near death experiences
7. Why God does not need a creator & why is Jesus Christ important?
Religion and/or science teachers could present one or two chapters per class, and the material can be adequately covered in five to seven class dates. The DVD can be complemented by the study guide, From Nothing to Cosmos, useful for both teachers and students.
Click here to watch now for FREE
This Study Guide contains comprehensive questions and answers for all the material in God and Science. It also has the power point slides from the presentations, as well as quotations, biographies, and references of major scientists and philosophers.
Click here to purchase the Comprehensive Study Guide
4. On-line College Lecture Series (two resources – for seniors—in preparation for college)
Evidence for God from Contemporary Physics and Philosophy – Resources include on-line lectures and a study guide
This on-line lecture series is recommended for high school seniors who would like preparation on the evidence for God from science and philosophy before going to college. It may be taken in the senior year of high school, the summer before college, or during college. Students may take the lecture series and work through the study guide.
A. Twenty-two On-line Lectures on the Evidence for God from Contemporary Physics and Philosophy – $30.00
This lecture series has twenty-two on-line lectures by Fr. Robert J. Spitzer, S.J., Ph.D. that covers the following topics:
1. The evidence for God from contemporary science
2. A contemporary logical-metaphysical proof for the existence of God (including a mini lecture series on formal logic)
3. The evidence for survival of consciousness after bodily death from near death experiences (in peer reviewed medical journals)
4. The five transcendentals – perfect and unconditional Truth, Love, Goodness, Beauty, and Being
Click here to purchase the On-line College Lecture Series
Please note: If you sign up for this lecture series, you will not receive DVD’s in the mail. Instead, you will receive an email with a username and password. Simply click on the button below and log in with the information you received. You will have access to the lectures for one year and you may use them as often as you wish.B. Evidence for God from Contemporary Science and Philosophy – $9.95
This comprehensive set of questions and answers is designed as a study guide to accompany Fr. Spitzer’s award winning book, New Proofs for the Existence of God…, as well as the College Lecture Series titled, Evidence for God from Physics and Philosophy. Though it is written specifically with those products in mind, the first chapter will be very helpful to those who have purchased Cosmic Origins or Science, God and Creation.
Click here to purchase the study guide, Evidence for God from Contemporary Science and Philosophy
5. From Nothing to Cosmos (three resources for 10th grade and up)
This DVD series featuring Fr. Robert J. Spitzer S.J., Ph.D. is a full treatment of topics concerned with the evidence for God from contemporary science. It covers the topics in Science, God and Creation (see #3 above) in greater depth and detail. It also covers six topics not treated in Science, God & Creation:
i. Why the occurrence of our universal constants and initial conditions cannot be explained by the contention that “it is just here.”
ii. How can the bible and science be reconciled?
iii. What can Catholics believe about evolution?
iv. How the human desire for the five transcendentals (perfect and unconditional Truth, Love, Justice/Goodness, Beauty, and Being) indicates the presence of a transphysical soul.
v. Why belief in an unrestricted, absolutely simple, pure power (i.e. God) is a more rational explanation than naturalistic explanations (multiverses, pure chance, etc.) to explain universal fine-tuning.
vi. What about aliens?
This 4 DVD set (approximately 4 hours) is a dynamic presentation (with separately available The Workbook +) can be used for a twelve-part presentation in senior religion courses. It can also be used as the foundation for a one-semester course in faith and science.
A. From Nothing to Cosmos (four hours – four DVD set) – $49.95
Click here to purchase the 4-DVD Set
Click here to watch episode 1 now for FREE
B. From Nothing to Cosmos: The Workbook + – $17.95
The Workbook + is a comprehensive workbook aimed at upper level High School ability and above. It is meant to accompany the DVD series, From Nothing to Cosmos: God and Science, but is capable of being a stand alone educational product.
Click here to purchase The Workbook +
C. From Nothing to Cosmos (complete set – four DVD’s plus The Workbook +) – $59.95
Click here to purchase the Four DVD set plus The Workbook +
D. From Nothing to Cosmos, Comprehensive Study Guide – $14.95
This Study Guide contains comprehensive questions and answers for all the material in From Nothing to Cosmos. It also has the power point slides from the presentations, as well as quotations, biographies, and references of major scientists and philosophers.
Click here to purchase the Comprehensive Study Guide
6. Happiness, The Series
HAPPINESS, THE SERIES – $39.95
Aristotle said, “Happiness is the one thing you can choose for itself – everything else is chosen for the sake of happiness. “In this one phrase, he reveals how happiness affects our view of ourselves, success, purpose in life – and yes – even our happiness. This one concept controls what we pursue in life and career – and who we choose as our friends and spouses – just about everything we believe and hold dear.
Our high school students need to seriously engage this question in order to make sense out of their lives, their studies, and themselves. Fr. Robert Spitzer has devised a program called “The Four Levels of Happiness” which helps students (and teachers) better understand their options for happiness and purpose in life – and to recognize the traps and pitfalls of delaying decisions, and selecting unwisely. In these 7 episodes, students will encounter the major ideas and principles underlying their happiness – as well as its two related issues – transcendent eternal life and the purpose of suffering.
Two lively young narrators – Eric Johnson and Jennifer Milani – help to interpret world-renowned experts who provide contemporary evidence for God, the soul, the resurrection of Jesus, and the purpose of suffering. An illustrated, user-friendly Study Guide is also available with summaries, study questions, definitions, biographies, and references. You can watch Episode One here for free.
This 7-episode video series is designed to answer the most fundamental questions affecting our lives — our happiness, purpose, dignity, and sense of destiny:
1. What is happiness — and how can we be optimally happy?
2. What makes life worth living — and even optimally worth living?
3. Do we have a transcendent eternal soul through which God calls us to himself?
4. Why does God allow suffering — and how can we suffer well?
The authors of this program selected world-renowned experts in these four areas to present the most contemporary scientific, medical, psychological, philosophical, and theological evidence to answer these questions. These interviews are framed within an accessible dialogue between two young people — Eric Johnson and Jennifer Milani – who help explain the experts’ major points and principles. An illustrated, user-friendly, Happiness, The Workbook is also available with summaries, study questions, definitions, biographies, and references.
Interviewees include: Eduardo Verastegui, Dr. Gary Habermas, Dr. John Lennox, Leah Darrow Dr. Jan Holden, Dr. Aaron Kheriaty, John Chavez and our own Fr. Robert Spitzer, S.J., Ph.D.
HAPPINESS, THE WORKBOOK – $12.95
This workbook is designed to accompany the video series, Happiness, The Series. That said, it could be used on it’s own to get a solid basic understanding of how important happiness is in our lives. So many of us have no real idea of how to achieve lasting, pervasive happiness. What makes you happy? Perhaps, like Fr. Spitzer, a good bowl of linguini does the trick. How about 3 hours later? Still happy?
How do we keep the happiness “buzz”. St. Theresa of Avila once said, “There are no sad saints”. H’mmm, That follows along the path of Fr. Spitzer’s Four Levels of Happiness. Start with Linguini and aspire to… well, you’ll have to check it out for yourself. Check out Lesson One here for free.
There are 7 Chapters in the workbook, each corresponding to a DVD episode. There are time stamps in the workbook to tell you exactly where you can find particular spots in the video. This series should be a must for every high school student and their parents. Target level, high school Freshman and above.