University Resources for Students and Campus Ministers
The Magis Center 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:
Simply click on the desired hot link, provided above, to go to the appropriate landing page. Please note, you should check back often as new materials are in continuous development and release.
The Magis Center has five university resources for students and campus ministers in the area of faith and reason:
1. Science, God & Creation (for campus ministry programs)
2. Cosmic Origins – The Documentary (for campus ministry programs)
3. From Nothing to Cosmos (Set of four DVD’s for campus ministry)
4. The Evidence for God from Contemporary Science and Philosophy – Twenty-two on-line college level lectures (for individual on-line use)
5. Happiness, The Series (2 resources for campus ministry programs)
PLEASE NOTE – Though many of the above resources are labeled as campus ministry programs, they are all excellent as individual resources.
1. Science, God and Creation (two resources)
This one hour & fifty-five minute presentation by Fr. Robert J. Spitzer, S.J., Ph.D. explains the evidence for creation, God and the survival of human consciousness (after bodily death) from contemporary scientific studies. It was designed to be used by campus ministers for discussions and education sessions. The Study Guide is comprehensive and answers many questions that students might ask. Fr. Spitzer has presented this talk to universities around the country including Catholic universities, public universities, and non-Catholic private universities (e.g. Harvard, MIT, and USC). The results and feedback have been outstanding. Campus ministers may want to ask an engineering or science student to facilitate a discussion on these materials for their campus. If student facilitators have questions, they can go to the on-line Q&A/discussion forum, and a Magis facilitator will respond to the question. Go to the inside front cover of the study guide mentioned below (b), and you will find a website, access number, and instructions for the on-line forum.
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 by Fr. Robert J. Spitzer, S.J., Ph.D., discussing the evidence for God from contemporary science. 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?
Campus ministers may want to designate a science or engineering student to facilitate two or three chapters per education session. The DVD contains content for about three or four one-hour discussions.
Click here to watch now for FREE
This study guide contains comprehensive questions and answers for each of the seven chapters of Fr. Spitzer’s DVD presentation. It provides more in-depth explanation of the proofs for a beginning of the universe as well as the scientific concepts upon which they are based. Each chapter also contains quotations, references, and biographies from the major scientists contributing to the evidence for God, creation and the survival of consciousness after bodily death (93 pages).
Click here to purchase the Comprehensive Study Guide
2. Cosmic Origins Documentary – $19.95
This documentary can be shown at Catholic campus ministry centers, and provides an interesting introduction to the Science, God and Creation program. It can also be used for prayer meetings study groups in the residence halls. The documentary 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 (designed by the Skotak brothers).
Click here to watch trailer
3. From Nothing to Cosmos (four DVD set with The Workbook +)
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 #1 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 four hour (four DVD) dynamic presentation (with The Workbook +) can be used for a four part presentation in campus ministry centers, as an eight part reflection for home study groups (in residence halls) of for private study. Campus ministers may elect to contact an engineer, scientist, or faculty member to facilitate the presentation of this material. They may be able to help answer questions and facilitate discussion. Answers to the most frequently asked questions can be found in The Workbook + and we believe, with this resource, it can be easily taught without a science background. Send us your tough questions and we’ll be happy to answer them for you. (see 3B below).
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
4. On-line College Lecture Series – The Evidence for God from Contemporary Science and Philosophy (twenty-two lectures)
Campus ministers and college students can use these lectures as a way to study and better understand Fr. Spitzer’s book New Proofs for the Existence of God: Contributions of Contemporary Physics and Philosophy. It gives the best contemporary evidence for God from contemporary physics, contemporary logical-metaphysical proofs, as well as the evidence for human transcendentality from the study of near death experiences and the five transcendental desires. The Study Guide (see below) is also useful for this purpose.
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. 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. 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.
6. Happiness, Suffering, and the Love of God
HAPPINESS, SUFFERING, AND THE LOVE OF GOD – $49.95
Happiness, Suffering, and the Love of God provides answers to some of life’s most vexing questions and dispels many popular misconceptions as it guides us towards authentic and lasting happiness. For those who believe Happiness and Suffering are incompatible, this series of lectures by Father Robert Spitzer has the ability to change lives. Each of the five DVD episodes (shown below) is approximately one hour (episode 5 is 71 minutes). We also produce a workbook, meant to accompany the videos for enhanced retention and reference.
2. Human Transcendence and the Soul
3. The Resurrection of Jesus and Jesus’ Revelation of God’s Unconditional Love
4. Why Would an All-Powerful, All-Loving God Allow Suffering?
5. How to Suffer Well
This series is well suited to upper level high school students, university students and adult parish group studies.
We often seek happiness and find suffering instead. Though happiness is our goal, most people don’t know what they are really looking for. In this video series, Fr. Robert Spitzer, S.J. explores happiness in the revealing light of human transcendence and immortality. Beginning with the commonly held principle that different forms of happiness correspond to different fundamental human desires, Fr. Spitzer guides viewers through four distinct but related sources of happiness (pleasure, achievement, contribution, transcendence), showing how they form a hierarchy and explaining why only the highest level (transcendent happiness) will ultimately fulfill us. Fr. Spitzer explains why an unconditionally loving God would allow suffering and offers guidance on how to suffer well.
Click here to purchase the DVD Set
HAPPINESS, SUFFERING, AND THE LOVE OF GOD – WORKBOOK – $14.95
Students at every level find this workbook to be an invaluable reference tool as well as a great learning / retention aid. This workbook summarizes each lesson and provides useful reflection questions.
Click here to purchase the Workbook