Italy Revealed: Culture, Cuisine,  Church, Countryside

Two back-to-back tours in Italy

May 11–May 23 or May 20–June 1

Visit Italy with University of Texas Professor of the Year Sean Theriault, who teaches a university course on the Catholic Church, and his former student Flaminia Chapman, now a top tour guide in Italy.

Sean has visited Italy many times and has excellent contacts there. He will take us behind the scenes to visit some of Italy’s most treasured sites and to understand the politics of the Catholic Church and the Vatican’s relationships with the United States. A highlight of our four days of sightseeing in Rome will be a private visit for our group of 28 to the Vatican Museum and the Sistine Chapel after closing hours. Sean is also arranging discussions for our group with Vatican and U.S. Embassy officials to enhance our understanding of the church, its inner workings, and its relationships abroad.

Flaminia will take us to stay at her family villa in Umbria and into the countryside to meet the people, tour wonderful small towns, and have an up-close-and-personal look at the art and architecture, the wine, the cuisine, and the countryside. Our week in Umbria and Tuscany is currently scheduled to include visits to Assisi, Perugia, Orvieto, Pienza, Montalcino, and the Abbey of Sant’ Antimo, plus a boat trip on Lake Bolsena, a cooking lesson at our villa in Ficulle, a tour of the remarkable restored 13th-century private Villa la Scarzuola hosted by the owners, and dinner at a winery.

The reason for this strict refund policy is that The Houston Seminar is a small non-profit organization, and cancellations for a trip of this duration and extent would significantly affect its ability to cover expenses.  We therefore strongly recommend that registrants purchase travel insurance upon signing up for the trip.



Welcome to Spring 2018! 

Going Baroque!
Thursday, January 18, 7:30–9:00 p.m. | Christ the King Lutheran Church, 2353 Rice Boulevard at Greenbriar. Parking information distributed to subscribers.


An Intimate Concert of Modern and Contemporary Music of Mexico
Tuesday, January 23, 6:30-8:00 P.M.
Private home. Address to subscribers.

Comida en la Cuidad
Tuesday, February 6, noon | Caracol Restaurant, 2200 Post Oak Boulevard, 77056


Modern Architecture in Mexico City
Tuesday, February 20, 12:00-1:30 P.M. | Moody Center for the Arts, Rice University


Thomas Jefferson: The Essential Democrat
Three Wednesdays, February 21, 28 and March 7, 6:30-8:00 P.M. | Covenant Church, 4949 Caroline, 77004



For additional information about any of our courses, to register offline, or to add your name to our mailing and/or email lists, please contact our adminstrator at  or phone 713.666.9000.