HTI’s collaboration with partners such as Asociación para la Educación Teológica Hispana (AETH), Academy of Catholic Hispanic Theologians of the United States (ACHTUS), and The Hispanic Youth Leadership Academy (HYLA) has led to HTI scholars in the pre-dissertation level gaining experience working at internships. These valuable organizations influence the Latinx community and expand the en conjunto model.
FROM THE DIRECTOR
As the autumn season signals the start of a new academic year, your HTI recognizes the importance of taking time to rejoice in its past and present. We are also mindful to look at what lies ahead.
The first fruits of the season that HTI celebrates are the graduations of eleven brilliant and hardworking scholars in this past year alone—an HTI record! These flourishing scholars and their life-giving work will be honored at the HTI Member Council Meeting in November.
Your HTI also rejoices at the presidential appointments of Dr. Elías Ortega-Aponte (2009-2010 HTI Dissertation Year Scholar) and Dr. Raúl R. Gómez-Ruiz (1999-2000 HTI Dissertation Scholar, HTI Book Prize Winner, and HTI Mentor). Ortega-Aponte became President of Meadville Lombard Theological School this past July after serving as Associate Professor of Afro-Latina/o Religions and Cultural Studies at Drew University Theological School, while Gómez-Ruiz received an appointment to the position of President-Rector of Sacred Heart Seminary and School of Theology.
Continuing in the spirit of collaboration, our featured interviews include a conversation with the Association of Theological Schools. Interested in learning more about a new resource? Read about the new bilingual hymnal introduced by Princeton Theological Seminary, a collaboration with HTI scholars and partners.
The Logros and stories throughout this issue give testament to a fruitful summer for many of the HTI scholars and partners. As we acknowledge the joy, we must also acknowledge the sorrow. We join in prayer for Dr. Juan Martínez, who suffered a stroke on August 23 and is currently recovering. HTI also mourns the passing of Dr. Joyce Tucker who was instrumental in HTI’s work in Princeton, NJ. The HTI familia stands strong in good and bad times.
Your HTI is thrilled with the growth that it has witnessed in the fruits of its graduating scholars, mentors, and programs this academic year, and is excited for the new experiences that lie ahead. If you are in San Diego, CA for the AAR/SBL Annual Meetings this November, please join HTI at its reception at the Omni Hotel on Saturday, November 23, 2019 from 8:00 pmㅡ10:00 pm for the unveiling of a new project.
Rev. Joanne Rodriguez
YOUR EN CONJUNTO ASSOCIATION (ECA) EN ACCIÓN
The main goal of the ECA is to keep HTI graduates and supporters connected, nurtured, and informed. Last month, your ECA launched the ECA Conexión newsletter, which will be issued three times per year, and will keep ECA members up to date on the latest projects, happenings, and opportunities (e.g., AAR/SBL HTI Reception, Open Plaza Blog and Podcast weeks, HTI Professional Development Conference, and regional gatherings). In the first issue of ECA Conexión, your ECA honored the memory of our dear brothers, Dr. Luis D. León and Dr. David Sánchez.
Your ECA invites you to gather in commemorating Día de los Muertos on November 1st, an opportunity to honor en conjunto the loved ones who have predeceased us. We encourage you to share with us what Día de Los Muertos means to you, your families, and your communities. Tag us (@htiprogram) in pictures of your altars, and we will feature them on our Instagram and Facebook.
Last but not least, if you are not a member of the ECA, we would love you to become a part of the association, and to this end, we have updated the annual membership structure as follows:
$15 Suggested for recent graduates, friends of HTI
$30 Suggested for adjuncts, lecturers, friends of HTI
$60 Suggested for tenured and tenure-track faculty, friends of HTI
While suggested membership rates are provided, you may join at whatever amount is most financially comfortable for you, because what is most important is that YOU become an ECA member. Full benefits are available at every rate. Remember that your membership provides varied opportunities to stay connected and to impact current and future generations of Latinx scholars.
ATS Launches Initiative to Build Capacity for Cultural Competence
Association of Theological Schools (ATS) recently launched an initiative to increase its effectiveness in educating racial/ethnic students—and all students—in cultural competence for its member schools. HTI reached out to Dr. Mary H. Young, ATS Director of Leadership Education, about this topic relevant to the HTI community.
HTI: Can you tell us about the new project and its importance?
Dr. Mary Young: Because ATS is keeping its pulse on what is happening in our nation, and with the significantly heightened tensions around race and ethnicity in North America in recent years, ATS, during the 2016 biennium, performed a major evaluation of the impact of fourteen years of the ATS Committee on Race and Ethnicity (CORE) work. Varied data gathering processes helped to shape priorities for the work of CORE moving forward. Focusing on this Cultivating Educational Capacity (CEC) project, ATS will work with an identified group of member schools on educational effectiveness with racially—and ethnically—minoritized students. This program has identified twenty-one schools that: had no previous participation in a major initiative through CORE, reflected ATS diversity in ecclesial affiliation, school type, and school location, and were willing to participate in a two-year process to develop their capacity to more effectively educate racially—and ethnically—minoritized students and white students serving in multiracial, multi-ethnic contexts. The work began last fall with a conference, and teams of three (a senior administrator, a faculty member, and a student) are currently working at their schools to implement educational strategies.
HTI: What are some of the resources ATS made available to the teams?
Young: All twenty-one teams were invited to the conference, which included speakers like ATS executive director, Dr. Frank Yamada, and keynote speaker, Dr. Jared E. Alcántara (2013-2014 HTI Dissertation Scholar). Alcántara led an energy-filled plenary titled “Cultivating Intercultural Competence in Our Students and Ourselves.” He spoke extensively about efforts to gauge connectivity with issues of race and ethnicity, enumerating “school policy, personal style, and practice” as three important levels of engagement. Alcántara described intercultural competence, a way of connecting, as a “deliberate practice.” His presentation educated participants about the larger ecology of current research on intercultural training, and equipped them with a practical toolbox to begin this work in their varying school contexts. Yamada contributed to a broader understanding of race, racism, and intercultural studies, noting the bi-national understanding of race and ethnicity among ATS member schools. Beyond these sessions, ATS continues to resource the participating schools in the following ways:
- Access to coaches or other leaders with experience in the area related to the focus of the school’s strategic idea
- Feedback from members of the CORE Advisory Committee on school strategic initiative plans
- Small seed grants for participating schools to assist with the implementation of program ideas in their strategic plan
- Printed articles, links to websites of best practices, and human resource recommendations
HTI: How will ATS measure the success of this initiative?
Young: Invited institutions begin their work by designing a leadership team that can forge conversations at a variety of institutional levels. Each team includes an academic dean, a faculty member invested in or passionate about diversity and a student who understands the school’s culture and can both provide a critical perspective on their journey at the institution as well as gain feedback from other students. The teams then invite other colleagues and the seminary’s chief leadership team to the process of discerning a particular strategy to address. The Strategic Plan Worksheet submitted to ATS required the approval of the school’s academic dean and/or president. At the end of the two years, the twenty-one schools will be invited to the 2020 Project Dissemination Conference to showcase their work and share impact stories. ATS will use the following criteria to measure success:
- Schools submit a well-defined strategic plan with executable action steps
- Schools submit mid-project progress reports that indicate progress with the strategic plan
- There is a clear indication of investment on the part of the school's senior leadership in both the design and implementation of the plan
- Schools clearly articulate measurable change in their work
- There are tangible resources (e.g., story, best practice, written article, recording, etc.) provided by the schools for public sharing
- Schools articulate capacity built and plan for continuing and expanding upon their work
For more detailed information about this initiative, visit Colloquy Online, a publication of ATS.
Please join us in congratulating Iriann Hausted
(2018-2019 HTI Comprehensive Exams Year Scholar) who passed her comprehensive exams this August! Iriann now enters the proposal stage of the doctoral program at Andrews University. ¡Felicidades!
gratulations to Jorge Juan Rodríguez V
(2019-2020 HTI Proposal and Research Year Scholar) for passing his comprehensive exams and completing the requirements to receive a second Masters, M.Phil. in History. Rodríguez also successfully defended his dissertation proposal. #ABD
Other 2019-2020 HTI Proposal and Research Year Scholars who successfully defended their dissertation proposals are Liam de los Reyes, Eric Sias, Diana Rodríguez Click,
and Cristopher Rios
. Congratulations and happy writing!
tulations to Dr. Yohana Agra Junke
r (2018-2019 Dissertation Year Scholar) on successfully defending her dissertation at Graduate Theological Union
in August. Yohana’s dissertation is titled “Unsettling the Landscape: Appropriation, Representation, and Indigenous Aesthetics in the Land Art of the American Southwest.” Junker shared, “Thank you, Hispanic Theological Initiative! Your academic support and resources, unwavering presence, and deep commitment to providing conditions for students like me to successfully complete their doctoral studies have been fundamental in this journey! I could not have done this without you. May the seeds we have planted together grow in tentacular ways. May the collaboration of our hands touch hearts and minds and bodies alike, so that we may have the courage to work toward transforming the dire conditions that are all around us.” Way to go, Dr. Junker, on this incredible achievement!
Unitas Distinguished Alumni/ae Award received by two HTI graduates
e evening of October 4, Union Theological Seminary
President, Dr. Serene Jones, shared how the Unitas Distinguished Alumni/ae Award is one of the most rewarding events at Union because it bears witness to the faith and perseverance of the Union alumni/ae who exemplify the Seminary’s academic breadth, its diversity and inclusiveness, and the range of vocations its graduates follow. Two HTI graduates, Dr. Teresa Delgado
, and the recently deceased Dr. David Sánchez
were among the five alumni awardees. President Jones was especially grateful for these awardees because each of them had demonstrated true humility and were devoted educators who kept their pulse on the ground.
True to form, Delgado in her response stated, “At least for this moment in my planetary existence, I was put on this earth to be a fearless presence of love in the face of suffering. The precious years I spent in this community–almost a decade and a half–commissioned me into that call of poet, warrior, and prophet. It is nothing short of a priestly call to serve with courage and without fear. It is the life’s purpose of a heart on fire, true to the Spanish root at the core of both heart and courage, with a bit of righteous rage: corazón y coraje
In remembrance of Sánchez, an altar was created for attendees to pay homage. Jorge Juan Rodríguez V
(2019-2020 HTI Proposal and Research Scholar), during the closing prayer encouraged attendees to live into the legacy of pushing boundaries of our disciplines and places of influence.
Dolores Zohrab Liebmann Fund Fellowship Goes to HTI Scholar
Congratulations are in order for Christopher Rios
(2019-2020 Proposal and Research Year Scholar) who was selected as a recipient of the Dolores Zohrab Liebmann Fellowship. The fund provides fellowships to support higher education and graduate studies, and only selects candidates who have exceptional academic records and outstanding promise for achievement in their field of study. Rios is pursuing doctoral studies at the University of Notre Dame
HTI Scholar Awarded Arts & Humanities Fellowship
Kudos to Dr. Felipe Hinojosa
(2008-2009 HTI Dissertation Scholar, HTI Mentor) for earning the Arts and Humanities Fellowship from the Division of Research at Texas A&M University in recognition of his “extraordinary scholarship and creativity!”
2019 Power 50: Dr. Luis Pedraja
to Dr. Luis Pedraja
(1997-1998 HTI Post-Doctoral Fellow, HTI Mentor) for being named to the Worcester Business Journal’s (WBJ) Power 50 Class of 2019 this past May. Each year, WBJ compiles a list of the 50 most influential people in the Central Massachusetts economy. According to the journal, “Those named to the list must not only hold a significant amount of power, but they must wield it in a way to have an outsized influence on the community.” Way to go, Dr. Pedraja!
HTI Scholar Receives LaCugna Award
At this year's Catholic Theological Society of America annual meeting in Pittsburgh, PA, Dr. Antonio (Tony) Alonso
(2016-2017 HTI Dissertation Year Scholar) received the Catherine Mowry LaCugna Award for his essay, "Listening for the Cry: Certeau Beyond Strategies and Tactics,"
published in the July 2017 issue of Modern Theology. The LaCugna Award is given to new scholars for the best academic essay in the field of theology within the Roman Catholic tradition. Alonso writes, "Upon receiving this award named for an incredible young female scholar, I feel especially grateful for the women theologians who have shaped me as a scholar and as a teacher." Congratulations on a well-deserved award, Dr. Alonso!
HTI Scholar Joins the Studiorum Novi Testamenti Societas
To become a member of the Studiorum Novi Testamenti Societas, or Society for New Testament Studies (SNTS), an international society funded in 1939 for the furtherance of New Testament studies internationally, scholars must be nominated by two existing society members. According to the Society’s Constitution, ‘In considering nominations for membership, the Committee shall look for evidence of a high standard of scholarship across more than one major topic or specialism related to the New Testament. A doctoral research degree in New Testament or closely related studies will normally be expected, but in addition, evidence will be sought of multiple publications in well-regarded academic media that make a distinct contribution to knowledge in the discipline. The Committee will define from time to time the specific requirements for such publications.’
Your HTI is thrilled to have one of its graduates, Dr. Eric Barreto
(2008-2009 HTI Dissertation Year Scholar, HTI Mentor, HTI Steering Committee Member), representing the Latinx community in the most prestigious society of New Testament scholars from around the world! Upon his election to SNTS, Barreto shared, “I’m grateful to the scholars who nominated me to this society and am looking forward to learning from so many outstanding international scholars.” Congratulations on this recognition of your scholarship, Dr. Barreto!
Merrimack College Promotes HTI Scholar
Dr. Maria Teresa (MT) Dávila
(2004-2005 HTI Dissertation Year Scholar, HTI Mentor) was promoted to Associate Professor of Practice, Religious and Theological Studies at Merrimack College. Congratulations, MT!
SMU Perkins School of Theology Appoints HTI Scholar as New Intern Program Associate Director
Perkins School of Theology at Southern Methodist University
is pleased to add Dr. Ángel J. Gallardo
(2016-2017 Dissertation Year Scholar) to its team as Associate Director of the Intern Program. In this new role, Gallardo will work alongside Intern Program Co-Directors, Dr. Isabel N. Docampo and Dr. Charles L. Aaron, in challenging Perkins students to live into their vocation through diverse internship experiences. Regarding his new appointment, Gallardo shares: “I hope students will learn to analyze relationships and social spaces, their congregations or agencies, as theological texts. Ultimately, I want students to live into their vocation by employing the breadth of Christian tradition to reflect on and carry out their practice of ministry.” ¡Enhorabuena, Dr. Gallardo!
HTI Scholar, Mentor, and Book Prize Winner Appointed President-Rector of Sacred Heart Seminary and School of Theology
On August 28, 2019, Very Rev. Dr. Raúl Gómez-Ruiz
(1999-2000 HTI Dissertation Scholar, HTI Mentor; HTI Book Prize Winner) was installed
as President-Rector of Sacred Heart Seminary and School of Theology in Hales Corners, WI. Gómez-Ruiz, who succeeds Rev. Thomas Knoebel, will serve a five-year term in this position. While new to the position, he is no stranger to Sacred Heart, having served the institution for 25 years in various roles. Gómez-Ruíz recently completed a six-year term as Vicar General and General Secretary of the Society of the Divine Savior (Salvatorians) in Rome.
Pacific School of Religion (PSR) Welcomes HTI Scholar as Part of Their Faculty
Dr. Yohana Agra Junker
(2018-2019 Dissertation Year Scholar) joined the Pacific School of Religion (PSR) in Berkeley, California this fall as their new Faculty Associate in Theology, Spirituality, and Arts. PSR, a member of Graduate Theological Union
, is grateful to welcome Yohana for a two-year term position. Congratulations, Dr. Junker!
New York Theological Seminary Appoints HTI Scholar to Professorship
Congratulations to Dr. Rafael Reyes III
(2018-2019 Dissertation Year Scholar) on his new professorship at New York Theological Seminary (NYTS)! Reyes began his appointment as Assistant Professor of Theology and Religious Studies and Director of Information Literacy and Library Services on July 1, 2019, teaching in the area of Constructive Theology. Regarding this opportunity Reyes expresses, “As a scholar who writes and teaches on the wisdom that religions offer, I value that NYTS is ecumenical and increasingly multi-faith, engaging Christianity with the rest of the world and its religious experiences.”
HTI Mentor has new role at Seattle University
Professor of Theology and Religious Studies at Seattle University, Dr. Jeanette Rodríguez
(HTI Mentor) has been named interim director of the Institute for Catholic Thought and Culture (ICTC). In conjunction with the new role, President Stephen Sundborg, S.J., approved Rodríguez’s appointment as the Malcolm and Mari Stamper Endowed Chair in Catholic Intellectual and Cultural Traditions. “There is no better person than Dr. Rodríguez to lead ICTC into its next chapter,” Provost Shane P. Martin wrote to the campus community in August. “Since joining our faculty in 1990, she has brought unparalleled intellectual rigor and passion to her teaching, scholarship, and service.”
Rodríguez stated in the Seattle University News, "My hope is to create, in collaboration with colleagues and the rest of the SU community and our neighbors, a conceptual space to lift the best of the Catholic Intellectual Tradition. Together we will draw upon the rich and classical treasures passed down to us, found in the humanities, the arts, science, business, nursing, education, law, lived experience, and Catholic Social Teaching to examine contemporary issues and to help the body of Catholic Thought grow."
ICETE welcomes new International Director
Congratulations to Dr. Michael A. Ortiz
(HTI Member Council Representative) on his new position as Chair and Associate Professor of World Missions and Intercultural Studies at Dallas Theological Seminary
. Ortiz has also been elected to serve as the International Director
of The International Council for Evangelical Theological Education (ICETE).
Raquel C. Feagins
(2019-2020 HTI Proposal and Research Scholar), who serves as Associate Pastor at La Trinidad United Methodist Church in San Antonio, Texas, was elected by her peers as one of four clergy delegates from the Rio Texas Conference to the General Conference of the United Methodist Church to be held in Minneapolis, MN, from May 5-20, 2020. By this election, Rev. Feagins is also a delegate to the South Central Jurisdictional meeting from July 15-18, 2020, in Woodland, Texas, whose purpose is to elect bishops. Feagins is pursuing PhD studies at Oblate School of Theology
HTI Scholar Elected Bishop of the Metro D.C. Synod, ELCA
Please join us in congratulating the Rev. Leila Ortiz
(2015-2016 Dissertation Year Scholar) on her election to the position of bishop of the Metropolitan D.C. Synod of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America! Ortiz was elected on June 15 with 150 votes, and will serve a six-year term. Regarding her new appointment, she shares, “I am beyond words, terrified, excited, and profoundly humbled by the call to serve as bishop of the Metro D.C. Synod, ELCA. I pray that while on this adventure of faith, my leadership and our work together truly reflect the Spirit’s heart and Jesus’ mission here on Earth.”
HTI Scholar Gets Ordained
Congratulations to Chauncey Diego Francisco Handy
(2019-2020 HTI Comprehensive Exam-Year Scholar) who was ordained on September 16th
at Chevy Chase Presbyterian Church in Washington, DC. Handy is a doctoral student at Princeton Theological Seminary.
En Conjunto en Acción
vate a personal transformative experience in a gathering of more than one hundred scholars, faculty, leaders, and mentors is a formidable endeavor, but this is what your HTI hopes for each student attending the HTI Professional Development Conference (PDC) held this year from June 24-27 at member school Princeton Theological Seminary
. Here is what Izak Santana,
entering student at University of Chicago Divinity School,
had to say about his experience:
“For most of my educational life, I have done it alone. My mother, family, and even my teachers had either never attended university or had limited experiences with it. From the start, when paying fees and still losing scholarships due to missing the application date, I was always many rungs behind my peers. However, as I have learned from my family, I found a way to be successful, mostly through force of will and a cold solitude. It is what got me through as a public educator and what helped me begin graduate school.
Though these habits are something that many might look back on with pride, I find myself regretful. In stubbornly going alone, how much unnecessary stress did I endure? How many mistakes did I make or time did I waste that could have been avoided? Oh, Lord, how many opportunities did I fail to see because I did not have a kind voice of guidance in my ear to help me along the path? Upon admission to a doctoral program, I feared it would be much of the same. However, from the moment the HTI Professional Development Conference began, I found that I was mistaken. Each day was a new and rewarding experience blending practicality, knowledge, wisdom, and loving support that bolstered my faith and purpose. I was taught by example that en conjunto
we are stronger. I am both thrilled and confident to begin my journey as a scholar; with the kindest and wisest students, scholars, and mentors in the world at my side, holding me up, and pushing me forward, how could I fail?”
Tale of Two Scholars
the Professional Development Conference (PDC), HTI hosted sixteen dissertation scholars and two editors. For four days, these scholars spent time writing their dissertations with the support of their assigned editor. Among the scholars were Héctor Varela-Rios
and Aizaiah Yong
, who attended the writing workshop with different outlooks and expectations and left with a common outcome.
Having been with HTI since the start of his doctoral program at The University of Chicago
in 2015, Héctor Varela-Rios
had become All But Dissertation (ABD) and was looking forward to the next phase of the HTI program. He shared how HTI created an ideal setting in which to write en conjunto
and at each individual's rhythm:
“We participated, produced, and shared at varying degrees with no expectations except our own. I felt compelled to write, read, and think ‘by the space’ and not by pressure, which is usually not the case.”
New to the HTI familia
was Aizaiah Yong
from Claremont School of Theology
. Not knowing what to expect, Yong concluded that his time spent at the PDC was invaluable and encouraged him to continue to press on toward his goal. He shared, “The HTI staff are world class when it comes to their professionalism and their caring hearts. They are always willing to talk, listen, and share life.” Yong left having written twenty-five pages and made lifelong friendships. He was grateful for the much-needed time for reflection, research, and community.
Both Varela-Rios and Yong received the 2019-2020 HTI/Lilly Dissertation Fellowship
I Graduated. Now What?
“For the past six years of my life, I had a clear plan to follow and that was to finish my PhD,” shared Dr. Lis Valle-Ruiz
(2018-2019 HTI Dissertation Scholar) while attending the HTI’s Early Career Orientation (ECO) a month after completing her PhD at member school Vanderbilt University
. Valle-Ruiz explains, “I was still feeling disoriented after the defense of my dissertation, and my recently accomplished mission did not make me feel like an expert.” These feelings were not unlike those of her seven colleagues attending the ECO. Together at the ECO, these recent graduates learned strategies to navigate the politics of the academy as well as to organize themselves for the future. Each participant prepared a plan outlining priorities, projects, and areas of their lives. Valle-Ruiz’s outline included a flower: “I chose the shape of a flower. In it I shaped four hearts, four areas of my life that I love and want to keep in balance: God, wellness, work as a scholar, and communities of belonging and accountability.” She reflected on her ECO experience: “I left my anxiety and took with me a new flower.”
At the end of the ECO, Dr. Elizabeth Conde-Frazier
(1997-1998 HTI Dissertation Year Scholar, HTI Mentor), one of the faculty members, was asked to share about her experience in developing and co-teaching this new programming: “Working with the participants was a joy. I was floored by the excellent talent that is among us as teachers, community organizers, and entrepreneur scholars. One of our activities was a type of speed dating that involved sharing our insights and questions about syllabi, and the room was shining with the power of all of our scholars sharing out of their coffers of wisdom and commitment. It is a sacred trust that takes place. None of us left the same. I left full of hope and peaceful stillness.”
Do I Need to Explain Myself?
Recently, a seminary student reached out to share the impact that the 2019 Book Prize winner, Nobody Cries When We Die: God, Community, and Surviving to Adulthood,
had on his vocational discernment:
“In the summer after my first year of seminary, I was in the midst of an intensive CPE unit and debating if I should return to school the following fall. My faith was as strong as ever, as was my commitment to the Church, but I was unsure of my place in a predominately-white denomination and seminary. Being the only Latinx seminarian in my class, I found that I consistently had to explain myself to other students, the administration, and those in my PC(USA) ordination process. I had to ask permission to study anything Latinx related, which was considered “extra” to my predetermined Euro-centric studies.
Reading Nobody Cries When We Die: God, Community, and Surviving to Adulthood
by Dr. Patrick B. Reyes was the motivation I needed to continue my studies. The book was more instrumental in my vocational discernment than any doctrine I read that year. In its pages, Dr. Reyes let me know that I was seen, that I belonged, and that I wasn’t alone on this journey. The stories of Latinx seminarians are not reflected in our syllabi, especially for third-culture people such as myself. Dr. Reyes does a fantastic job of weaving his narrative into our everyday experience, calling us to life, and inviting us to continue in la Lucha
─ Christópher Abreu Rosario, MDiv and MAPT, Columbia Theological Seminary 2021
Dr. Patrick Reyes presented the HTI Book Prize Lecture at the 2019 HTI’s Professional Development Conference, on June 25, 2019.
Outside of Your Comfort Zone ...
For some HTI Scholars, writing for the public square is a new experience. This was the case for Dr. Leticia Guardiola-Sáenz (HTI 1998-1999 Dissertation Fellow, HTI Mentor) who had the opportunity to participate in the July Open Plaza workshop. Although she hesitantly accepted the invitation to the workshop, she shared:
“Thanks to HTI for providing such an exciting space for growth, laughter, and sharing! I felt renewed after spending five days in Princeton with my Latinx sisters at the Open Plaza gathering. I should confess that, two weeks prior to our gathering, I was seriously thinking about canceling my trip. I was exhausted, having just ended the academic year, and I was not sure I had the energy to meet so many new people. I received the email with the final list of participants, and noticed out of the ten Latinas attending the event, I only knew two; three I had met once, and the remaining five were unbeknown to me. My highly introverted self wanted to run for cover, while my tiny extrovert self remained intrigued. Our long-awaited dream to have more Latinas in Biblical Studies was becoming real, and now seven out of the ten Latina Biblicists were gathering at Adams House at Princeton Theological Seminary. So, I decided to embrace my tiny extrovert self and embark on this adventure and keep my commitment to the HTI Open Plaza event.
Little did I know that our scholarly activity, besides being hard work, would turn into a happy family reunion. Our first activity, led by Dr. Nelly Rosario and journalist Dr. Macarena Hernández, guided us in an exercise of telling our stories, to discern how best to blog our story. Piece by piece, Macarena and Nelly skillfully stitched a beautiful quilt that made us all feel warm and cozy. In our engagement we discovered that, although there were at least six nationalities represented, we had no borders; we were all in one big welcoming territory. Additionally, I discovered that two of my new sisters, Macarena and Dr. Noemi Palomares, had grown up in the same “frontera” that I did. We were from the same land, just a river awayーone on one side and two “del otro lado.” It was incredible to realize how similar our experiences of both growth and loss were, and in the process of podcasting about some of those experiences, we recovered part of our cultural territory that had been taken away from us. Borders are dangerous and hurtful when you don't share in the common life of both sides.”
For journalist Macarena Hernández, the experience revealed the following:
“I love fronterizos, regardless of what part of the border or what frontera they come from. But to meet two participants who were from my part of the worldㅡthe Rio Grande Valley of Texas ㅡin one workshop is unheard of. Hearing Noemi and Leticia record their podcast about growing up on opposites sides of the Rio Grande, that line between Texas and Mexico, was like taking a journey back to my childhood. Back to when that border was something that fewer people feared, a line that has always been so politicized, yet years ago felt like just a river that separated two places you called home. I loved their podcast. It was an homage to that region and also an education on how religious institutions operated in that part of the world. How religion is also a migrant and how it has shaped Latino families in that region.”
These reflections on Guardiola-Sáenz’s and Hernández’s experience at the July workshop are just one example of what can be expected at HTI’s Open Plaza Blog and Podcast Workshops. These workshops are held during the summer at the HTI offices, and they provide training in blog writing and podcast recording. For more information, follow HTI’s Facebook page so you do not miss the launching of Open Plaza this fall or the opportunity to participate in the next Open Plaza Blog and Podcast Workshop.
HTI SCHOLARS EN ACCIÓN
A Dig Advances Research
Gathering data for her dissertation for the past couple of semesters has allowed Carina Prestes to exercise one of her passions: to bring the archaeological perspective into her research and awareness of early Christianity. During this process, she came across literature that mentions churches in Italy and Croatia with mosaics that are relevant to her field of study. Her thought was, “they look interesting in the books, but I want to visit them personally.”
Fortunately for Prestes, HTI networking funds came at a perfect time for her to join an archaeological excavation in Sicily, Italy. Her visit enabled her to see up close and in person the mosaics in the books she had been studying. She visited the Basilica of San Vitale in Ravenna, Italy and discovered several Early Christian constructions. She was also able to obtain pertinent information that was missing in the literature.
Prestes is grateful for the support and shared, “The discoveries in this field research will nuance my dissertation and provide readers a much more complex and comprehensive understanding of the development of Early Christianity.”
Carina Prestes, 2019-2020 HTI Comprehensive Exams Scholar, is a PhD student at Andrews University.
Gaining International Perspectives from International Connections
Rodrigo de Galiza Barbosa (2019-2020 HTI Dissertation Year Scholar) of Andrews University had the privilege of presenting a portion of his dissertation research at the International Organization for the Study of the Old Testament Congress (IOSOT 2019) in Aberdeen, Scotland. At this event, de Galiza Barbosa received constructive feedback and established contacts with prominent scholars in his field. He expressed particular excitement about connecting with Romanian and African colleagues who are also pursuing PhD studies. Regarding this unforgettable experience, de Galiza Barbosa shares, “We exchanged ideas about our lives as both students and professionals. It was extremely helpful to engage with minds from different cultures and perspectives.” He credits HTI’s model with teaching him to work en conjunto and strengthening his commitment to do collaborative work. Way to go, Rodrigo, for sharing the powerful influence of en conjunto work beyond the HTI community!
Entering HTI Scholars Speak to the Power of Networks
“As an entering PhD student, I had the great privilege to be invited to present my paper on Cyprian of Carthage (3rd Century CE) at the XVIII International Conference on Patristic Studies in Oxford, England this summer. My company included more than 1,000 delegates of accomplished academics and up-and-coming scholars in the field. I received positive and critical insights from my advisor, senior scholars, and peers. This experience was enriching because I gained global colleagues, resources in my field, and energy to continue to strive for excellence. I had the opportunity to be accompanied by my wife, and we were both encouraged by recent graduates who had secured faculty positions. I am beginning my PhD studies with a strong network of scholars in my field and with the determination to continue with focus and excellence.”
Matthew Esquivel (2019-2020 HTI Doctoral Scholar)
The University of Chicago Divinity School
Being a Theologian of El Camino
Summertime does not translate as “break time” for many of the HTI scholars. It is a time where some travel abroad to give lectures, some take time to make steady progress in their writing, and others teach. The reality is, all of them are learning. Gerardo A. Corpeño Nerio is not an exception. He shares:
“I was teaching Introduction to Theology at Denver Seminary for the Hispanic community, and in the middle of the week, a student told me that he needed to leave the class early because he had to go to work. I was a little bit surprised as he had told me that he had to rush to class right after his job. When I questioned him, he responded ‘Yes, but I have two jobs.’ So, I started to ask how many of the students were in a similar situation. It was the case for at least thirty percent of the class.
This anecdote was in a class where I was talking about the importance of being a ‘theologian’ of ‘el camino’ instead of being a theologian of ‘el balcón.’ What the students reminded me is that they already are in ‘el camino,' struggling with a lot of issues, and making a lot of sacrifices to be in that class. This was very challenging for me because it made me realize that the theology they need is a theology that they can relate to their ‘vida cotidiana.’
We ended that class with a fruitful discussion on how their/our condition as migrants can help us to better understand the Bible and theology. We focused on how the most recurrent metaphors in the Bible are metaphors of diaspora or exile, and that the people of God is depicted in the Bible as ‘strangers and sojourners.’ Who other than a migrant could better understand those powerful metaphors?”
Corpeño Nerio is studying at Wheaton College. He is a 2019-2020 HTI Proposal and Research Scholar.
Frying and Eating – Friendo y Comiendo
Friendo y Comiendo is a term used in Puerto Rico when a person is learning while also doing. This is exactly the case for Gonzalo Alers (2019-2020 HTI First Year Scholar), an entering New Testament PhD student at Drew University. Alers was given the opportunity to teach a Greek course at the Seminario Diocesano San Pedro y San Pablo, an Episcopalian-based school in Puerto Rico. He taught Introduction to the New Testament (The Gospels) and Introduction to Koine Greek. Both courses were for priests and lay leaders.
“My experience as a postgraduate educator has been enriching. The opportunity to educate others theologically has been an honor and a privilege from God, and is the best example of the words “Δωρεάν ελάβετε, δωρεάν δότε” (“Freely you have received, freely give”; Matthew 10:8b). Teaching has given me the opportunity to unveil the scriptures to seminarians, while learning from them and nurturing interfaith relations. Every time I teach, I grow as a human being. Each course taught is a new adventure of shared faith, full of diverse nuances that transcend the classroomㅡthe perfect balance between devotion and academic rigor.
I will continue to dream as I continue to sow the good seed of the Gospel, critically and contextually, in the hearts of those who have the task of proclaiming the same message to future generations.”
HTI Biblicist an Anomaly at the University of Oxford
“Coming to the Centre for Criminology at the University of Oxford as a biblical scholar reminds me of what life has been like for me as a Latino from the Texas-Mexico borderlands. Rather than geographical boundaries, I am constantly negotiating disciplinary boundaries, moving from biblical studies to migration studies to criminology,” states, Dr. Gregory Cuéllar (2005-2006 HTI Dissertation Year Scholar, HTI Mentor) who was an Academic Visitor at the Centre for Criminology at the University of Oxford from June 1 through August 20. In his interactions, he found that “for some criminologists here, I am an anomaly. Indeed, what does the Old Testament have to do with criminology? If there is something the Texas-Mexico border has taught me, borders can be transgressed regardless of how daunting or incongruent they may seem.” It did not take long for the Centre to affirm his strategy to research that captivity, exile, faith, sacred texts, and colonizing power are not limited to the ancient world of the Old Testament, but instead a lived reality for many migrants in detention. Cuéllar found his time at the center invigorating and stated, “For me, this trans-disciplinary connection with migration and detention is life-giving and more than anything keeps me in the field of Biblical Studies.”
Cuéllar is thankful to HTI’s partner, the Louisville Institute. Through the Institute, Cuéllar received a Project Grant for Researchers that made this research trip possible.
Greek in Spanish at Bethel
Over the past three years, Dr. Juan Hernández (2004-2005 Dissertation Scholar, HTI Mentor) has been offering Bible seminars in Spanish to pastors and laypersons. Little did he expect a turnout of more than one hundred Latinx pastors and laypersons. This exponential growth led Bethel's dean to approach Hernández about a certificate program, but Hernández pushed back, given that certificates do not provide students with transferable credit. The dean saw the promise of Hernández's recommendation, and together they designed a Greek language course in Spanish to be taught over a two-year period in order to provide students who work full-time the time and space to complete the course and receive transferable credit. Hernández shares, "we developed a win-win course for our Spanish-speaking pastors, laypersons, and their college-aged children who, after seeing their parents take these courses, began to apply to Bethel for their undergraduate degrees. The course is now facilitated by the University and offered to matriculated as well as non-matriculated students."
So far, thirteen students have officially enrolled in Hernández's fully accredited course that began in September. With the exception of two or three students, all are pastors of congregations, so their presence in the classroom represents a variety of church traditions. Of the experience thus far, Hernández shares, "The room was abuzz with excitement over this opportunity to learn Greek in their native language."
HTI Voices Help to Fill in Blind Spots
United Methodist scholars who support the full inclusion of LGBTQIA+ individuals in the life of the church gathered for a public conversation in August in Dallas, TX. This gathering was a response to a Special Session of the General Conference of the United Methodist Church, which adopted the Traditional Plan by a vote of 438-384 to retain restrictions against self-avowed practicing homosexual clergy and officiating at or hosting same-sex marriage ceremonies. Sixty scholars were represented at this gathering titled “United Methodist Scholars for an Inclusive Church Gathering.” Thirty-four presentations were given to develop a biblical and theological basis for dissent to the anti-LGBTQIA+ measures of the “Traditional Plan.”
HTI Scholars contributing to this conversation included Dr. Cristian De La Rosa (2011-2012 HTI Dissertation Scholar, HTI Mentor), Dr. Ángel Gallardo (2016-2017 HTI Dissertation Year Scholar; ECA Board Member), and Rev. Raquel C. Feagins (2019-2020 HTI Proposal and Research Scholar), PhD student at Oblate School of Theology.
De La Rosa presented her paper, “Considerations of Nepantla for Latinx United Methodists,” applying the indigenous Nahuatl term “nepantla” to describe the experience of young Latinx people who exist between the traditional religious cultures of Hispanic congregations and the diversity of LGBTQIA+ affirming academic and church communities. “Nepantla,” which roughly translates to “both/and,” extends beyond the binary conceptualization that has historically characterized the institutional church. De La Rosa suggests that young Latinx people who live on the periphery of these two communities have multifaceted perspectives of God from which we can all benefit. She concludes by reminding us that “when we limit our Christian understandings, we limit our understanding of God. Our attitudes and practices limit God.”
According to Feagins, the participation of HTI scholars in this event was important because “scholars and clergy of color are able to point out blind spots and the need for intersectional justice in a way that is sometimes overlooked by others.”
Is Nonviolence a Thing of the Past?
Not for the Catholic Church. Nonviolence is a vital conversation topic for the Vatican’s Dicastery for Promoting Integral Human Development and Pax Christi International's Catholic Nonviolence Initiative. In April, they gathered peacemakers, theologians, archbishops, bishops, educators, and those in pastoral ministry for a consultation in Rome on the theme, “Path of Nonviolence: Towards a Culture of Peace.” Given the current situations of conflict and violence, participants engaged in dialogue about the roots of violence as well as the hope for peace and reconciliation, and reflected on paths to a conversion to nonviolence. They noted that nonviolence is not only a method but also a way of life, a way to protect and care for the conditions of life for today and tomorrow. Dr. Jeanette Rodriguez (HTI Mentor) shared that she was impressed with the level of engagement and commitment to nonviolence by such a diverse group of scholars, and felt honored and blessed to be counted among them. Participants also represented nations from around the world including Mexico, Venezuela, Costa Rica, Colombia, Honduras, Brazil, Canada, the United States, Uganda, Philippines, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Fiji, South Sudan, Kenya, Nigeria, Ethiopia, Palestine, the United Kingdom, France, and Italy.
For Bruno Marie Duffé, Secretary of the Dicastery, “nonviolence and peace call us to a conversion to receive and to give, to gather and to hope. These conversations fill our hearts and minds with a consideration of the dignity of each personㅡyoung people, women and men, people who are impoverished, citizens and leaders.” “The participation of the Dicastery in this workshop significantly supports the work of the Catholic Nonviolence Initiative," said Marie Dennis, Co-President of Pax Christi International. "We are touched by the interventions from all the participants, who reiterated the importance of nonviolence rooted in respect, patience, and spiritual strength."
Participants will continue their dialogue and research, and their reflections will be shared with Pope Francis, with the hope for a possible encyclical that will address these issues and challenges and will promote nonviolent initiatives as a way for mediation, rights, hope, and love.
En Conjunto Writing in the Classroom
“In all my classes, I share with students my writing and creative scholarly projects that specifically relate to the theme of the class,” shared Dr. Theresa Yugar regarding her teaching philosophy. So while Yugar worked on her submissions for Voices from the Ancestors: Xicanx and Latinx Spiritual Expressions and Healing Practices, she invited her students to submit a written piece to be considered for the publication. Student Jocelyn Vargas welcomed the opportunity, and en conjunto they reflected on a theme that embraced her identity as a Latinx young adult growing up in a home where US immigration issues are a constant source of stress and anxiety. After deep reflection, Vargas’ submitted ‘Life Embracing Death,’ a reflection on the importance of Día de los Muertos in her home. Yugar is very proud of Vargas’s submission. Yugar shared, “In this way, I modeled the commitment to HTI's mission to cultivate Latinx students to aspire to achieve higher education, increase the presence of Latinx leaders on college campuses, and provide spaces for the exchange of ideas between faculty and students in theological and religious education.”
Yugar, a 2011-2012 HTI Dissertation Year Scholar, currently teaches within the Chicana/o and Latina/o Studies Department at California State University, Los Angeles.
“Preaching Luke Today” in Korea with Dr. Eric Barreto
Rev. Dr. Yong–Kyu Kang, senior pastor of Hanshin Presbyterian Church in Seoul, South Korea, one of the largest churches in the Presbyterian Church in the Republic of Korea, received his Doctorate of Ministry from San Francisco Theological Seminary. As a result, Kang believes that all Korean ministers deserve access to quality theological formation. To ensure that this happened, in 2007 he began the annual Hanshin-SFTS Symposium for Korean pastors, an event that focuses on cutting-edge theology and counts with the participation of top-notch scholars. In June, the Thirteenth Annual Hanshin Theological Symposium was held in Wonju, South Korea, 70 miles north of Seoul. The event drew more than 550 ministers and lay leaders from various denominations across the country for four days of lectures, worship, and communion.
Dr. Eric Barreto (2008-2009 HTI Dissertation Year Scholar, HTI Mentor, and Steering Committee Member) was invited by Kang to be a keynote speaker. Barreto delivered three lectures on the theme, “Preaching Luke Today.” During this four-day event, Korean pastors had the opportunity to reflect deeply on theological questions for the sake of producing enriched sermons and potential resources for ministry. In emphasizing academic theological training, the symposium also teaches Korean ministers how to improve their ministry skills as well as strengthen congregational ties.
Barreto expressed gratitude to Kang and the Hanshin Theological Symposium for his unique experience in South Korea: “The hospitality I felt throughout the visit and the lessons I learned about the history and faith of Korean Christians were extraordinary. This visit was a true gift.”
What Does the Sanctified Life Look Like?
While various theologians have explored this question throughout history, Dr. Leopoldo Sánchez (2002-2003 HTI Dissertation Year Scholar, HTI Mentor) is one of the few scholars in the Lutheran Church Missouri Synod who has devoted his scholarship to answering it. In his most recent publication, Sculptor Spirit: Models of Sanctification from Spirit Christology, Sánchez carefully crafts a Spirit Christology, which considers the role of God’s Spirit in the life and mission of Jesus and leads to five models of sanctification that can help Christians discern how the Spirit is at work in our lives. Two of these models, namely, the sacrificial and hospitality, propose ways of thinking about holiness that are not merely personal, but communal, socially engaged, and thus attentive to poor, marginalized, and immigrant neighbors.
Since the book’s publication, Sánchez has been busy presenting at pastoral and church worker conferences and workshops in Roanoke, Virginia; Grand Junction, Colorado; Spokane, Washington; St. Louis, Missouri; and Daytona Beach, Florida. He also had the opportunity to give a lecture on his book at Wheaton College while he was visiting his HTI mentee, Gerardo Corpeño (2019-2020 HTI Proposal & Research Scholar). Participants in these events have shared their appreciation for Sánchez's use of Spirit Christology, which looks at Jesus's identity as the bearer and giver of God's Spirit, as a theological framework to promote practical conversations about spiritual formation and ways of embody sanctification in North America today.
Sánchez’s future engagements include leading a spiritual retreat in Cannon Beach, Oregon; plenaries at the CICW Worship Symposium, Grand Rapids, Michigan; and a panel discussion on the book in the Ecumenical Studies session at the Annual Meeting of the Society for Pentecostal Studies in Costa Mesa, California.
"It has been a great pleasure to learn from and share my research and its practical implications with such diverse audiences across the country,” Sánchez shares.
Violence as a Positive Force?
“The question as to whether or not violence can be a positive force is still ruminating in my mind,” shared Dr. Rubén Rosario Rodríguez (2003-2004 HTI Dissertation Year Scholar and HTI Mentor) after having a conversation with Dr. Reuven Firestone who pointed out how from an evolutionary perspective, violence could be viewed as a positive force, one of the mechanisms of natural selection. While most post-Holocaust theologians and ethicists assume that violence is universally negative and contrary to the will of God, Firestone’s argument challenged and pushed scholars to rethink their presentations and assumptions.
Rosario Rodríguez lectured on “The Concept of Violence in Christianity” and touched on the question above by exploring the tension between the nonviolence of Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount and the liberating or revolutionary violence in the theologies of Saint Óscar Romero and Dr. James Cone. Rosario Rodríguez highlights the real destruction that violence has played throughout history. The location of the conference, Nuremberg, Germany, site of the infamous Nazi Party rallies and location of the Nazi war crime trials after World War II, was not lost on him. Rosario Rodriguez shared, “After the conference, I spent the day exploring the city, including a visit to the courtroom where the Nuremberg trials were held and was shocked—even overwhelmed—by the city's tragic history. Yet, I was heartened by the interfaith discussion, and especially by the commitment of our German hosts to fostering interfaith dialogue and cooperation.”
The Key Concepts in Interreligious Discourse, The Concept of Violence and the Concept of Just War in Judaism, Christianity and Islam conference was held on September 18-20, 2019, at the Friedrich-Alexander University Erlangen-Nuremberg.
HTI MEMBER SCHOOLS EN ACCIÓN
New Spanish Hymnal Building Bridges
Recently, a new hymnal made its way to the HTI offices. The hymnal, Santo, Santo, Santo: Cantos para el pueblo de Dios/ Holy, Holy, Holy: Songs for the People of God is the culmination of GIA Publications' partnership with Calvin Institute of Christian Worship to create a bilingual resource for ecumenical Christian contexts. Dr. Martin Tel, the C.F. Seabrook Director of Music at Princeton Theological Seminary, who had already worked on another Calvin Institute project, Psalms for All Seasons: A Complete Psalter for Worship, was asked to be a consultant for this project.
Suzette Aloyo, HTI’s Office Coordinator, had an opportunity to speak with Tel about this project.
Aloyo: How did you come to be involved in this project?
Tel: Besides my involvement in the previous project, Calvin Institute wanted to collaborate with Princeton Theological Seminary because of HTI's location, as well as the Latinx resources in the library, and upcoming conferences that include speakers like Dr. Justo González.
Aloyo: How did you find this experience and process?
Tel: It was certainly a wonderful stretch but partly familiar territory since I had consulted on the prior project. Calvin Institute wanted many psalms in this book and also many bilingual resources. Over the years, as I have designed liturgies at Princeton, I have hired Spanish-speaking students at the Seminary to sing and flag errors as we prepare worship bulletins. These students helped identify words and/or phrases in Spanish that might not translate between cultures. For example, a Spanish phrase in Mexico may not have the same meaning in Chile.
I also learned a lot from the Spanish editor on this project, María Cornou, who is an amazing historian with respect to translation. She helped me realize that we, meaning Anglos, habitually think of translation as going from English to Spanish; but obviously, translation also goes from Spanish to English, and it can also be parallel to a third language. I knew I would learn a lot, I just did not realize how much.
Additionally, I was energized by and loved our singing sessions with the students. The students would bring out their guitars and begin to sing praise songs and choruses that were psalms from different contexts. This intrigued me and gave me traction. Some of the Spanish-language songs we had the students sing were unfamiliar to them. They really liked them but these were not their “heart songs.” It was important to include the songs that, to me, seemed to spring from their souls.
Aloyo: I understand you had an opportunity to test the hymnal in the Seminary community. How did that go?
Tel: The worship songs from the bilingual hymnal were sung during special weekly chapel services in the fall of 2018. On those days, Seminary offices were closed during the services and the entire community of students, faculty, administration, and staff were invited to Chapel for worship followed by a communal lunch. The response from the many Spanish-speaking Seminary workers was positive. They shared that the choruses moved them and transcended Catholic and Protestant divides. The English-speaking workers were able to understand the Spanish hymns because an English translation was provided for every hymn. This allows the hymnal to not only be a tool for singing but a resource for understanding and building bridges.
Immigration at the Forefront for Old Testament Scholar
With the heightened tensions between the United States and immigrants at the border, it is no wonder that Dr. M. Daniel Carroll Rodas (HTI Mentor and Steering Committee Member), eminent Old Testament scholar and author of several monographs on immigration and the Bible, was invited to lecture and teach at institutions across the globe this summer. On July 16-19, Carroll Rodas lectured with Dr. Jean-Pierre Ruiz (HTI Mentor) on “La Biblia y la problemática migratoria actual,” at the Congreso Internacional de Estudios Bíblicos in Buenos Aires, Argentina, where more than 400 Latinx scholars gathered from across the continent with a few scholars from the United States and Europe. The event gave Carroll Rodas the opportunity to teach, share, and learn with a diverse group of scholars and activists.
Next on his agenda, Carroll Rodas was invited to speak at the annual academic year kick-off event at the Charlotte campus of Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary on August 24th. He gave a one-hour presentation titled “Exploring What the Bible Has to Say about Immigration.” The response was so favorable that the question and answer period exceeded the allocated time.
In September, Carroll Rodas also met with two student groups at Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary in Wake Forest, NC. At the first presentation, which took place at the monthly PhD colloquium, he spoke about what it means to be a Latino biblical scholar who focuses on migration and immigration. Then, at the student group “Biblical Languages for Everyone,” he lectured on “The Theology is in the Details!—Literary Sensitivity in Reading Amos.”
Carroll Rodas is also scheduling a conference at member school Wheaton College in the spring titled “Global Migration and Christian Faith: Implications for Identity and Mission.”
HTI Consortium Member Schools Celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month
National Hispanic Heritage Month is a time when people in the United States intentionally recognize and celebrate the rich histories, cultures, and contributions of Hispanics and Latinxs to the country. Past and present Hispanic influencers continue to expand our horizons and cultivate a shared value of participation and activism. Below are some of the activities that took place at HTI member schools.
The James White Library at Andrews University celebrated Hispanic Heritage Month with an elaborate display of Hispanic cultural items, pictures, memorabilia, paintings, books, DVDs. Other exhibits have been carefully selected and organized to mark the occasion.
“Going Forward without Forgetting,” a banquet hosted by the Hispanic Student Association in October 2019, featured Saul Flores, who spoke about how he embarked upon the “Walk” in the summer of 2010, spending three months walking, hitchhiking, hiding, and sleeping on the ground in ten countries spanning 5,000 miles. Audiences had the opportunity to relive The Walk of the Immigrants project along with Saul, as well as develop a deeper understanding of the struggles, hardships, joy, and hope that immigrants experience on their journey.
Fuller Theological Seminary
The Centro Latino hosted a conference in October 2019 titled “Una Comunidad Sanadora: La iglesia latina y la salud integral de la familia.” Designed with pastors, lay leaders, and seminary students in mind, its purpose was to create a safe space to motivate pastoral care and leadership of Latinx churches by addressing the spiritual, mental, emotional, and physical health of these communities. The conference also explored the role of the Holy Spirit in the divine process of healing and restoration.
Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary
The Hispanic-Latinx Center at Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary welcomed Dr. José David Rodríguez (HTI Selection Committee Member and Steering Committee Member) who gave a lecture titled “Hanging on a Ghetto Cross: A Latinx Soteriology from the Perspective of the Works of Piri Thomas” in October 2019. The lecture was an attempt to develop a Christian teaching of the doctrine of salvation based on the literary works of Piri Thomas, a descendent of Puerto Rican and Cuban parents from New York City’s Spanish Harlem.
SMU Perkins School of Theology
“The Art of Resilience: Latinx Public Witness for Troubled Times” (September 20—September 21): The Center for the Study of Latino/a Christianity and Religions of Perkins School of Theology/SMU hosted a free, two-day event that gathered Latinx scholars, artists, religious leaders, and community activists to explore how academic research, religious practices, the arts, and public engagement address the current social climate of Latinx-phobia. Keynote speakers included Dr. Daisy Machado (former HTI Director and HTI Mentor) and Dr. Fernando Segovia (HTI Mentor).
Other notable events that honored Latinx culture for National Hispanic Heritage Month took place at Boston University, Emory University, Vanderbilt University, and Wheaton College.
HTI PARTNERS EN ACCIÓN
Doing Teología En Conjunto at HSP
Working with HTI for more than two years as a Student-Aide and providing support for the Professional Development Conference, I was eager to apply to attend the Hispanic Summer Program (HSP) in San Antonio, TX at Oblate School of Theology. Upon my acceptance, I was excited at the opportunity to build a community with other Latinx students studying Religion and Theology at the Masters level. I wanted to experience the same supportive space among my own academic peers that I have seen with the HTI scholars. Encountering familiar faces of HTI Alumni teaching courses made it even more welcoming.
The students, professors, and HSP staff were uplifting, and the encouragement was contagious. Jorge Juan Rodríguez V (2019-2020 HTI Proposal and Research Year Scholar), HSP Social Media and Events Coordinator, joined me in a study session, and while we typed our way through our assignments, Jorge completed his final comprehensive exam. It was a joy to witness him move forward in his program. It gave hope to those of us aspiring to do PhD work.
In the classroom, we explored our differences in order to understand, learn, and support one another. Our class was an ecumenical group of Catholics, mainline Protestants, and Pentecostals. Several of us cherish multiple faith traditions making for a unique class dynamic. Dr. Adriana Nieto (2008-2009 HTI Dissertation Scholar) was the first Latina professor I ever had. Nieto’s course, Re-membering the Borderlands: Gender, Trauma, and Healing, highlighted her wisdom and humor that empowered us to write and think from our own experiences and historias.
During the two weeks at HSP, I felt the support of my classmates, professors, and new friends. It was uplifting to share our struggles of embracing our identities at predominantly white institutions. HSP provides a one-of-a-kind experience of theological education done latinamente. Every Latinx seminarian should attend HSP – it is a life-changing experience.
Leslie Giboyeaux, HTI Student-Aide
A Clan Mother's Call: Reconstructing Haudenosaunee Cultural Memory
New Hispanic Initiatives Highlighted in Summer Issue of In Trust Magazine
The summer issue of the In Trust Magazine was filled with Hispanic resources from cover to cover. In Trust highlighted the Red de Entidades Teológicas (ReDET) (Network of Theological Entities), a new program launched by Asociación para la Educación Teológica Hispana (AETH) at the Juan Figueroa Umpierre Bible Institute in Bayamon, Puerto Rico. In the article, Dr. Elizabeth Conde-Frazier (1997-1998 HTI Dissertation Year Scholar, HTI Mentor, HTI Advisory Committee Member), ReDET coordinator, explained how ReDET is a community created online for providing mutual support, collaborating, and finding solutions to common problems in theological education.
Additionally, the issue introduced the new bilingual hymnal titled Santo, Santo, Santo: Cantos para el pueblo de Dios/Holy, Holy, Holy: Songs for the People of God, for ecumenical Christian context published by GIA Music as a fantastic resource for congregations and seminaries. Dr. Martin Tel, a consultant to the project, shared, “these resources will help schools and congregations be nimble about being bilingual or even trilingual in order for their worship to thrive.” HTI graduates Dr. Rubén Arjona (2016-2017 HTI Dissertation Year Scholar), and Dr. Antonio E. Alonso (2016-2017 HTI Dissertation Year Scholar) contributed by way of translations, music, etc. HTI Consortium Member School, Princeton Theological Seminary, will have this hymnal available for its chapel services beginning in fall 2019.
This issue also included an interview with Dr. Marty Harris, founder of the Hispanic Association of Christian Higher Education, on how schools can become Hispanic Serving Institutions, which can make them eligible for federal grants.
ACHTUS, Thirty Years en la lucha
“For the past four female presidents of the Academy of Catholic Hispanic Theologians of the United States (ACHTUS), social issues have been at the forefront, and I wanted to continue that legacy as the fifth female president,” shared Dr. Neomi DeAnda (2009-2010 HTI Dissertation Year Scholar, HTI Mentor). This year, ACHTUS celebrated its thirtieth anniversary with a colloquium titled, “Together en la lucha: Seeking Justice Through Religion and Human Rights?” This topic was chosen because of ACHTUS’s commitment to justice from the purview of Latinx scholars of religion, with particular attention to human rights and the various intricacies of what human rights may mean for our various communities, especially during this heightened time of discrimination and hatred toward Latinx peoples. Additionally, DeAnda stressed that she had not seen much discussion regarding Latinx, religion, and human rights, so her hope is that these panel discussions will begin to fill that void.
Several members of HTI’s familia presented at this year’s colloquium including:
Dr. Néstor Medina (2006-2007 HTI Dissertation Year Scholar, Book Prize Winner, Perspectivas Senior Editor), who became an honorary member of ACHTUS during this year's colloquium.
Dr. Jeremy Cruz (2010-2011 HTI Dissertation Year Scholar).
Dr. Jacqueline Hidalgo (2007-2008 HTI Dissertation Fellow, Steering Committee Member).
Plans are in the works to publish the papers presented at the colloquium in ACHTUS’s Journal of Hispanic/Latino Theology (JHLT).
ACHTUS provided an open house opportunity for partner organizations to meet with colloquium participants. DeAnda was grateful to Dr. Peter Casarella and Dr. Ahida Pilarski (HTI Steering Committee Members) for representing HTI and providing a truly hospitable environment.
(SUNY series in Critical Haudenosaunee Studies)
by Dr. Jeanette Rodriguez
and Dr. Iakoiane Wakerahkats:teh
SUNY series in Critical Haudenosaunee Studies
SUNY Press (September 1, 2017)
Indigenous communities around the world are gathering to both reclaim and share their ancestral wisdom. Aware of and drawing from these social movements, A Clan Mother’s Call articulates Haudenosaunee women’s worldview that honors women, clanship, and the earth. Over successive generations, First Nation people around the globe have experienced and survived trauma and colonization. Extensive literature documents these assaults, but few record their resilience. This book fulfills an urgent and unmet need for First Nation women to share their historical and cultural memory as a people. It is a need invoked and proclaimed by Clan Mother, Iakoiane Wakerahkats:teh, of the Mohawk Nation. Utilizing ethnographic methods of participatory observation, interviewing and recording oral history, the book is an important and useful resource for capturing “living” histories. It strengthens the cultural bridge and understanding of the Haudenosaunee people within the United States and Canada.
Finding Beauty in the Other: Theological Reflections across Religious Traditions
by Dr. Peter Casarella
, Dr. Sirry Mun'im
The Crossroad Publishing Company (December 3, 2018)
Finding Beauty in the Other explores how beauty can be found in religions and cultures. It also views how the beauty of the Christian gospel should be communicated in different religious and cultural settings. This valuable collection of essays features a host of highly respected scholars, presenting a unique treatment of the concept of beauty as seen in a variety of religions and cultures. These include Catholicism, Hinduism, Buddhism, and Islam. In addition, beauty as seen in various African cultures is discussed.
Reading In-Between: How Minoritized Cultural Communities Interpret the Bible in Canada
by Dr. Néstor Medina
, Dr. Alison Hari-Singh and Dr. HyeRan Kim-Cragg
Pickwick Publications (February 18, 2019)
This volume presents a tapestry of narratives in which the lived experiences of eight racially minoritized theologians and biblical scholars are woven together to present an interdisciplinary exploration of the direct impact that ethnocultural traditions have in shaping the way people read and interpret the biblical text. Moving beyond traditional approaches to biblical hermeneutics steeped in Euro-normativity, Canadian scholars from Latino/a, Chinese, Korean, Indian, Cree, and AfriCaribbean backgrounds draw on their respective locations to articulate how their communities engage the Bible. Together they show that ethnicity and cultural tradition enrich how different communities weave their life stories with the biblical text in hope of finding wisdom within it.
By focusing on questions rooted in their particular traditions, these diverse hermeneutical engagements show narrative to be central to the interpretive task within diverse ethnocultural communities. ""This volume represents the first attempt to present and analyze the vision and mission of minoritized reading and criticism of the Bible in Canada. It is a volume that was sorely needed, and it is a volume that is keenly welcomed. On the one hand, the project brings to the fore the ways in which minoritized communities from Asia, Latin America, and the Caribbean approach and deploy the biblical texts in their lives as migrants. On the other hand, the project points to the way in which minoritized critics from these communities can employ such ethnocultural models and strategies to unsettle and transform the way of dominant biblical criticism in Canada. In a national situation marked by immigrant diversity and immigrant marginalization, the volume raises a cry for the value of minoritized community reading and minoritized biblical criticism. It is, to my mind, an excellent contribution to the ever-expanding critical literature on minoritized reading and criticism on a global level. Well done, indeed."" —Fernando F. Segovia, Vanderbilt University "
"A reading of the biblical narrative that forefronts 'racialized, marginalized, and immigrant Christians in the Canadian context' is timely within multicultural Canada in the wake of the findings of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission that focused on our mistreatment of Indigenous peoples. This hermeneutic of 'reading in-between,' with its rich compendium of ethno-cultural voices, each reading the Bible within a specific context, is equally timely for the cultural mosaic within the whole of North America and beyond."" —Dorcas Gordon, University of Toronto
Empire, the British Museum, and the Making of the Biblical Scholar in the Nineteenth Century: Archival Criticism
by Dr. Gregory L. Cuéllar
Palgrave Macmillan; 1st ed. 2019 edition (August 24, 2019)
Since the modern period, the field of biblical studies has relied upon libraries, museums, and archives for its evidentiary and credentialing needs. Yet, absent in biblical scholarship is a thorough and critical examination of the instrumentality of the discipline’s master archives for elite power structures. Addressing this gap in biblical scholarship lies central to this book. Interrogated here is a premier repository or master archive of the discipline: the British Museum. Using an assemblage of critical theories from archival discourse to postcolonial studies, space theory to governmentality studies, the focal point of this book is at the intersections of the Museum’s rise to scientific prominence, the British Empire, and the conferring of scientific authority to modern biblical critics in the nineteenth century. Gregory L. Cuéllar initiates a season of historicization of the master archives of biblical studies and archival criticism.
A History of Early Christian Literature
by Dr. Justo L. González
Westminster John Knox Press (August 27, 2019)
Historical events have long been the standard lens through which scholars have sought to understand the theology of Christianity in late antiquity. The lives of significant theological figures, the rejection of individuals and movements as heretical, and the Trinitarian and christological controversies—the defining theological events of the early church—have long provided the framework with which to understand the development of early Christian belief. In this groundbreaking work, esteemed historian of Christianity Justo González chooses to focus on the literature of early Christianity. Beginning with the epistolary writings of the earliest Christian writers of the second century CE, he moves through apologies, martyrologies, antiheretical polemics, biblical commentaries, sermons, all the way up through Augustine’s invention of spiritual autobiography and beyond. Throughout he demonstrates how literary genre played a decisive role in the construction of theological meaning. Covering the earliest noncanonical Christian writings through the fifth century and later, this book will serve as an indispensable guide to students studying the theology of the early church.
The Practices of Christian Preaching: Essentials for Effective Proclamation
by Dr. Jared E. Alcántara
Baker Academic (September 17, 2019)
Leading homiletician Jared Alcántara offers a practice-centered, collaborative, technologically innovative, next-generation introductory preaching textbook. The book breaks new ground by adopting a practice-based approach to teaching preaching and by using innovative technological delivery to enhance the educational experience of learners.
Alcántara introduces the basics of Christian preaching and emphasizes the skills preachers must cultivate throughout their lives. He shows that preachers can learn effective preaching by paying keen attention to five key competencies: conviction, context, clarity, concreteness, and creativity. Featuring the perspectives of a diverse team of collaborators, The Practices of Christian Preaching is designed to prepare effective communicators for the church's multicultural future.
Call-outs in the book direct readers to a companion website for further information or practice. The online resources include audio and video sermons, video responses from the author, and contributions from collaborators, enabling Alcántara to coach students by showing them instead of just telling them. A Spanish language edition will be forthcoming.
by Dr. Robyn Henderson-Espinoza
, foreword by Nancy Elizabeth Bedford
Fortress Press (October 1, 2019)
In this searing and personal book, intellectual activist and theologian Robyn Henderson-Espinoza bridges the gap between academia and activism, bringing the wisdom of the streets to the work of scholarship, all for the sake of political liberation and social change for marginalized communities. This is an invitation—a powerful and provocative call-to-action—to academic theologians to the work of social activism through movement building. Activist Theology summons all to take up radical acts of labor that uses scholarship and contemplation to build bridges with difference and make connections of solidarity, rooted in collective action. Featuring poetry by Brittini "Ree Belle" Gray, this rich and interdisciplinary work draws on continental philosophy, queer theology, and critical class theory in accessible and artful ways, using story, personal narratives, and sharp cultural analysis to bring clarity to the methods, sources, and objectives of activist theology. This is a key step forward in the contemporary conversation about theology and social action and will be essential reading for all those who want to see theology and ethics break new ground in the work of justice, hope, and liberation for all.
T&T Clark Handbook of Political Theology
by Dr. Rubén Rosario Rodríguez
T&T Clark; 1 edition (October 3, 2019)
Other Contributors from the HTI familia include:
Dr. Luis N. Rivera-Pagan
Dr. Raimundo Barreto
Dr. Michael E. Lee
Dr. Neomi DeAnda
Dr. MT Dávila
Dr. Oscar García-Johnson
The T&T Clark Handbook of Political Theology is a comprehensive reference resource informed by serious theological scholarship in the three Abrahamic traditions. The engaging and original contributions within this collection represent the epitome of contemporary scholarship in theology, religion, philosophy, history, law, and political science, from leading scholars in their area of specialization.
Voices from the Ancestors: Xicanx and Latinx Spiritual Expressions and Healing Practices
Comprised of five sections that illuminate the rise and relevance of political theology, this handbook begins with the birth of contemporary “political theology,” and is followed by discussions of historical resources and past examples of interaction between theology and politics from all three Abrahamic traditions. The third section surveys the leading figures and movements that have had an impact on the discipline of political theology in the twentieth and twenty-first centuries; and the contributors then build on previously discussed historical resources and methods to engage with contemporary issues and challenges, emphasizing interreligious dialogue, even while addressing concerns of relevance to a particular faith tradition. The volume concludes with three essays that look at the future of political theology from the perspective of each Abrahamic religion.
Complete with select bibliographies for each topic, this companion features the most current overview of political theology that will reach a broader, global audience of students and scholars.
by Dr. Lara Medina
and Dr. Martha R. Gonzales
University of Arizona Press (October 8, 2019)
Other Contributors from the HTI familia include:
Dr. Ann Hidalgo
Dr. Jacqueline Hidalgo
Dr. Jennifer Owens-Jofré
Dr. Lauren Frances Guerra
Dr. Neomi DeAnda
Dr. Theresa Torres
Dr. Theresa Yugar
Voices from the Ancestors brings together the reflective writings and spiritual practices of Xicanx, Latinx, and Afro-Latinx womxn and male allies in the United States who seek to heal from the historical traumas of colonization by returning to ancestral traditions and knowledge.
Migration and Public Discourse in World Christianity (World Christianity and Public Religion) Paperback
This wisdom is based on the authors’ oral traditions, research, intuitions, and lived experiences—wisdom inspired by, and created from, personal trajectories on the path to spiritual conocimiento, or inner spiritual inquiry. This conocimiento has reemerged over the last fifty years as efforts to decolonize lives, minds, spirits, and bodies have advanced. Yet this knowledge goes back many generations to the time when the ancestors understood their interconnectedness with each other, with nature, and with the sacred cosmic forces—a time when the human body was a microcosm of the universe.
Reclaiming and reconstructing spirituality based on non-Western epistemologies is central to the process of decolonization, particularly in these fraught times. The wisdom offered here appears in a variety of forms—in reflective essays, poetry, prayers, specific guidelines for healing practices, communal rituals, and visual art, all meant to address life transitions and how to live holistically and with a spiritual consciousness for the challenges of the twenty-first century.
– by Dr. Afe Adogame (Editor), Dr. Raimundo Barreto
(Editor), Dr. Wanderley Pereira Da Rosa (Editor)
: World Christianity and Public Religion (Book 2)
: Fortress Press (November 5, 2019)
Although humans have always migrated, the present phenomenon of mass migration is unprecedented in scale and global in reach. Understanding migration and migrants has become increasingly relevant for world Christianity. This volume identifies and addresses several key topics in the discourse of world Christianity and migration. Senior and emerging scholars and researchers of migration from all regions of the world contribute chapters on central issues, including the feminization of international migration, the theology of migration, south-south migration networks, the connection between world Christianity, migration, and civic responsibility, and the complicated relationship between migration, identity and citizenship. It seeks to give voice particularly to migrant narratives as important sources for public reasoning and theology in the 21st century.
Ecological Solidarities: Mobilizing Faith and Justice for an Entangled World
by Dr. Krista E. Hughes (Editor), Dr. Dhawn B. Martin (Editor), Dr. Elaine Padilla
World Christianity (Book 1)
Penn State University Press; 1 edition (November 7, 2019)
Operating on the premise that our failure to recognize our interconnected relationship to the rest of the cosmos is the origin of planetary peril, this volume presents academic, activist, and artistic perspectives on how to inspire reflection and motivate action in order to construct alternative frameworks and establish novel solidarities for the sake of our planetary home.
The Rise and Fall of the Religious Left: Politics, Television, and Popular Culture in the 1970s and Beyond (Columbia Series on Religion and Politics)
The selections in this volume explore ecologies of interdependence as a frame for religious, theological, and philosophical analysis and practice. Contributors examine questions of justice, climate change, race, class, gender, and coloniality and discuss alternative ways of engaging the world in all its biodiversity. Each essay, poem, reflection, and piece of art contributes to and reflects upon how to live out entangled differences toward positive global change.
Constructive and practical, global and local, communal and personal, Ecological Solidarities is an innovative contribution to the discourses on relational and liberative thought and practice in religion, philosophy, and theology. It will be welcomed by scholars of World Christianity and theology as well as seminary students, activists, and laity interested in issues of justice and ecology.
by Dr. L. Benjamin Rolsky
Columbia Series on Religion and Politics
Columbia University Press (November 12, 2019)
For decades now, Americans have believed that their country is deeply divided by “culture wars” waged between religious conservatives and secular liberals. In most instances, Protestant conservatives have been cast as the instigators of such warfare, while religious liberals have been largely ignored. In this book, L. Benjamin Rolsky examines the ways in which American liberalism has helped shape cultural conflict since the 1970s through the story of how television writer and producer Norman Lear galvanized the religious left into action.
The creator of comedies such as All in the Family and Maude, Lear was spurred to found the liberal advocacy group People for the American Way in response to the rise of the religious right. Rolsky offers engaged readings of Lear’s iconic sitcoms and published writings, considering them as an expression of what he calls the spiritual politics of the religious left. He shows how prime-time television became a focus of political dispute and demonstrates how Lear’s emergence as an interfaith activist catalyzed ecumenical Protestants, Catholics, and Jews who were determined to push back against conservatism’s ascent. Rolsky concludes that Lear’s political involvement exemplified religious liberals’ commitment to engaging politics on explicitly moral grounds in defense of what they saw as the public interest. An interdisciplinary analysis of the definitive cultural clashes of our fractious times, The Rise and Fall of the Religious Left foregrounds the foundational roles played by popular culture, television, and media in America’s religious history.
Decolonial Christianities: Latinx and Latin American Perspectives (New Approaches to Religion and Power)
1st ed. 2019 Edition by Dr. Raimundo Barreto
(Editor), Dr. Roberto Sirvent (Editor)
: New Approaches to Religion and Power
: 279 pages
: Palgrave Macmillan; 1st ed. 2019 edition (November 30, 2019)
What does it mean to theorize Christianity in light of the decolonial turn? This volume invites distinguished Latinx and Latin American scholars to a conversation that engages the rich theoretical contributions of the decolonial turn, while relocating Indigenous, Afro-Latin American, Latinx, and other often marginalized practices and hermeneutical perspectives to the center-stage of religious discourse in the Americas. Keeping in mind that all religions―Christianity included―are cultured, and avoiding the abstract references to Christianity common to the modern Eurocentric hegemonic project, the contributors favor embodied religious practices that emerge in concrete contexts and communities. Featuring essays from scholars such as Sylvia Marcos, Enrique Dussel, and Luis Rivera-Pagán, this volume represents a major step to bring Christian theology into the conversation with decolonial theory.
An Ecological Theology of Liberation: Salvation and Political Ecology (Ecology & Justice Series)
by Dr. Daniel P. Castillo
: Ecology & Justice
: 272 pages
: Orbis Books (December 19, 2019)
What is the relationship between salvation, human liberation, and care for creation? To answer this question Daniel Castillo expands on the ideas presented in Gustavo Gutiérrez's classic work A Theology of Liberation and proposes a novel concept: green liberation theology.
In this compelling and original work Castillo places Gutiérrez in dialogue with a diverse array of theological, ecological, and socio-scientific discourses, drawing upon the work of Jon Sobrino, Willie James Jennings, Walter Brueggemann, Ellen Davis, and others, paying special attention to Pope Francis' encyclical Laudato Si'.
Hispanic Theological Initiative at AAR/SBL
(For participation by HTI Scholars at AAR/SBL Annual Meetings, please see detailed list at the end of this publication)
Hispanic Theological Initiative Consortium Member Council Meeting
Friday, November 22, 2019, 12:00 AM - 3:00 PM
Marriott Marquis-Marriott - Grand 3 (Lobby Level)
Hispanic Theological Initiative Reception
Saturday, November 23, 2019, 8:00 PM - 10:00 PM
Omni San Diego Hotel
- Grand A (Fourth Level)
The Life and Scholarship of Luis D. León (1965—2018) celebrated at AAR/SBL
For those who will be attending the AAR/SBL Annual Meetings from November 23-26, 2019, please join in celebrating the life and scholarship of Dr. Luis Daniel León (1965—2018)
(2000-2001 HTI Post-Doctoral Fellowship Awardee) in a special panel session organized by colleagues and friends to honor his contributions to the field.
León, a prolific scholar of American Latina/o/x religions and a tenured Professor of Religious Studies at the University of Denver, died of natural causes in his Denver home on October 16, 2018. Among his many accomplishments include three volumes: La Llorona’s Children: Religion, Life, and Death in the United States-Mexican Borderlands (University of California Press, 2004), The Political Spirituality of Caesar Chavez: Crossing Religious Borders (University of California Press, 2015), and Spiritual Erotics: Affect and Contagion Among Latino Pentecostal Men—a work-in-progress at the time of his death. In the AAR, León was a pioneer in the study of queer Latinx and non-Christian Latinx religion and spiritualties, and at the University of Denver, he was a beloved mentor and colleague who pushed those around him to become their best.
The session, whose purpose is to celebrate León as a friend, scholar, and mentor, as well as to reflect on the legacy of León’s scholarship on transforming the fields of Latina/o/x religion and border/borderlands studies, will take place on Saturday, November 23 from 9:00-11:10am in the San Diego Convention Center 3 (Upper West Level).
The Center for Theological Inquiry
Research Workshops in Princeton on Religion & the Built Environment in Cooperation with the Architecture, Culture, and Spirituality Forum - Fall Semester 2020 - Spring Semester 2021
The Center of Theological Inquiry is an independent research institution in Princeton, NJ, with an interdisciplinary program for visiting scholars who welcome theology's dialogue with other fields. The Center convenes research workshops, where resident members discuss their work in progress, before presenting it in a concluding symposium with Princeton University's Center for the Study of Religion. Members are provided with furnished short-term residences in Princeton to enable them to work at Luce Hall daily, Monday to Thursday. They cover all other costs, including living expenses and utilities.
“Architecture is a way in which we structure our understanding of the world and our place in it. The built environment is replete with cultural meanings. Not only sacred buildings have religious and theological significance. The built structures and spaces we design and inhabit in everyday life—everywhere from homes, neighborhoods, and cities to workplaces, concert halls, and public squares—raise questions about God and spirituality for religious and secular traditions of thought and practice. In turn, how can the built environment be a theological and spiritual resource for human and planetary flourishing in an era of rapid urbanization, globalization, and climate change? CTI welcomes applications from researchers studying these questions in theology and architecture, as well as in religious studies, the social and life sciences, humanities and arts.”
Fall Workshop - Full-time in residence from September 8 to November 13, 2020.
Spring Workshop - Full-time in residence from January 19 to May 14, 2021.
open between September 1 and December 1, 2019.
The Forum for Theological Exploration (FTE)
fers the Fellowship for Doctoral Students of African Descent and the Fellowship for Latinx, Asian, and First Nations Doctoral Students. Each fellowship recipient receives an award up to $25,000. Qualified candidates must be:
Students of African, Latinx, Asian, Pacific Islands, or First Nations descent; enrolled full time in a ThD or PhD program in religious, theological or biblical studies; have completed coursework by the beginning of the awarded fellowship year; and in a position to write full-time during the fellowship year if applicant is at the dissertation stage. Applicants who are past coursework but not yet at candidacy (ABD) are eligible to apply.
For more information and to apply online visit FTE’s website
. All online applications are due by February 1, 2020.
The Louisville Institute
Global Religion Research Initiative
The Louisville Institute
, which is funded by Lilly Endowment Inc.
, and based at Louisville Presbyterian Seminary, offers several Grant Programs, Fellowship Programs, as well as Collaborative Inquiry Team program, which are outlined below.
The following grant programs support religious and theological scholarship among three strategic constituencies: pastors, academics, and researchers for the broader church.
The First Book Grant for Minority Scholars (FBM)
offers grants up to $40,000 to assist junior, non-tenured religion scholars of color to complete a major research project on an issue in North American Christianity related to the priorities of the Louisville Institute. Grant periods are typically one academic year in length. Deadline for application: 1/15/2020
The Sabbatical Grant for Researchers (SGR)
offers grants up to $40,000 to assist research and writing projects that will advance religious and theological scholarship in ways that also address practical issues concerning Christian faith and life, pastoral leadership, and/or religious institutions. Typically, applicants are fully employed in accredited academic institutions and eligible for up to a full academic year leave from teaching and administrative responsibilities. Deadline for application: 11/1/2019
The following three fellowship programs support the formation of ecclesiastically engaged academics for teaching and scholarship that serves the church and its ministries. Each fellowship awards stipends and links junior scholars into dynamic peer cohorts.
The Dissertation Fellowship (DF) program
offers up to twelve $25,000 grants to support the final year of PhD or ThD dissertation writing. Preference given to students engaged in research pertaining to North American Christianity, especially projects related to Institute mission priorities. This program is also open to outstanding students who may not intend to teach in theological education, but whose dissertation projects have the potential to strengthen the religious life of North American Christians and their institutions. Deadline for Application: 2/1/2020
The Doctoral Fellowship (DOC) program
encourages current PhD/ThD students to consider theological education as their vocation. The Institute awards up to ten two-year Doctoral Fellowships of $2,000 per year. In addition, Fellows constitute a peer learning cohort that meets six times over a two year period. Deadline for application: 3/1/2020
The Postdoctoral Fellowship (PostDoc) program
provides up to six awards of $25,000 each year (plus housing, health benefits, and moving benefits) to support a two-year teaching internship in a theological school. During this residency, Postdoctoral Fellows are accompanied by an academic mentor and a pastoral mentor. Fellows also constitute a peer learning cohort that meets a total of six times over two years. Deadline for Application
Louisville Institute’s Collaborative Inquiry Team (CIT) program
supports teams of four to eight pastors and professors who propose projects to strengthen the life of North American Christian congregations. Teams spend 18 to 36 months exploring together a living question currently confronting church and society. The grant amount is up to $45,000 for three years. Deadline for Application
Lake Institute on Faith & Giving at Indiana University’s Lilly Family School of Philanthropy
al Religion Research Initiative (GRRI) at the University of Notre Dame offers a variety of competitive research and writing grants and fellowship programs
in order to advance the study of religions around the globe. These competitive funding opportunities are available both to scholars already involved in the study of religion and to scholars for whom this is a new and genuine interest. The application deadline for three opportunities—the Dissertation Fellowship, the International Collaboration Grant, and the Project Launch Grant—is Monday, November 18, 2019.
GOOD DOCS - Award Winning Educational Documentaries
The Lake Institute
on Faith & Giving is accepting applications for the 2020-2021 Lake Doctoral Dissertation Fellowship
, which supports the last year of dissertation research that engages issues within religion & philanthropy or faith & giving. Applicants representing all fields of study are encouraged to apply to this annual $25,000 award. Applications are open until January 15, 2020.
GOOD DOCS is a platform that champions creative documentary filmmakers who promote new ideas, social change and human rights. This organization carefully selects films that are thought-provoking, entertaining, socially relevant and that contribute to classroom learning. According to GOOD DOCS, independent documentaries are one of the most powerful ways students learn about the world and engage with the most pressing issues of our time. Here is a sample of films that may serve as a resource for those that serve academia and community:
DECADE OF FIRE
is a new documentary that corrects the historical narrative of the 1970s fires that reduced the South Bronx to rubble. Through racially charged stereotypes, Black and Puerto Rican residents were blamed for the devastation as they fought to save and rebuild their neighborhoods. In this film, co-director Bronx-born Vivian Vázquez Irizarry redeems her community from harmful mythologies by uncovering the government policies of racism and neglect that devastated her community and continue to shape our cities today.
CESAR'S LAST FAST
A panorama of Mexican-American and American history, civil rights, nonviolent protest tactics, environmentalism, labor struggles, Catholic and Indigenous religious practices, never before seen footage of Chavez's spiritual fast gives students unprecedented insight into his life and the historic farm worker movement.
CRIME + PUNISHMENT
Examines the United States' most powerful police department through the brave efforts of a group of active duty officers and one unforgettable private investigator who risk their careers and safety to bring light to harmful policing practices, which have plagued the precincts and streets of New York City for decades.
This film shows the inner-workings and challenges of San Francisco’s Five Keys Charter School − the first high school of its kind in the United States that provides incarcerated adults the opportunity to earn a high school diploma to prepare them for successful reintegration into their communities.
Two military veterans, both green card immigrants willing to die for their country, find themselves deported and are now fighting to be heard and return to America - the only country they consider home. An intimate look at the human consequences of current U.S. immigration policy.
LUPE UNDER THE SUN
A fictional portrait with real migrant laborers as actors, Lupe Under the Sun delves into the psychological effects of loneliness and poverty undocumented workers experience. Inspired by director Reyes’s grandfather's life, the film explores the dislocation faced by those who have crossed borders in search of opportunity.
MEMORIES OF A PENITENT HEART
Combining a wealth of recently discovered home movies, video, and written documents, this documentary cracks open a Pandora’s box of unresolved family drama. The film reflects on the AIDS crisis of the 1980s and 1990s, and in particular, how families treat their LGBT members in a Latin American cultural and religious context.
NO MÁS BEBÉS
The story of Mexican immigrant mothers who sued LA county doctors, the state, and the U.S. government after they were sterilized while giving birth during the 1970s. Led by an intrepid Chicana lawyer and armed with hospital records secretly gathered by a doctor, the mothers stood up to powerful institutions in the name of justice.
Nationwide, the typical school counselor to student ratio is 1 to 490, and it's worse for low income students. Meet three high school seniors who become peer college counselors and fight for the right to college access for themselves and their peers. An inspiring story of student leadership.
Follows the inspirational story of Victor Rios, a high school dropout and gang member turned college professor and thought leader. Woven with archival materials to Rios’ troubled adolescence is the contemporary story where Rios steps in to help a program serving 16 to 24 year olds who haven’t finished high school.
This provocative documentary re-imagines the Mexico/US border as a mythical place comparable to Dante’s purgatory. The border is depicted as a place where poverty, violence, protectionism and paranoia collide. Directed by Mexican American filmmaker Rodrigo Reyes, Purgatorio
is a timely and resonant of humanity.
Follows the lives of three DACA students in Georgia, a state that has banned them from attending its top public universities, and from qualifying for in-state tuition at any other public college. The film tells the stories of a group of friends connected by an underground movement called Freedom University.
The following job opportunities are listed for your convenience. To view additional information including how to apply please check the HTI website
. To promote a job opportunity on HTI’s social media, the HTI website, and HTI’s newsletter, Journeys, fill out this form
Church Divinity School of the Pacific - Assistant Professor of Ministerial Leadership
Claremont Graduate University - Professor (Tenured or Tenure-Track) of Philosophy of Religion, Ethics, and Theology
Fuller Theological Seminary - Islamic Studies Tenure-Track Faculty
Fuller Theological Seminary - Poverty and Development Tenure-Track Faculty
Louisville Presbyterian Theological Seminary - Academic Dean
Phillips Exeter Academy - Religion Instructor
Phillips Theological Seminary - Faculty Position in Homiletics and Worship
Phillips Theological Seminary - Faculty Position in Pastoral Care
Seminary of the Southwest - John Hines Professor of Preaching
University of Chicago Divinity School - Islam in Africa (open rank)
University of Chicago Divinity SchooL - Modern Jewish Culture and History (open rank)
University of Chicago Divinity School - Rabbinic Judaism (open rank)
University of Chicago Divinity School - Religions in the Americas (open rank)
University of Tennessee - Assistant Professor of Religious Studies
University of Texas at Austin - Tenure Track Assistant Professor in Race/Ethnicity or Gender/Sexuality and the Study of Religion
University of the Incarnate Word - Assistant Professor of Religious Studies
Wartburg Theological Seminary - Assistant Professor of Latinx Theology and Ministry
Wheaton College - Robert B. and Anna E. Oliver Endowed Chair of World Religions
Through the site, HTI allows third parties to post job listings. HTI does not control such third parties, does not imply endorsement for any, and is not responsible for the content of such postings. Any representations made regarding such third parties or the job positions are governed by the policies and representations made by said third parties. HTI may accept, reject or remove postings, and HTI shall not be liable for any such removal.
Congratulations to João Chaves on his engagement to Clare Duffy.
Blessings to HTI Student Aide Lauren Whitfield on the birth of her daughter on Saturday, October 5.
Until We Meet in Heaven, Dear One
At the end of every phone call, my dear friend and mentor, Rev. Dr. Joyce Tucker would say, “Take good care, dear one.” Joyce came into my life as I was beginning my studies at Princeton Theological Seminary (PTS). She hired me to be a Student-Aide at the Hispanic Lay Leadership Program (HLLP) through the office of Continuing Education, where she was serving as Dean. From that moment on, Joyce was my dear and trusted mentor.
Tucker was instrumental in locating both the Hispanic Lay Leadership Program (HLLP) at PTS and then in 1999, the Hispanic Theological Initiative (HTI). At that time, I had completed my MDiv and was appointed Assistant Director of HTI. When the director, Dr. Zaida Maldonado Pérez resigned in 2002, Joyce affirmed me as HTI’s director. Two years later, Joyce retired from PTS, and although one would assume that in her transition she would have forgotten about HTI, she continued checking in, offering advice both professionally and personally, and even financially supporting HTI. For this, I can completely relate to what the former president of the Presbyterian School of Christian Education, Heath Rada, remarked at Joyce’s memorial service, “Joyce was a faithful friend, partner, and pastor to us. Faithful because you never doubted where she was rooted, and Who she chose to follow. Sensitive in times of both personal and professional upheaval - when we needed someone to offer support or care.”
Former president of McCormick Theological Seminary, Dr. Cynthia Campbell, and former president of Auburn Seminary, Dr. Barbara Wheeler, summarized at the memorial service, “John Calvin said that there are three theological virtues: humility, humility, and humility. Joyce Tucker had all of them. She wanted to help church business go smoothly and have good outcomes, but she did not want the credit. Instead Joyce was a creator of community and builder of relationships. She believed that theological education would thrive as the leaders of our theological institutions came to know, trust, and value one another. She helped build and sustain a community among seminary presidents, which made space for us to discover partnerships and collaborations. Most importantly, she helped us see ourselves as part of a larger project, advancing leadership for the whole church, not only the part of it served by our particular institution.” No wonder my dear one always said, “HTI is the best thing that I am part of!”
Joyce saw that HTI was not just about Hispanics/Latinx but that HTI was also serving the entire ecology of theological and religious education.
Like many of the HTI mentors whom I have witnessed and with whom I have had the awesome privilege and honor to serve, Joyce became my sister in Christ. And like Campbell stated, “Joyce leaves a legacy of commitment that is worth all of us emulating.” I am deeply grateful to God for my dear one’s commitment to the larger church and for her courage and wisdom in making space for HTI because it is a testimony to God’s great love and grace and an affirmation of HTI’s vision and mission.
Rev. Joanne Rodríguez
Executive Director of Hispanic Theological Initiative
We lift up prayers for healing and stabilization for Dr. Juan Martínez, Executive Dean and Vice President of Ashland Theological Seminary, who suffered a stroke on August 23 and went into surgery the following day. Dr. Martínez was discharged from the hospital on September 6 and transferred to an acute rehabilitation facility. He is eager to begin daily intense therapy sessions. We also offer prayers for peace and strength for Juan’s family during this time, especially for his wife, Ruth. We continue praying until full recovery is achieved.
We offer prayers for Raúl, the father of Dr. Mariana Alessandri, after he suffered a heart attack and stroke the weekend of July 26. As he recuperates, we pray for a full recovery.
Let us unite in prayer for Dr. Teresa Delgado’s husband, Pascal. We pray for his health as he battles cancer.
Let us pray for Dr. Justo González’s health. Since August, he has developed some health challenges that have affected his mobility. He is undergoing tests to determine the cause.
Continued prayers for those who are suffering from health and emotional issues.
It is with great sadness that we share that several members of the HTI familia recently lost loved ones:
· Dr. Horacio Vela’s grandmother, Julia Rios Vela, in June.
· HTI scholar, Martin Rodríguez’s godmother, LaVera Otoyo, in June.
. Dr. Samuel Pagan’s mother, Ida Luz Rosa Lopez, in July.
· Dr. Arlene M. Sánchez-Walsh’s father, Miguel Sánchez, on July 28.
· Dr. Matilde Moros’s mother-in-law, Marilyn Taylor, in August.
· Dr. María-Pilar Aquino’s brother, Clemente, on August 5.
· HTI Office Coordinator, Suzette Aloyo’s mother-in-law, Esperanza Aloyo, on August 21.
We pray for comfort, support, and peace for all those who are grieving in our community.
KEEP US POSTED
With the launching of HTI’s website, it is easier for members of the HTI community, to share any news items to have considered for inclusion in Journeys. You may submit your contributions by visiting www.htiprogram.org. Journeys is read widely and provides an excellent venue to promote Hispanic/Latinx events and scholarship.
HTI AT AAR
November 23 - November 26, 2019 - San Diego, CA
(For events at the Society of Biblical Literature (SBL), see separate listing, below)
Friday, November 22, 2019
Sound and Religion
Friday, 9:00 AM - 6:00 PM
Convention Center-26B (Upper Level East)
Theme: Sound and Religion
The American Religious Sounds Project will host a day-long workshop on sound and the academic study of religion. The workshop is designed for individuals interested in incorporating sound into their research, teaching, and community engagement. We imagine sound as either object of research and/or medium for sharing that research. The workshop will include presentations from scholars and artists, seminar-style discussions, and interactive activities.
The cost of the workshop, including lunch and a concluding reception, is covered by a grant from the Henry Luce Foundation. Additionally, we will award travel scholarships to emerging scholars to defray the cost of attendance. Registration is limited to the first 25 participants. To participate, select this workshop when registering for the Annual Meeting. Please indicate if you are an emerging scholar to request a scholarship. If you have already registered for the Annual Meeting, you may contact firstname.lastname@example.org to reserve a space in this workshop.
Amy Cimini, University of California, San Diego
Anandi Knuppel, Emory University
Francis Stewart, Bishop Grosseteste University
Jason C. Bivins, North Carolina State University
Finnian Moore Gerety, Brown University
Friday, 8:00 PM - 9:30 PM
Marriott Marquis-Presidio 2 (North Tower - Lobby Level)
Theme: Book Discussion: Spirit Outside the Gate: Decolonial Pneumatologies of the American Global South, by Oscar García-Johnson (Downers Grove: IVP, 2019)
Victor Ezigbo, Bethel University, Presiding
This book challenges the “imperial logic of Babel” with the subversive “logic of Pentecost” to challenge Western approaches to Latin American and Latinx Christian spirituality. “Building on the familiar missiological metaphor of ‘outside the gate’ established by Orlando Costas, García-Johnson moves to recover important elements in ancestral traditions of the Americas, with an eye to discerning pneumatological continuity between the pre-Colombian and post-Colombian communities:
Néstor Medina, University of Toronto
Peter Heltzel, New York Theological Seminary
Malinda Elizabeth Berry, Anabaptist Mennonite Biblical Seminary
Oscar Garcia-Johnson, Fuller Theological Seminary
Saturday, November 23, 2019
Latina/o Religion, Culture, and Society Unit and North American Religions Unit and Religions in the Latina/o Americas Unit
Saturday - 9:00 AM-11:30 AM
Convention Center-3 (Upper Level West)
Theme: Remembering and Moving with the Work of Luís D. León: A Commemorative Conversation
In this session, we gather to celebrate Luís León as friend, scholar, and mentor to a generation of students of Latinx religions. Our purpose is to reflect on how León’s scholarship shaped the fields of Latinx religion and border and borderlands studies over the last two decades, and to imagine together how it will continue to set a course for those and other fields in the future, through the scholars and scholarship that León helped to form.
Daisy Vargas, University of Arizona
La Llorona's Children at the US-Mexico Border: Luis D. Leon's Decolonial Scholarship in Confronting State Violence
Roger Green, Metropolitan State University of Denver
Employing Luis León's Religious Poetics in the Ayahuasca Diaspora
Adriana Nieto, Metropolitan State University of Denver
A Posthumous Thank You Letter to Luis Leon
Harold Morales, Morgan State University
La Llorona’s Beloved Children: An Engagement with the Specters of Luís León, Toni Morrison, and Jacques Derrida
Miguel De La Torre, Iliff School of Theology
Focus on Sustainability
Presidential Theme: Scholarly Workers in Public Spaces
Saturday, 9:00 AM - 11:30 AM
Convention Center-14A (Mezzanine Level)
Theme: Creating and Expanding Public Spheres and Climate Change
Elaine Nogueira-Godsey, Methodist Theological School in Ohio, Presiding
The AAR/ SBL Women’s Caucus, in collaboration with the Feminist Liberation Theologian’s
Network (FLTN), will discuss their role as feminist theologians and scholars of religion and their responsibilities as educators in public spaces during times of anthropogenic climate change. In light of AAR/SBL 2019’s theme, presenters will discuss their roles in creating and expanding public discussions and in communicating and bridging people’s denial and/or unawareness of anthropogenic climate change. Presenters will engage with questions related to how and why public spheres should be expanded to include the religious, gendered and racial experiences of minoritized and/or marginalized people around the globe (e.g. refugees, migrants, etc.). Moreover, presenters will propose steps towards inclusivity in our own public spaces. Additionally, panelists will give their responses and reflections regarding FLTN’s Friday session. Then, Mary Hunt of FLTN will provide a summary of what was discussed at FLTN’s Friday session as well as her insights and feedback about the papers presented.
Jennifer Owens-Jofré, Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary
Abby Mohaupt, Drew University
Theological Education in the Mobile Classroom: Working toward Justice for Migrants and Climate Justice along the Border
Rosalind F. Hinton, Tulane University
The Women of Cancer Alley, at the Center of the Public Sphere
Julia Enxing, University of Dresden
Ecological Literacy Should Be the Foundation for Religious Education: Re-Visioning Teaching Systematic Theology
Mary E. Hunt, Women's Alliance for Theology, Ethics, and Ritual
Association of Practical Theology
Saturday - 12:00 PM-3:00 PM
Convention Center-6E (Upper Level West)
Theme: Apprenticing into Practical Theology: Emerging Epistemologies, Methodologies, Collaborative Inquiries
Yara Gonzalez-Justiniano, Boston University, Presiding
This session asks what it means to be apprenticed into practical theology, given the varied epistemological foundations, methodological approaches, and contextual partnerships that ground practical theological research. How does an emerging scholar find their way in becoming a practical theologian? In the route from dissertation topic to professional advancement, how does the scholar navigate the complexities of life concerns (how to find employment), disciplinary boundaries (how to articulate one’s research and teaching areas), and scholarly expansion (how to deepen one’s expertise). With “apprenticeship” as organizing metaphor and vantage point, we want to draw descriptive difference between it and the more recognizable notion of “mentorship,” inviting more robust exploration of the many ways in which one is formed, fashioned, trained, intuited, disciplined into a field. We invite a systems approach to thinking about apprenticeship in practical theology, for more holistic exploration of well-being, street-smarts, relationship to other disciplines, the ecology of one’s practice.
Sponsored by the Association of Practical Theology (www.practicaltheology.org), the session features a panel of paired conversations between junior and senior colleagues—paired mentors/mentees who represent such important mentoring networks as the Forum for Theological Exploration, the Hispanic Theological Initiative, the Association of Theological Schools.
Question for conversation include:
• What is the nature of apprenticeship for practical theology (PT)?
• Is apprenticeship into PT intentional or accidental?
• How has the field evolved?
• How does one navigate strengths and failures as new scholars in the field?
• What values guide the journey from identifying a creative topic, to mapping out the scope of one’s disciplinary boundaries, to discovering the sources of inspiration and validation for one’s research and professional advancement?
• What disciplinary and institutional structures serve as reinforcing scaffolds?
• What communities of scholarship and practice hold us accountable to all this work?
• How might an emergent scholar become an “employed practical theologian”?
Jasmin Figueroa, Boston University School of Theology
Milagros Pena, University of Florida
Rebecca Jeney Park-Hearn, Seattle University
Debbie Gin, Association of Theological Schools
Gina Robinson, Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary
Reginald Blount, Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary
Ethics Unit and Latina/o Religion, Culture, and Society Unit and Liberation Theologies Unit and Transformative Scholarship and Pedagogy Unit
Saturday, 1:00 PM - 3:00 PM
Convention Center-6F (Upper Level West)
Theme: Teaching in Times of Crisis: Practices and Promises of Liberative Pedagogies
Jennifer Owens-Jofré, Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary, Presiding
We live in a time of socio-historical transition on political, cultural, and ecological fronts. What is our role as teachers of theology and religious studies in this time? What pedagogical strategies can we employ in our classrooms in order to create liberative spaces where, together with our students, we can engage the critical questions of our time and envision a new future of justice and flourishing? Join us in a panel discussion, hosted by eight teacher-scholars who will share their own practices of liberative pedagogy and open a discussion of what it means to teach in this time of crisis and open a time of collaborative discussion.
Kyle Lambelet, Emory University
Jennifer Quigley, Drew University
Michael A. Walker, North Park Theological Seminary
Salih Sayilgan, Wesley Theological Seminary
Mary Emily Duba, University of Chicago
Jaisy Joseph, Seattle University
Books under Discussion
Reformed Theology and History Unit
Saturday - 1:00 PM-3:00 PM
Convention Center-17B (Mezzanine Level)
Theme: Book Panel Session: The Providence of God: A Polyphonic Approach by David Fergusson
Paul T. Nimmo, University of Aberdeen, Presiding
This session will present a series of interactions with the recently published The Providence of God: A Polyphonic Approach by David Fergusson, followed by a response from the author.
Matthew Levering, University of Saint Mary of the Lake
Judith Wolfe, University of St Andrews
Ruben Rosario Rodriguez, Saint Louis University
Cynthia Rigby, Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary
David Fergusson, University of Edinburgh
Cynthia Rigby, Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary
Paul Nimmo, University of Aberdeen
World Christianity Unit
Saturday - 1:00 PM-3:00 PM
Convention Center-24C (Upper Level East)
Theme: New Developments in World Christianity: A Transnational and Multi-Disciplinary Conversation
Carlos Cardoza-Orlandi, Baylor University, Presiding
This session examines new directions in the study of world Christianity as panelists compare their own recent books, concentrating on global Christian contexts from the nineteenth century to present. The panel brings together scholars of Christianity in the Middle East, East Asia, sub-Saharan Africa, and the Americas to discuss monographs with distinctly different research methodologies—history, ethnography, sociology, and theology. At the same time, these authors consider a number of common themes and similar questions about the future of world Christianity as a multi-disciplinary field. The session is structured around the following questions: What shared commitments unite scholarship in world Christianity across different disciplines and regions of study? What distinct stories do these four books tell, and what stories remain to be told? How do these studies represent Christianity as a tradition that crosses boundaries? How does each author address the need to decolonize the study of world Christianity?
Deanna Womack, Emory University
Protestants, Gender, and the Arab Renaissance in Late Ottoman Syria
Christie Chui-Shan Chow, City Seminary of New York
Vision and Division: Seventh-Day Adventists and Denominational Schisms in Contemporary China
Raimundo Barreto, Princeton Theological Seminary
Decolonizing Ecumenism: Latin America and the Ecumenical Movement
Allison Norton, Hartford Seminary
Migrant God, Migrant Faith
Corey Williams, Leiden University
Briana Wong, Princeton Theological Seminary
Black Theology Unit
Saturday, 3:30 PM - 5:00 PM
Convention Center-24B (Upper Level East)
Theme: James Cone and the Black Radical Tradition: Black Theology, Solidarity, and Violence
Ben Sanders, Eden Theological Seminary, Presiding
This session features papers reflecting on the legacy of James Cone’s Black Theology and its connection to the black radical tradition. Special attention will be given to black solidarity with the Palestinian struggle for self-determination and the morality of violence as a means for social change.
Alease Brown, Stellenbosch University
Christian Theology and the Problematic Concept of “Non-Violent” Protest from the Perspective of Blackness
Matthew Vega, University of Chicago
The Internationalist Vision of Black Theology and Black Power: Toward a Theology of Solidarity between Black Americans & Palestinians
Taurean Webb, Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary
Fake Alters and False Idols: The Possibilities and Limitations of Black–Palestine Solidarity in Contemporary US Afro-Christian Theologies and Spaces
Religions in the Latina/o Americas Unit and Women and Religion Unit
Saturday - 5:30 PM-7:00 PM
Hilton Bayfront-Sapphire 411B (Fourth Level)
Theme: Women and Religio-Political Activism in the Latina/o Americas
Chris Tirres, DePaul University, Presiding
The papers in this session critically examine women's religious and political liberation movements in Latin Americas.
Ernesto Fiocchetto, Florida International University
The Beginning of Madres de Plaza de Mayo in Mendoza Argentina: The Complex Roles of Catholicism and Women
Susana L. Gallardo, San Jose State University
"I Never Left the Church": Belonging and Resistance in Mexican American Catholicism
Betsy Konefal, College of William and Mary
Social Justice, Christian Revolution, and "Tyranny" in 1960s Guatemala: A Conversation with Marjorie Melville
Cecilia Titizano, Graduate Theological Union
Sunday, November 24, 2019
La Comunidad of Hispanic Scholars of Religion & SBL’s Latina/o and Latin American Group
Theme: Climate, Justice, and the Displaced: The Land and Legal Violence
Sunday, 9:00 - 11:30 am
Hilton Bayfront-Aqua 314 (Third Level)
Loida I. Martell, Lexington Theological Seminary, Presiding
Jeremy V. Cruz, St. John's University, Presiding
This session, co-sponsored by La Comunidad of Hispanic Scholars and the Latina/o Religion, Culture, and Religion group, focuses on climate change, displacement, and legal violence. Recent reports from the United Nations, climate and social scientists, and social movements have demonstrated for a wider audience that climate change is not merely a theoretical hypothesis for the future, but an all too present reality. Sociologist Tracy Skillington (in “Climate Justice without Freedom,” 2015) discussed the consequences of those displaced by climate change and referred to the legislative efforts of industrial countries to stop such refugees as “legal violence.” Theology and ethics have rich traditions of speaking to issues related to creation care and the consequences arising when we neglect this calling: from the Jewish notion of tikkun olam, theologies arising from Native American and other indigenous spiritualities, to more recent contributions of ecofeminists and other scholar-practitioners. Situating our conversation at the intersections of religious/philosophical, environmental, and social scientific thought, we invite a robust discussion that addresses climate-related violence, Latinx communities, religion, and social justice.
Discussion will follow with the presentation of the 2019 La Comunidad Lifetime Achievement Award.
Theresa A. Yugar, California State University, Los Angeles
U.S. Latinx Environmental Grassroots Movements
Yohana Junker, Graduate Theological Union
Interweaving: Environmental Change and the Poetics of Eco-Art
Matthew Elia, Duke University
From Mestizaje to Cimarronaje: Afro-Latinx Ecologies and the Ethics of Climate Migration
Loida I. Martell, Lexington Theological Seminary
Sammy Alfaro, Grand Canyon Theological Seminary
Lauren Frances Guerra, Loyola Marymount University
Religions, Borders, and Immigration Seminar
Sunday, 9:00 AM - 11:30 AM
Hilton Bayfront-Aqua E (Third Level)
Theme: Religions, Borders, and Immigration Seminar
Kristine Suna-Koro, Xavier University, Presiding
The Religions, Borders, and Immigration Seminar's Round Table Session will be devoted to formal responses and discussions of six pre-circulated papers. These papers come from a diverse group of scholars who explore and reflect on the topics related to immigration from different religious, theological, and methodological perspectives. This is the first year of the Seminar and we welcome scholars and religious leaders interested in contributing to the conversation.
Katherine Kunz, University of Basel
Integration and “Being with” Refugees: A Case Study of Offene Kirche Elisabethen, Basel, Switzerland
Victor Carmona, University of San Diego
Robert Heimburger, Fundación Universitaria Seminario Bíblico de Colombia, International Foundation for Electoral Systems, Oxford Pastorate
The Border, Brexit, and the Church: A Comparative Theological-Ethical Analysis of U.S. Roman Catholic and Church of England Statements on Migration Today
Molly Greening, Loyola University Chicago
Border Walls and Islamic Borderlands: Transgressing the Shared Ethos of Religious Boundary Making and Geopolitical Border Policing
Kaia D. S. Rønsdal, University of Oslo
Fluid Hospitality in Borderlands
James McBride, New York University
The Wall, Semantic Desubstantiation, and Authoritarian Discourse: Why Trumpism Confounds Its Critics
Edith Szanto, American University of Iraq, Sulaimani
Voluntourism in Iraq: Saving Refugees during Vacation
Anne Blankenship, North Dakota State University
Helen Boursier, College of Saint Scholastica
Kirsteen Kim, Fuller Theological Seminary
Mary Beth Yount, Neumann University
Business Meeting: Alexander Y. Hwang, Saint Leo University
Liberation Theologies Unit
Sunday - 9:00 AM-11:30 AM
Convention Center-4 (Upper Level West)
Theme: Landscapes of Liberation: Building New Horizons of Bodies, Borders, and Belonging
Maria T. Davila, Presiding
The context of the 2019 AAR meeting in San Diego places concrete demands on all of us to consider how bodies, borders, and belonging are constructed as physical and symbolic realities, powerful enough to determine the life prospects of millions of human beings and the planet. These shifting conceptions of realities are determined by border crisis, military developments, ecological disasters, criminalization and invisibilization of growing homeless and refugee populations, and communal displacement by industrial complexes. The transformations we witness in the San Diego area are not unique, and have devastating correlates at the regional, national and global levels.
Nixon Shabalom Cleophat, Bloomfield College
Vodou, an Inclusive Epistemology: Toward A Queer Eco-Theology of Liberation
Rebecca David-Hensley, Denver University, Iliff School of Theology
Gendering Immigration: A Liberative Feminist Hermeneutic for Crossing the US/Mexico Border
Daniel Hauge, Boston University
The Comforts of “Home”: White Comfort as Boundary Marker
Sunder John Boopalan, Princeton Theological Seminary
Borders, Bodies, Power, and Affect
Sylvia Marcos, Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México
Crossing Borders: Between Theologies and Feminisms in the Contemporary Mexican Political Context
Santiago H. Slabodsky, Hofstra University
Books under Discussion
Pentecostal–Charismatic Movements Unit
Sunday, 1:00 PM - 3:00 PM
Hilton Bayfront-Aqua 303 (Third Level)
Theme: The Spirit of the Age: Historical and Theological Trends in the Study of Pentecostal-Charismatic Movements
Arlene Sánchez-Walsh, Azusa Pacific University
Néstor Medina, University of Toronto
Ángela Tarango, Trinity University
Peter Althouse, Florida Southern College
Andrea Johnson, California State University, Dominguez Hills
Leah Payne, George Fox University
Books under Discussion
Karl Barth Society of North America
Sunday - 3:30 PM-5:00 PM
Hilton Bayfront-Indigo 204A (Second Level)
Theme: Discussing Dogmatics after Babel: Beyond Theologies of Word and Culture by Rubén Rosario Rodriguez
This session will feature a roundtable discussion of Dogmatics After Babel: Beyond Theologies of Word and Culture by Rubén Rosario Rodriguez.
Paul D. Molnar, Saint John's University
Orlando Espin, University of San Diego
Cambria Kaltwasser, Northwestern College
Ruben Rosario Rodriguez, Saint Louis University
Keith Johnson, Wheaton College
La Comunidad of Hispanic Scholars of Religion
Sunday - 4:00 PM-6:30 PM
Marriott Marquis-Pacific 26 (First Level)
Theme: Voces Fronterizas: Perspectivas Descoloniales sobre (In)migración/ Borderlands Voices: Decolonized Perspectives about (Im)migration
Loida I. Martell, Lexington Theological Seminary, Presiding
Sammy Alfaro, Grand Canyon Theological Seminary, Presiding
(This session will be in Spanish) La cercanía a la frontera estadounidense durante la reunión anual de la Sociedad de Literatura Bíblica (SBL) en 2019 presenta una oportunidad para pensar sobre la frontera como el espacio liminal entre dos horizontes. Las realidades socioeconómicas en el sur y norte de la(s) frontera(s), productos de la explotación capitalista, exigen un análisis descolonizador de sistemas, leyes y prácticas que en ocasiones apelan a principios bíblicos y teológicos. La continua migración e inmigración de pueblos sufrientes y el afán por construir muros divisorios—políticos, religiosos, así como físicos—entre familias, comunidades e iglesias urgen una lectura descolonial de textos y contextos. Con esto en mente, este panel de voces fronterizas busca avanzar la conversación desde perspectivas descoloniales con el fin de denunciar abusos y desplazamientos imperialistas. *** The proximity of the US border during the annual meeting of the Society of Biblical Literature in 2019 provides an opportunity to think about the border as the liminal space between two horizons. The socioeconomic realities south and north of the border(s), products of capitalistic exploitation, demand a decolonial analysis of systems, laws, and practices that at times appeal to biblical and theological principles. The continued migration and immigration of suffering peoples and the misguided desire to construct dividing walls—political, religious, as well as physical—between families, communities and churches call for a decolonial reading of texts and contexts. With this in mind, this panel of borderlands voices seeks to advance the conversation from decolonial perspectives with the aim of denouncing imperialist abuses and displacements.
Ahida Pilarski, Saint Anselm College
Gregory Cuellar, Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary
Leticia Guardiola-Saenz, Seattle University
Jean-Pierre Ruiz, St. John's University, New York
Comparative Approaches to Religion and Violence Unit
Sunday, 5:30 PM - 7:00 PM
Hilton Bayfront-Cobalt 520 (Fifth Level)
Theme: Religion, Violence, and Technologies of Communication
Kelly Denton-Borhaug, Moravian College, Presiding
Across the globe, the power of social media to organize communities for both positive and nefarious ends becomes more apparent by the day. While social media can be used to spur resistance to oppressive regimes, as in the Arab Spring, it can also be used to mobilize murderous mobs, as in attacks on Muslims in Sri Lanka. Similarly, social media can also be used both to promote religious tolerance and harmony or to limit it. The papers in this panel demonstrate not only that this complex relationship between religion and media is not specific to the electronic technologies of social media, but also that in today’s society, social media has become a significant factor in the construction and perpetuation of what participants understand as religious conflict, or even holy war.
L. Benjamin Rolsky, Rutgers University
Establishments and Their Fall: Direct Mail, the New Right, and the Remaking of American Politics
Sara Kamali, University of Oxford
RaHoWa: White Nationalists Waging a Racial Holy War through Social Media
Simon Mastrangelo, University of Bern
Justification of Violence on Facebook: The Israeli-Palestinian Conflict Portrayed as a Religious War
Giulia Evolvi, Ruhr University
Islamophobia on Twitter: Antagonistic Anti-Muslim Narratives about Brexit and Migration
Monday, November 25, 2019
Roman Catholic Studies Unit
Monday, 9:00 AM - 11:30 AM
Hilton Bayfront-Sapphire 410B (Fourth Level)
Theme: Catholicism, Colonialism, and the Politics of Race in the Americas
Kathleen Holscher, University of New Mexico, Presiding
The Roman Catholic Studies Unit is committed to understanding the intersection of Catholicism, colonialism, and the construction of race in the Americas. The study of Catholicism must reckon with ways that the Catholic Church has participated in the (re)production of race and racism in colonial settings. This session aims to move beyond "inclusion" or "pluralism " models that dominate the field of Catholic Studies, and to interrogate how colonialism and race formation have contributed to the constitution of Catholicism itself.
Néstor Medina, University of Toronto
The Catholic Church and Ethnic Relations in Spanish Colonial Societies
Jack Downey, University of Rochester
A Desert of Snow and Ice: "Wilderness" Missionaries and Alaska in the Colonial Imagination
Alexandria Griffin, Arizona State University
Black Protestant Anti-Catholicism in the Christian Recorder
Timothy Dulle, Fordham University
Tinseltown Catholics: The Development of White Catholic Identity in Los Angeles
Neomi DeAnda, University of Dayton
John Seitz, Fordham University
Michael Pasquier, Louisiana State University
Karen Enriquez, Loyola Marymount University
Monday, November 25
Religions in the Latina/o Americas Unit
Monday - 1:00 PM-3:00 PM
Hilton Bayfront-Aqua 303 (Third Level)
Theme: African-Diasporic Religion in the Latina/o Americas
Steven Engler, Mount Royal University
Ritual Polyphony in Afro-Brazilian Religions
Axel Presas, Emory University
An Analysis on Orality in the Practice of Afro-Cuban Ifá: On the Ethical and Pragmatic Value of Patakís
Michael Amoruso, Amherst College
Absence and Activism: The Death and Afterlives of Francisco José das Chagas
Justin Doran, Middlebury College
Chris Tirres, DePaul University
Christian Spirituality Unit
Monday, 3:30 PM-5:00 PM
Hilton Bayfront-Aqua F (Third Level)
Theme: Spirituality and Human Relationships: Perspectives from the Social Sciences
Rebecca Giselbrecht, University of Bern, Vancouver School of Theology, Presiding
This session focuses on the role spirituality plays in helping people to form deep spiritual friendships, heal from trauma, and address racial oppression. Presenters examine the concept of spiritual friendship through psychological theories; present a model of healing informed by Christian spiritual practices, neuroscience, and narrative therapy; and examine the need for a contemplative, nonviolent spiritual approach to racial justice as it pertains to the multiracial experience.
Ally Moder, Azusa Pacific University
The Telling Story of Domestic Abuse: Integrating Spirituality, Neuroscience, and Narrative in Healing Praxis for Survivors
Aizaiah Yong, Claremont School of Theology
Contemplative Nonviolence for the Multiracial Person
Sarah Bixler, Princeton Theological Seminary
Attachment and Spiritual Friendship: An Interdisciplinary Exploration
Presidential Theme: Scholarly Workers in Public Spaces
Women and Religion Unit
Monday, 3:30 PM - 5:00 PM
Convention Center-24C (Upper Level East)
Theme: Subversive and Creative Leadership and Activism of Women: Religion, Politics, and the Public Sphere
Boyung Lee, Iliff School of Theology, Presiding
How do religion and spirituality inspire women to socially engage for peace and justice? How does feminism inspire women to reimagine their places in religion? This paper session brings three excellent papers together that explore women's creativity and subversion in religious-political activism in a Tibetan Buddhist community, in Lithuania, and at the US-Mexico border. The papers critically question the power of religious symbols and rituals in activism and the memorialization of national history, and the notion of sovereignty.
Grazina Bielousova, Duke University
The Art of Blasphemy: Lithuanian Feminist Protest and the Sacredness of National Reproduction
Jue Liang, University of Virginia
“I Am Not a Buddhist Feminist”: Gender Discourse among Tibetan Buddhist Nuns at Larung Gar
Rebecca Berru Davis, Montana State University
Border Crossings: Latina Women’s Restorative Interventions through Art and Activism
Rosemary P. Carbine, Whittier College
Pentecostal–Charismatic Movements Unit
Monday - 5:30 PM-7:00 PM
Hilton Bayfront-Sapphire D (Fourth Level)
Theme: Space, Place, and Pentecostalism
Sammy Alfaro, Grand Canyon Theological Seminary, Presiding
Space, Place, and Pentecostalism
Alan J. Clark, Claremont Graduate University
Meet the Mormons: Pentecostal and Latter-Day Saint Religious Interactions in Utah
Doing Pentecostal Civic Engagement in the Squatter Area of Baguio City, Philippines
Dara Delgado, University of Dayton
Healing Is the Children's Bread: Healing as Theo-Political Resistance and Survival among Black Holiness Pentecostals in the Urban North during the Migration Era
Daniela C. Augustine, Lee University
Seeking the Welfare of the City: Cultivating Pentecostal Spirituality of Urban Sustainability
Daniel Ramirez, Claremont Graduate University
HTI AT SBL
November 23 - November 26, 2019 - San Diego, CA
(For events at the American Academy of Religion - AAR - see separate listing, above)
Saturday, November 23, 2019
Latino/a and Latin American Biblical Interpretation
Saturday, 1:00 PM - 3:30 PM
Room: 32B (Upper Level East) - Convention Center
Theme: Book Review Panel of Latinxs, the Bible, and Migration (Palgrave, 2018)
Francisco Lozada, Brite Divinity School (TCU), Presiding
Jin Young Choi, Colgate Rochester Crozer Divinity School, Panelist (15 min)
Leticia Guardiola-Sáenz, Seattle University, Panelist (15 min)
Victor Carmona, University of San Diego, Panelist (15 min)
Maria Teresa Davila, Merrimack College, Panelist (15 min)
Efrain Agosto, New York Theological Seminary, Respondent (20 min)
Jacqueline Hidalgo, Williams College, Respondent (20 min)
Islands, Islanders, and Scriptures / Contextual Biblical Interpretation / Minoritized Criticism and Biblical Interpretation / Postcolonial Studies and Biblical Studies
Saturday, 4:00 PM - 6:30 PM
Room: 32B (Upper Level East) - Convention Center
Theme: Talk with the President
Mary Foskett, Wake Forest University, Presiding
Rodney Sadler, Union Presbyterian Seminary, Panelist
Jacqueline Hidalgo, Williams College, Panelist
Miguel De La Torre, Iliff School of Theology, Panelist
Karri Whipple, Drew University, Panelist
Uriah Kim, Graduate Theological Union, Panelist
Brian Blount, Union Presbyterian Seminary, Respondent
Jione Havea, Independent Scholar, Respondent
Sunday, November 24, 2019
Feminist Hermeneutics of the Bible
Sunday, 1:00 PM to 3:30 PM
Room: Torrey Pines 2 (North Tower - Lobby Level) - Marriott Marquis
Theme: White Supremacy and Feminist Hermeneutics of the Bible
A panel discussion on the intersections between White Supremacy and Feminist Biblical Hermeneutics. This panel will include reflections from female-identified biblical scholars of different academic ranks and social locations as well as engagement with the audience.
Margaret Aymer, Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary, Presiding
Juliana Claassens, Universiteit van Stellenbosch - University of Stellenbosch, Panelist
Jin Young Choi, Colgate Rochester Crozer Divinity School, Panelist
Wil Gafney, Brite Divinity School (TCU), Panelist
Corinna Guerrero, Santa Clara University, Panelist
Cheryl Kirk-Duggan, Shaw University Divinity School, Panelist
Monica Rey, Boston University, Panelist
Melissa Sellew, University of Minnesota-Twin Cities, Panelist
Monday, November 25, 2019
Racism, Pedagogy and Biblical Studies
Monday, 1:00 PM - 3:30 PM
Room: 30E (Upper Level East) - Convention Center
Theme: Best Practices for Latinx Students in Our Biblical Studies Classrooms
Beth Tanner, New Brunswick Theological Seminary, Presiding
Eric Barreto, Princeton Theological Seminary, Panelist
Lydia Hernández-Marcial, Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago, Panelist
Francisco Lozada, Brite Divinity School (TCU), Panelist
Kay Higuera Smith, Azusa Pacific University, Panelist
Monica Rey, Boston University, Respondent
Sara Ronis, Saint Mary's University (San Antonio), Respondent
HTI AT ETS
71st Annual Meeting of The Evangelical Theological Society - San Diego, CA
Theme: "Christ in all Scripture"
Manchester Grand Hyatt San Diego
1 Market Place, San Diego, CA 92101
November 20 - 22, 2019
Wednesday, November 20
3:40 PM - 4:20 PM
Grand Hyatt - Highland Peak, San Diego, California
Second Floor- Gaslamp AB
Alexander Gonzales, Dallas Theological Seminary
A Biblical Theology of Creation: Jesus Presented as Creator in the Seven Signs of John’s Gospel
Thursday, November 21
11:00 AM - 11:40 AM
Grand Hyatt - Highland Peak, San Diego, California
33rd Floor - Highland Peak
Gerardo A. Corpeño, Wheaton College
The Rich and the Poor meet together: Jesus and Holistic Salvation in Luke 19:1-10