Read Hispanic Theological Initiative's quarterly newsletter to celebrate your community's many achievements, and discover Latinx resources to better serve the academy, the Church, and the world!

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What did you do this Summer?
As many begin the academic year, a well-known question is always asked, “What did you do over your summer?”  Well for HTI, the summer is always an exciting and busy time.  Your staff, faculty, mentors, and editors welcomed more than 50 scholars to the HTI Professional Development Conference, held from June 24 – 28 at member school Princeton Theological Seminary.  These HTI Scholars attended courses, seminars, and lectures to prepare and enhance their writing, teaching, and lecturing skills.  Take a look at two HTI Scholars’ reflections on the week’s events.
“ was gratifying to observe that HTI is growing in the right direction. While HTI is simultaneously maintaining its foundational goals and reaffirming its institutional identity, it also welcomes emerging scholars coming from a variety of cultural affiliations and fields, whose work dialogue with an array of Christian and even non-Christian traditions. In my humble opinion, HTI fulfills a key principle of Latinx, Latina, and Latino Theologies in the 21st century: doing theology en conjunto implies welcoming and taking seriously the often-invisible bodies, voices, and complex relationships with the divine that our Latinidad expresses throughout the world.
Vinicius Marinho
University of Chicago Divinity School
2018-2019 HTI Comprehensive Exams Scholar
“For the past two years, I have been hearing about HTI and the great opportunity it has offered Latinx students over the past twenty years. When I decided to pursue a PhD, becoming an HTI Scholar was at the top of my to-do list. And, fortunately, I am now an HTI Scholar and after attending the HTI’s Professional Development Conference I can affirmatively state that HTI has lived up to its reputation. The week was a great opportunity to learn, network, and be encouraged by simply sharing space with other Latinx scholars at other schools and different stages of their PhD studies. As someone who is about to start my first year, this week was a source of hope; an assurance that it is possible for me to make it through. I am thankful for what these past few days have meant and I am definitely looking forward to what the year will bring.”
Yolanda Santiago Correa
Southern Methodist University
2018-2019 HTI First Year Scholar
In addition to HTI’s Professional Development Conference, many HTI scholars and faculty share their experiences teaching and studying in places like Italy, Israel, and Senegal!


Dear Friends,
Your Hispanic Theological Initiative is always striving to advance its mission. With funding from the Henry Luce Foundation, HTI introduced two Open Plaza blog writing sessions held in July and August.

In July, HTI also mailed its 2018-2019 Annual Brochure, highlighting HTI’s growth and maturity through the image of a beautiful tree. The brochure is updated yearly to showcase HTI’s current HTI Scholars, and HTI graduates’ titles and current place of employment. If you have not received a copy, you can request one on our HTI Annual Brochure page, but if you cannot wait to read it click here to view it on the HTI website. HTI also released the latest issue of Perspectivas on July 30th, with a call for papers by the new editor, Dr. Nestor Medina.
The HTI En Conjunto Association (ECA) met at the end of June and they welcome you to visit the new ECA section in the newsletter, and join the ECA. The ECA will have a  reception for its members on Saturday, November 17th at the Embassy Suites - Cripple Creek (Second Level) from 8:00 to 9:00 pm.
Following HTI’s tradition, a listing of HTI Scholars’ presentations at the American Academy of Religion and the Society of Biblical Literature (AAR/SBL) annual meetings is included in this issue. HTI also invites you to its annual reception on Saturday, November 17th, at the Embassy Suites - Cripple Creek (Second Level) from 9:00 - 10:30 pm.
As you can see this issue of Journeys is packed with the busy workings of HTI Scholars this summer, and new opportunities, so grab your beverage of choice, settle into your cozy reading chair, and enjoy!

Rev. Joanne Rodríguez


With funding from the Henry Luce Foundation, HTI offered two Open Plaza blog writing sessions where participants polished their public square writing techniques, with the support of amazing leaders: Dr. Xochitl Alvizo (2014-2015 HTI Dissertation Scholar), Assistant Professor of Religious Studies at California State University, Northridge, Dr. Daniel Ramírez (2002-2003 HTI Dissertation Scholar, HTI Mentor), Associate Professor of Religion at Claremont Graduate University and Dr. Carmen Nanko-Fernandez (HTI Mentor, HTI Selection Committee member), Professor of Hispanic Theology and Ministry at the Catholic Theological Union in Chicago.  Dr. Leopoldo Sánchez (2002-2003 HTI Dissertation Scholar), Werner R.H. and Elizabeth R. Krause Professor of Hispanic Ministries at Concordia Seminary, shares his experience attending the July session:
“In graduate school, we were trained to write articles for academic audiences in order to advance research in our fields and build a tenure portfolio. In this workshop, we were challenged to explore blogging as a genre in its own right with the potential to reach a broader audience that could benefit from our reflections on the role of theology and religion for addressing issues in the public square affecting Latino/a communities. The workshop exhibited the professionalism, excellence, hospitality, and collegiality we have come to joyfully expect from the HTI leadership and participants.”
Within New Opportunities section you will find Marianna Alessandri’s (2008-2009 HTI Dissertation year Scholar) reflection on her experience attending the first Open Plaza training and writing session held in July, 2018.

After a long week of workshops at the Professional Development Conference, the board of the En Conjunto Association (ECA) gathered to plan for the rest of the year. This diverse group of HTI alumni that make up the ECA board brainstormed best practices for telling the HTI story and ways of keeping the en conjunto way alive even after graduation from the program. HTI is at a point of notable growth, for this reason, the board seeks to nurture and encourage spaces for collaboration, networking, and support. The ECA will be sharing stories by HTI Alumni about the impact of elders who have passed away, celebrating their lives and contributions on HTI Giving Day, November 2nd.  That day we invite you to share on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter your own stories of elders who have influenced you. And to join the  ECA and help shape the next generation of leaders in theology and religion, click here.

Collaboration Makes Vision Possible

“The vital purpose of this new position is to build collaborations between the church leadership, bible institutes, and academic institutionalized theological education. One of the things that has hurt the landscape of theological education is that there has been a bifurcation between the academy and the church and both have lost the richness of cross-fertilization. It has been a difficult time, and it is a time for both institutions—the church and theological education—to redefine themselves and figure out the best way for this enterprise to continue.  Collaboration makes vision possible,” this is how Dr. Elizabeth Conde-Frazier (1997-1998 HTI Dissertation-Year Scholar, HTI Mentor, HTI Advisory Committee Member) describes her new role as Coordinator of Relations with Entities of Theological Education at the Asociación para la Educación Teológica Hispana (AETH.) Dr. Conde-Frazier comes to this work with more than thirty-five years of experience as a scholar, advocate, and educator.

Already in her role she has had to mediate meetings with regional bible institute staff, denominational leaders, and academic theological education faculty. She describes one experience in the following manner, “I recently had a meeting with some major leaders in a particular region. There had been some tension because of turf protection. I came as an outside person—I came as one who needed to learn from them, so I just asked questions. As they are answering my questions, they began to realize that they had some real and concrete common opportunities to work together.” Dr. Conde-Frazier believes in creating sacred spaces—spaces in which the Holy Spirit is welcomed, and when the Holy Spirit is welcomed, as a result, leaders begin to be receptive to possibilities for collaboration. She states that AETH has already established many affiliations with a variety of denominations and academic theological institutions. She hopes to be used by the Holy Spirit to define, with these diverse groups of leaders, the values that are going to guide their important collaboration for the betterment of Latinx communities and theological education within the United States. This is an exciting project because it creates a new landscape for Latinxs to enter theological education and it is a unique opportunity to help bridge the gap between the theological academic landscape and Latinx church communities.
HTI author's book creates an En Conjunto response

As Dr. Teresa Delgado lectures across the country about her book, A Puerto Rican Decolonial Theology: Prophesy Freedom, she reflects on her encounters in an interview with HTI’s student aide, Rudy Logan.

Rudy Logan: What were some of your experiences and the responses you received when you lectured at different schools on A Puerto Rican Decolonial Theology: Prophesy Freedom?

Delgado: My book was published September 2017, the same month hurricanes Irma and Maria further devastated Puerto Rico. In many ways the book itself was a footnote and supportive evidence to what was being lived out in real time. In lieu of what happened, I felt there was a palpable sense of urgency that gave way to how this book was trying to use this significant moment as motivation to speak theologically about the condition of Puerto Rico and the Puerto Rican community. It was very emotional for me because for the first time, since the book had been released, a community of scholars was affirming the necessity of prophetic action springing from this prophetic voice. I felt the greatest impact when I was at Princeton Theological Seminary for the Herencia Lecture because of the Latinx community present who affirmed and understood why I wrote the book. The response from my audience at St. John’s University in Minnesota, was completely different. My audience was surprised to find out that there was a Puerto Rican community in Minnesota when I showed a clip of the mobilization being done by this community there.

Logan: How has your theological stance been affirmed and/or challenged by the audience?

Delgado: One of the critiques I have heard is that I do not go far enough in pushing for a particular political strategy or viewpoint, but I did that intentionally. I purposely did not want to come down on the statehood, commonwealth or independence side of the debate. I wanted the voices of our stories and the voices of our people to tell what we as a ‘people’ need. What does decolonial freedom look like and what should it feel like to us? And I think whatever political structures can be designed around that, is what is really at stake. In an interview on Democracy Now, Oscar López Rivera was asked, “What do Puerto Ricans want?” He said, “I think the Puerto Rican people just want to be Puerto Rican. They want to have their language, culture and way of being in the world and not have that obliterated.” This is what had happened to Hawaii when it became a state – their language and culture and way of being as indigenous Hawaiians was obliterated. Do we give that up? Puerto Ricans, for so many years, have been saying, “We’ll live in the good enough.” I think this is what has allowed the continuation of the commonwealth status. This is what is good enough; this is as good as it gets because, in some way, it allows us to preserve those things that make us Puerto Rican. But the storm has made us reckon with the veil of compromise that has been torn off, showing us our colonial reality for what it really is. So we have to do something different in this particular moment. I do not know what this future looks like and that is why I cannot describe it.

Logan: Broadly speaking, what have you drawn from this experience that you would like to mention?

Delgado: One of the things that was so difficult for me was the solitary process of research and writing for this book. Here I am talking about Puerto Rico and community, yet I am doing this alone and it felt very inconsistent. It was not until I was blessed to find a conversation partner in a young Puerto Rican doctoral student in American Religious History, Jorge Juan Rodríguez (2018-2019 HTI  Comprehensive Exams Scholar). He helped me revise the project and he even wrote the foreword in the book. Additionally, once the book was released, I enjoyed and learned so much from the dialogue that took place across gender, denominations, and generations and I cannot overstate how impactful that was for me. One of the joys and fears of writing is that you make yourself vulnerable and, once your work is out, it is subject to critique. Constantly as you share your book, you ask yourself, “Why had I not thought of that?” And “Why did I not include those voices?” But as I moved away from my own self-critique I have realized that it has become an en conjunto response, and that is exactly where I felt it needed to be. I am hoping that it will serve as a stepping stone and a building block for another cohort of Latinx scholars to dialogue around Puerto Rico, Christian theology, and decolonial theology.

Dr. Teresa Delgado (2003-2004 HTI Dissertation Scholar, HTI Mentor, Selection Committee Member, Steering Committee Member) is Professor and Department Chairperson of Religious Studies, and Director of Peace and Justice Studies at Iona College.


Dissertation Defense 

Jennifer Owens-Jofré (2017-2018 HTI Dissertation-Year Scholar) successfully defended her dissertation and is Visiting Assistant Professor of Constructive Theology at Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary for her Louisville Institute Post-doctoral Fellowship.
Licette Owens (Jen’s Mother), Dr. Jennifer Owens-Jofré, and Dr. Eduardo Fernández, SJ (committee chair).

New Appointments
NYTS Announces a New Academic Dean
The Board of Trustees of New York Theological Seminary has unanimously appointed Dr. Efraín Agosto (1998-1999 HTI Post-doctoral Scholar, Selection Committee Member, Mentor, Steering Committee Member, Perspectivas Editor) to serve as the Vice President for Academic Affairs and the Academic Dean effective July 1, 2018.

Agosto joined the faculty of NYTS in July 2011 as Professor of New Testament Studies. His scholarship focuses primarily on the Pauline Epistles, with a special interest in the leadership of Paul and others who were serving in ministry in these communities. “I am pleased to accept this new role at NYTS. I have thoroughly enjoyed these last seven years as part of a wonderful faculty serving a terrific student body. Now to provide additional academic leadership as Vice President and Academic Dean is a challenge that I welcome,” he said.

HTI Scholar hired at Auburn Seminary

In early July, 2018, Auburn Seminary announced the appointment of Erica M. Ramírez (2018-2019 HTI Dissertation-Year Scholar) as Auburn’s Director of Applied Research. Ramírez was serving as the Richard B. Parker Assistant Professor of Wesleyan Thought and Heritage at Portland Seminary in Portland, Oregon. According to Auburn, Ramírez is “a rising star in the field of U.S. Latinx religion, and a scholar of Pentecostalism, she brings to the Auburn team a vital sociological imagination and a deep commitment to research and writing that troubles the waters and heals the world.”

Currently, Ramírez is a PhD Candidate (ABD) in Sociology of Religion at Drew University. With broad interests in religion, contemporary politics, and culture, Ramírez is particularly interested in “how radical religious traditions present as a challenge to and resource against social oppression.”

Merrimack College hires an HTI Scholar
New Faculty Members join the Merrimack College community and one of them is your own Maria Teresa Davila (HTI 2004-2005 HTI Dissertation Year Scholar, HTI Mentor).  Davila joined as Lecturer in Religious and Theological Studies.

Other Appointments
Miguel Diaz (1998-1999 HTI Dissertation Year Scholar, HTI Mentor, 2002 HTI Book Prize Winner) accepted appointment to serve on the Ambassador’s Circle, which is part of the National Democratic Institute headed by Secretary Madeleine Albright in Washington. Diaz is working to advance democracy and human rights issues around the world. Diaz is excited to get back into world of international relations at a much needed time in our nation’s history.

Mayra Rivera (2004-2005 HTI Dissertation Year Scholar, HTI Mentor) Associate Professor of Theology and Latino Studies of Harvard Divinity School takes on a new role as faculty chair of the Committee on Ethnicity, Migration Rights (EMR), the interdepartmental program that focuses on group’s title categories, paying particular attention to Asian American, Latinx, and Native American studies.  She discusses her vision for EMR’s evolving role on campus and how her work with the committee connects to her own fields of study in an article written for The Harvard Gazette.  The article can be found here.

HTI Dissertation Year Scholar Publishes Essays
Sometimes, it is difficult for students to get published (let alone trying to do so while finishing your dissertation!) Well, Yohana Junker (2018-2019 HTI Dissertation Year Scholar) could be the exception.  Three of her essays awoke the interest of different journals! The first essay will be published in the Center for the Art and Religion's (CARe) Fall catalog entitled Gestures to the Divine: Reflections on Eco-Spirituality and it is forthcoming (end of September 2018). The essay is entitled "Interlace: On Art, Ecology, and Indigenous Knowledge." The second essay is also forthcoming in the volume Sustainable Societies: Interreligious Interdisciplinary Responses, Springer Sophia Series, 2018 entitled "Decolonizing Landscapes: Artistic Activism and Eco-religious Imagination." The last chapter will be forthcoming 2019 with SBL press, in the volume Painted Portrayals: The Art of Characterizing Biblical Figures entitled "The Painted Bathsheba: Unsettling the Gaze." Congratulations, Yohana!
HTI Mentor receives The Ann O’Hara Graff Memorial Award
Dr. Nancy Pineda-Madrid (HTI Mentor), Associate Professor of Theology and Latino/Latina Ministry at Boston College, was honored by the Catholic Theological Society of America (CTSA) at its convention with the Ann O’Hara Graff Memorial Award from the Women’s Consultation in Constructive Theology of the CTSA.  Concurrently, Pineda-Madrid received the 2018 Outstanding Educator Award from Latina Center MARIA in Boston. These awards recognize Pineda-Madrid for her scholarship, clear and prophetic voice in the academy on behalf of women.
HTI Mentor wins a 2018 Catholic Press Award
HTI congratulates Dr. Jean-Pierre Ruiz (HTI Mentor) on being awarded third place for Best Regular Column: Scripture for his Sunday Scripture column in the diocesan newspaper entitled The Tablet, “Sunday’s Scriptures.”  The 2018 Catholic Press Awards, CPA Book Awards, CPA Gabriel Awards and CPA Student Awards are determined by the inclusion of 2939 entries from 233 publication members, as well as 506 individual staff and freelance members who were eligible to enter the contest.
The Christian Feminist Scholarship in memory of Nancy A. Hardesty awarded to HTI Scholar
Elyssa Salinas‐Lazarski’s (2018-2019 HTI Comprehensive Exam-Year Scholar) passion to construct a sex positive theology from paramount figures in the Christian tradition, including Paul, Augustine, and Luther, comes from growing up in a matriarchal household that gave her the gift of curiosity and the belief that womanhood was something to be treasured. Salinas-Lazarski shared that, “As a child, I was left Susan B. Anthony coins under my pillow from the Tooth Fairy, and when I was sixteen my grandmother gifted me a copy of The Feminine Mystique by Betty Friedan. From then on it was only natural for me to gravitate toward feminist scholars.” Citing her call to do work centering around “sexual and body shame people have endured in the church,” she explains, “The work I do interrogates preconceived notions of sex and dismantles them, but I know that I cannot stop there. While sitting in the rubble, I will construct a liberating theology of sex that I believe is part of this tradition but that has until now been dominated by patriarchal politics.  This work will require an in‐depth knowledge of the tradition along with an interdisciplinary understanding of how sex is treated in other areas, including, but not limited to, gender studies and queer studies.” The $1,000 Nancy A. Hardesty Memorial Scholarship awarded to Elyssa in June, will help her continue to step into a leadership role that supports and promotes Christian feminism. The Nancy A. Hardesty Memorial Scholarship recognizes students like Elyssa  who aspire to exemplify the values and achievements of Nancy A. Hardesty, a founding member of the EEWC‐Christian Feminism Today organization.
Louisville Institute announces its awards.  HTI scholars make the list!
Louisville Institute announced the recipients of its Doctoral Fellowship, Dissertation Fellowship, Postdoctoral Fellowship and Project Grant for Researchers Awards.  HTI is proud of your scholars who made this prestigious list of recipients:
Chauncey D. F. Handy (2018-2019 HTI Second Year Scholar) of Princeton Theological Seminary, and Elyssa Joanne Salinas (2018-2019 HTI Comprehensive Exams Scholar) of Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary received the Doctoral Fellowship Award.
Lydia Hernández-Marcial (2018-2019 HTI Dissertation Year Scholar) of the Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago received the honorary dissertation fellowship for her dissertation work entitled, Life under the Sun: Contradictions and Resistance in Ecclesiastes from a Puerto Rican Perspective.
Dr. Jennifer Christine Owens-Jofré (2017-2018 HTI Dissertation-Year Scholar) of The Graduate Theological Union has been awarded the Louisville Institute Post-Doctoral Fellowship at Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary where she will be the Visiting Assistant Professor of Constructive Theology.
Dr. Néstor Medina (2006-2007 HTI Dissertation-Year Scholar) of Emmanuel College was awarded a Project Grant for Researchers for the project titled: Unmaking the multiple faces of Mestizaje.

HTI Pilot Internship Program at the Hispanic Summer Program held at member school Southern Methodist University, Dallas, Texas

Funding provided by the Lilly Endowment Inc. allowed HTI to create a pilot internship program. During the summer, Chauncey D. F. Handy (2018-2019 HTI Second Year Scholar), PhD student at Princeton Theological Seminary, interned as a Teaching Assistant for Dr. Ahida Pilarski (HTI Mentor and Steering Committee Member) in a course called ‘(Im)migration, Culture, and Gender in the Old Testament: A Review from a Latinx Perspective’ at the Hispanic Summer Program held at HTI member school Southern Methodist University.   Chauncey shared, “During this week, I worked closely with Dr. Pilarski to introduce students to a variety of responses from Latinx scholars to issues of immigration in biblical texts. It was a delight to see our students develop through the intensive course. Beyond the time with our engaged, thoughtful students, I was truly fortunate to work with Dr. Pilarski.”  At the end of the week, Chauncey shared that although he had previous teaching experiences, this experience was different because “Dr. Pilarski’s mentorship helped me to grow as a Latinx teacher and scholar in a way I have not experienced in other teaching roles in my home institution. Many thanks to Dr. Pilarski, our students, HSP, HTI, and the Lilly Endowment Inc., for providing this incredible opportunity!”
The HTI First Position Pilot Program, a Priceless Experience
The anxiety of transitioning into becoming first-time faculty can be exacerbated when one finds oneself being the only person from an underrepresented group, or one of only a few, in a department or an entire school. Fortunately for four HTI graduates beginning this journey, a planning grant from the Lilly Endowment Inc. made it possible for them to attend a Pilot Program for Graduates in their First Position at HTI’s Professional Development Conference from June 24th to June 28th at member school Princeton Theological Seminary. The faculty-led team comprised of Dr. Elizabeth Conde-Frazier (1997-1998 HTI Dissertation Fellow, HTI Mentor, Advisory Committee Member, Selection Committee Member), Coordinator of Relations with Entities of Theological Education at the Asociación para la Educación Teológica Hispana (AETH); Dr. Hosffman Ospino, Associate Professor of Theology and Religious Education, Boston College, School of Theology and Ministry; Dr. Peter Casarella (HTI Mentor and HTI Member Council Member) Associate Professor of Theology and Director of the Latin American North American Church Concerns Project at University of Notre Dame; and Dr. Margarita Benítez, Senior Associate, Excelencia in Education, worked together to create a new curriculum for these graduates. Dr. Ospino counted it a privilege to join these newly minted scholars with whom he and the rest of the team spent several days together talking about personal stories, sharing advice, addressing questions that every new faculty asks when arriving at a new institution, and questions that some perhaps had not even considered.  Reflecting on the experience, Dr. Ospino observes, “All in all, it was a tremendous opportunity to build community and to let our younger colleagues know that they were not alone. Transitions are liminal moments that fluctuate between the joy of previous achievements and the uncertainty of what is next. It is exactly at these liminal moments when we all need the presence of mentors and guides. As we enter a new stage of our lives with others who have more experience, we realize that the uncertainty and strangeness that comes with the new moment are not that frightening as long as we are accompanied. We all need people who ‘have been there’ and ‘have done that.’ This is a brilliant initiative and I hope that the HTI continues to replicate it in the years to come. The decades of experience mentoring Latinx scholars that the HTI brings and the true sense of comunidad that it fosters in all its initiatives make the experience priceless.”  
Scholars Get Ready for “Open Plaza”
Your HTI is working diligently on the development of the Open Plaza webpages which will eventually house blogs, podcasts, and videos. Dr. Mariana Alessandri (2008-2009 HTI Dissertation Year Scholar, Book Prize Reader), Assistant Professor of Philosophy at The University of Texas Rio Grande, gives us an inside look on the first blog-writing training for Open Plaza, which took place in July, with the participation of seven HTI scholars and En Conjunto Association members. By the end of the four day training, each scholar had written a post. The training covered length, style, and topic choice, among other things. Here some insights by Alessandri:
“Since we were the first team to think collectively about the nature and intention of the blogs, we had the opportunity to determine what function we want it to serve in society. We decided that the blogs should be a conversation starter, but that it should not be the site of a virtual conversation. We would prefer people to meet in person to discuss the blog posts or any other issue than debate one another from behind a screen.
The blogs primary goal is to get people thinking about issues that affect Latinx, written from the point of view of Latinx scholars. Latinx voices are seldom heard in US public spaces, until now. There are few forums that focus on theology in the public square, and we want Open Plaza to be the source where the public can come to get insights about the Latinx community.
We discussed the complicated nature of communicating our own opinions, which might not necessarily align with those of other HTI scholars. We want Open Plaza to be a forum where we can write from our perspective without feeling like we have to represent the whole. It is not one unified voice. We represent many voices, but all Latinx. We would need a disclaimer to this effect.
Each day of the training we talked about the details and the big picture. We decided we want the forum to be bilingual, for instance, to reflect how we often speak and think. We want it to be personal and intellectual, since we are both. From the first blog we produced and shared with one another, it became clear that, as a group, we were interested in at least two senderos: 1) Latinx identity, and 2) current events. We want to be able to speak to issues that other Latinx can relate to, even if we have different experiences.
On our last day, we talked about the opinion essays as a whole. The title ‘Open Plaza’ is itself a fertile image that we wanted to draw from. Es un lugar latinoamericano en donde hay muchas actividades públicas. We discussed who we are supposed to represent in the plaza: are we the dancers enjoying the music, or los músicos playing for ourselves and others? Are we the shopkeepers selling our ideas, or are we kids playing marbles, or even domino-players living like time has stopped? Do we strike up leisurely discussions with others over coffee, as though we have all the time in the world for talking about important issues? In the end, we saw ourselves as the news-callers, those who introduce and comment on the news of the day for the coffee-drinkers to muse over. We all agreed on the importance of ‘sobremesa,’ which is a typical and almost untranslatable concept into English. The ‘Sobremesa Life’ website explains sobremesa as “the leisurely time after we've finished eating, but before we get up from the table. Time spent in conversation, digesting, relaxing, enjoying. Certainly not rushing.”
Reflections on the HTI Writers and Professional Development Conference
From June 22 - 28, HTI welcomed more than 80 participants attending the Summer Writers Week and the 2018 Professional Development Conference. At these two events, the 2018-2019 HTI Scholars had an opportunity to not only learned from seasoned faculty but to network and build relationships. Dissertation scholars also had the opportunity to work on their dissertations. Here are reflections by some of the participants:

HTI “En Conjunto” Writing Week: An Oasis toward the Finish Line

“I was in a bit of a rut.  I could not get any kind of writing momentum for the dissertation.  I was writing, but I was constantly hitting roadblocks.  To be honest, most of them were ‘mental’ blocks I had created,” José Francisco Morales Torres (2018-2019 HTI Dissertation Year Scholar), PhD Candidate (ABD) at Claremont School of Theology, describes before attending the HTI Writer’s Week.   And after attending, Morales Torres shared, “At the Writer’s Week I had an opportunity to meet with Ulrike Guthrie (my editor) and with Joanne Rodríguez (HTI executive director).  They spoke life to me. They affirmed my gifts and passions for this work.  Also, I spent intentional time with other Latinx scholars writing their dissertations, who – like me – experience both the joys and toils of pouring ourselves out on paper.  This ‘teología en conjunto’ was just what I needed. When I look back at the whole of my doctoral journey, I will remember HTI Writers Week as crucial and, dare I say, life-renewing point in that journey – as an oasis amidst the isolating trek toward the finish line.”

Identity, Pregnancy, and Accompaniment at the HTI Professional Development Conference

“Each year in a doctoral program you encounter different challenges, and I thought that being pregnant in my last semester of coursework would just be a new kind of challenge. I did not realize it would reshape my identity as a student. Keeping up with my usual work ethic was not working due to constant nausea, crippling hunger, and absolute exhaustion. My body was new to me, and my mind became foggy. I began to question if I could continue, a thought I kept to myself and did not even whisper aloud. I thought there was no way I could catch up, and my drive seemed to disappear. I felt like a fraud.
This was amplified when I left for HTI because I felt like I shouldn't be there. I shouldn’t be sitting alongside my brilliant colleagues. I was terrified of being found out.
But then somehow this group of people lifted me from that painful place.
Sometimes God gives you a people and a place just when it is needed. I needed this space with these people more than they will ever know. I needed the voices of my peers and workshop leaders to inspire me to get back to work. I needed the support of HTI to be reminded that this baby will breathe life into my scholarship.
I've been in a rut, stuck in paralyzing fear and this time with HTI has given me the tools to dig myself out and face the next step in this degree.”
A Reflection by Elyssa Salinas (2018-2019 HTI Comprehensive Exams Scholar), PhD student at Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary.

During the summer, many of your scholars took the opportunity to exercise their scholarship outside of the classroom.  Here are their stories:
HTI networking funds advances HTI’s En Conjunto model
“I always wanted to have conversations with Dr. Jutta Jokiranta of the University of Helsinki about my dissertation since she has been the leading voice in the sociology of religious communities' boundaries for the Dead Sea Scrolls, and I desperately was trying to find a sponsor to present at the Society of Biblical Literature International Meetings in Helsinki, Finland.  Receiving HTI networking funds and additional financial support from Andrews University to attend the meeting was an answer to my prayer,” exclaimed, Rodrigo de Galiza Barbosa (2018-2019 HTI Proposal and Research Scholar).             
The conversations with Dr. Jokiranta were extremely productive because she gave me advice about my methodology, the use of socio-linguistic tools in order to flesh out the feelings and ideological map of the outsider in the Dead Sea Scrolls as well as Latinx Christian writers. I was encouraged and motivated by our conversations and excited that she was open to future inquiries.  While at the conference she introduced to me to two Swedish scholars writing on topics related to my dissertation.  She also requested that I submit a proposal for the next International Conference on Dead Sea Scrolls (2019) taking place at St. Andrews University in Scotland.  If my proposal is accepted, the opportunity of presenting my ideas in an international conference will help me refine my dissertation methodology.
Additionally, I met at the conference another Brazilian scholar who is working with the Dead Sea Scrolls, and my hope is to continue to stay in touch and potentially work on future collaborative projects.  This trip was a huge success for me and a testimony to HTI’s en conjunto model.”
Important reminder from the Gospel of Luke preached at the Presbyterian Association of Musicians Montreat Worship and Music Conference from June 17-29, 2018
This year’s theme at the Montreat Worship and Music Conference was “Sacraments and Seasons,” and each workshop service focused on one season of the Christian calendar. To captivate the imagination of the congregants, guest preacher Dr. Eric D. Barreto (2008-2009 HTI Dissertation Year Scholar, HTI Steering Committee Member),  Frederick and Margaret L. Weyerhaeuser Associate Professor of New Testament at Princeton Theological Seminary, encouraged them, “to dwell in the narrative world Luke crafts for us,  to wander in the literary landscape Luke sketches and how, whether new to us or old, old stories, they are alive, because God speaks through them still, for God still speaks through us, through our singing, our praying, our hoping, our grieving, our reading, our preaching.” Barreto summarized the week's sermon writing, "The opening verses of the Gospel of Luke are a treasure chest for biblical scholars. In these few verses, Luke pulls back the curtain to tell us why he writes: 'so that you may know the truth concerning the things about which you have been instructed' (1:4). Apparently, even these first century Christians needed to be reminded about the center of their hopes. In the midst of life’s many trials, they too needed to be reminded that God’s grace was wide and all encompassing. In recent days, I’ve needed that reminder. In the midst of the life’s many joys, they too needed to be reminded that love is costly and beautiful, that love will drive us to our neighbors with compassion because the Gospel of Luke will not provide facile answers to our hard questions. The 'truth' to which Luke calls us is not simple or one dimensional. Instead, Luke invites us into the hardest stuff of life only for us to learn once again that God has chosen to meet us among those we called wretched, among those who mourn, among those who suffer, among those who feel deserted and alone and despondent. In short, God has made 'nowhere' God’s home. And when we meet God there, we will see God’s grace in an entirely new light, again and again."
Think Globally, Act Locally!
This summer three HTI Graduates attended the third annual Global Ethicists Network Conference in Sarajevo organized by The Catholic Theological Ethicists in the World Church (CTEWC), and titled, “A Critical Time for Bridge Building: Catholic Theological Ethics Today.”  Dr. Jeremy Cruz’s (2010-2011 HTI Dissertation Year Scholar) presentation, "Transcending the 'Harvest of Empire': Faith and Farmworker Struggles for Economic Democracy in the U.S.A.," included opportunities to challenge the CTEWC network to consider how its future regional worldwide activities can best support indigenous and diasporic peoples from the Global South. Dr. Victor Carmona (2010-2011 HTI Dissertation Year Scholar) and Dr. Maria Teresa Dávila (2004-2005 HTI Dissertation Year Scholar, HTI Mentor) discussed potential cross-border initiatives with the Academy of Catholic Hispanic Theologians of the United States (ACHTUS), and the exploration of building bridges for Caribbean initiatives and networks.
Dávila reflects, “the conference brought over 500 Christians, Muslims, Jews, and Catholic ethicists from around the world to build bridges: with each other, with the past, with the future, with other religious traditions, with other continents, with questions bigger than any of us can address individually.”  While walking the streets of Sarajevo, she reflects, “History books don't always come to life, but in Sarajevo I felt surrounded by history past, present, and future. Every step, every building, every sidewalk marked with a bullet hole from the war in 1995 reminded me that all human paths, all human suffering, represents the story of a sister or a brother. As a Latina, but particularly as a Puerto Rican, the Catholic Theological Ethics in the World Church (CTEWC) network has always seen me squarely gravitating toward my Latin American family. The connections I have made with that family are deep, joyous, beautiful, and life affirming. But as Puerto Rico is part of the United States, (and I currently live and teach in Massachusetts), I couldn't help but pay attention to what the ‘north’ was learning about theological ethics at such a rich international conference. A bit selfishly I kept these two interactions separated, like the bifurcated worlds Latinxs often experience in the United States. I ought to have challenged myself to build stronger bridges between these two worlds in order to cross them more fluidly and frequently. I found myself halfway as I crossed the many real and metaphorical bridges in Sarajevo.”
Additionally, Dr. Cruz shared, “Whereas I learned a great deal from local leaders in Sarajevo and from scholars working in distant countries, the conference design also encouraged me and others to ‘think globally, act locally.’”
HTI Ambassador Dr. Diaz engages on Human Rights in Washington, DC
Ambassador Dr. Miguel Diaz, (1998-1999 HTI Dissertation Year Scholar, 2002 HTI Book Prize Winner, HTI Mentor), The John Courtney Murray University Chair in Public Service at Loyola University Chicago and Ambassador to the Holy See, Retired, has been busy at work discussing human rights in Washington DC, after joining two organizations and presenting at the gathering entitled,  ‘The Fight for International Religious Freedom: Perspectives from the Vatican,’ at the  Religious Freedom Institute in Washington, DC, held on July 24, 2018.  At this event, Ambassador Diaz spoke at length about the significant contribution that John Courtney Murray, S.J. made to contemporary Roman Catholic teaching on religious freedom, officially promulgated in Vatican II’s document entitled, Dignitatis humanae.  He stated, “that the document marked a turning point in the Church’s understanding of religious freedom, which went from ‘error has no rights’ to all human persons have fundamental rights, especially freedom of conscience.”
While in Washington, he also participated in a meeting that convened national leaders at the Atlantic Council.  The meeting explored ways to defend and promote international human rights in the area of gender and human sexuality. “The Atlantic Council promotes constructive leadership and engagement in international affairs based on the Atlantic Community's central role in meeting global challenges” (  As a new member of the Ambassador’s Circle he met with the leadership team at the National Democratic Institute.
Ambassador Diaz offers his expertise as an educator, religious scholar, and diplomat and in conversation with parliamentarians, professionals, members of Congress, current and former government officials, corporate executives, and NGO leaders associated with human rights’ organizations, in hopes to create a holistic defense of human rights and human dignity, specifically challenging the criminalization and/or marginalization of persons on the basis of their gender and sexual orientation. These targeted conversations will seek to promote more just and humane national and international policies that will impact the daily life of manifold and varied communities of oppressed persons across the world.
HTI Mentoring encourages international En Conjunto networks
“My interest in race, the Black Atlantic, and theology has connected me with the Caribbean Philosophical Association (CPA), but it was Dr. Santiago Slabodsky (Hofstra University - HTI Mentor), who encouraged me to participate in their annual meeting, titled ‘Shifting the Geography of Reason XV: Ways of Knowing, Past and Future,” shared Vinicius Marinho (2018-2019 HTI Comprehensive Exams Scholar), PhD student at The University of Chicago. At the meeting he found that, “indeed, CPA members are committed to investigating the multiple dimensions of the undersides of history and to theorizing from those standpoints.” The 2018 meeting took place in Dakar, Sènègal, from June 19-22. There, Vinicius spoke in a transdisciplinary panel about ‘Political Theology and Decolonial Thought’ and was asked by Dr. An Yountae (California State University, Northridge) to participate in a workshop about his forthcoming co-edited book on race and coloniality in the study of religion. Vinicius shared “in addition to speaking in two faculty panels, my trip to Dakar also afforded the opportunity to meet a few leading Africana intellectuals, including the Brazilian writer Conceição Evaristo and the philosopher Souleymane Bachir Diagne. Dr. Evaristo described her active contribution in the emergence of the Liberation Theology movement in Brazil, the Afro-religious influence upon her literary oeuvre, and the autobiographical character of her distinctive writing technique, escrevivência. In the plenary session, Dr. Bachir Diagne and other philosophers discussed the advantages of broadening the concept of slavery. Articulating African, Caribbean, and African-American sources, they suggest an existential notion of slavery reveals more about the meanings of being human and the emergence of racial phenomena than historical or economic analyses of slavery as a modern institution. This opportunity broadened the disciplinary range of my research and expanded my En Conjunto network.”
HTI Scholar presents on webinar for the UN International Decade for People of African descent.
Dr. Néstor Medina (2006-2007 HTI Dissertation Scholar), Visiting Scholar at the Centre for the Research in Religion at Emmanuel College, University of Toronto, presented on the topic, “Ethnoracial relations, the emergence of anti-Black racism, and connections to the Doctrine of Discovery” on October 1, 2018.  Medina was part of a webinar The United Church of Canada, in partnership with the World Council of Churches’ Commission of the Churches on International Affairs hosted on anti-Black racism and Afrophobia. This webinar was part of the church’s participation in the United Nations International Decade for People of African Descent.
The Unfolding of History at a Dig at Khirbet Safra
“I saw the unfolding of history in front of my eyes while our hands touched the ancient artifacts and our minds put together several pieces of this historical puzzle,” Michael Orellana (2018-2019 Dissertation Year Scholar), a PhD candidate (ABD) in Biblical and Ancient Near Eastern Archaeology at Andrews University, revealed while performing an excavation with Dr. Paul Gregor, director of the dig.  In the six weeks of the project, the team witnessed the uncovering of ancient structures, ceramics and other tools of the daily life in the Ancient Middle East, and each one of the objects would tell them a story of the values and social organization of ancient people in the region. As they uncovered them, each excavator learned more about their historical legacy and their meaning and how to describe each piece was perplexing.  Additionally, the daily interactions with Jordanians increased the team’s comprehension of the Middle East in the past and today.  Orellana believes that “this is especially important in the face of the several social and political challenges of our modern society. Perhaps, more than an archaeological excavation, this is a unique life-changing experience in which appreciation for what is different is an indispensable value to being able to engage with the history of the Middle East in a proper way.”

HTI Scholar’s Participation in Panel Aids in Dissertation Development
Nuevas Generaciones: Doing Teología y Pastoral en/de Conjunto,” a panel sponsored by the Hispanic Theology and Ministry Program (HTMP), was held at Catholic Theological Union on May 25, 2018, in order to honor the continual legacy of Monsignor Arturo J. Bañuelas (HTI Visionary). Mgsr. Bañuelas, who currently serves as pastor of St. Mark’s Parish in the diocese of El Paso, Texas, has been widely recognized for his advocacy for immigrants and justice at the border, and continues to shape Latinx Theology and Ministry and Catholicism in the 21st century in a profound way.

Multiple participants responded by expressing their gratitude for the event, including panel member, Dr. Jennifer Owens-Jofre (2017-2018 HTI Dissertation Year Scholar), who presented on her research, “Our Lady of Guadalupe and the Lay Leadership of Latina Catholic Women.” Thanking Dr. Carmen Nanko-Fernández (HTI Selection Committee and Mentor) for organizing the gathering, Owens-Jofre shared, “The conversations I had with her [Nanko-Fernández] and with Msgr. Bañuelas over that weekend clarified my thinking about what I would include in Chapter Five of my dissertation, which looks at implications of devotion to Our Lady of Guadalupe for Catholic understandings of lay ecclesial ministry.” She went on to celebrate the ministry of Msgr. Bañuelas, highlighting his kindness and the immense impact he has had on bridging the gaps between lay people and church leadership.
In addition to Owens-Jofre, the panel also included Rev. Dr. Edwin Aponte (1997-1998 HTI Dissertation Year Scholar), who presented on responding to the scholarship of Nuestras Nuevas Generaciones; and Nanko-Fernández, who provided a summary assessment of the presentations and the life and work of Msgr. Bañuelas, as well as offered a forecast of possible future directions of Latinx ministry.

Our sincerest thanks to Msgr. Bañuelas—celebrated theologian, pastor, educator, and activist.

HTI Scholar’s field disappointment at excavation in Sicily, Italy results in finding the country’s main entry gate for refugees
Carina O. Prestes (2018-2019 HTI Comprehensive Exams Scholar), PhD student at Andrews University, could not wait to be the field director for an archaeological excavation in the desirable location in the Mediterranean with a millennia of occupational history.  The site where she was digging has a fourth century funerary Christian basilica, the earliest yet known in Sicily.  Additionally, this would allow her to visit nearby sites that would contribute to her dissertation.  Prestes reported, “On the first day of the excavation we opened a new field expecting to find some architectural remains within some days of work. At the end of the first week, we were hopeful because a line of stones started to emerge from the earth, looking like a wall. But as the excavation continued during the second week, we reached the bedrock and no valuable architecture was found, just a destruction layer.  In order to not be totally discouraged we playfully called it ‘field disappointment.’ The failure to find domestic architecture in the excavation of the new field was compensated by the good interactions with people from very different backgrounds: American students, Italian volunteers and students, and refugees from different countries. Sicily is the main entrance gate to Europe for refugees. People from different backgrounds speaking different languages had to push themselves out of their comfort zone in order to be able to communicate and work together. It was very interesting to witness such a diverse group create bonds and help each other despite the many differences in nationality, language, color, culture, and religion.”
Although the dig did not turn out as originally anticipated, Prestes was still able to contribute in a report at a conference in a medieval castle in the city of Salemi about the virtual reconstruction of the basilica floor mosaic. The excavation findings will be viewed at the city museum exhibit at the end of this year.
Addressing the needs of neighbors at the “Discipulado4K” Lutheran National Hispanic Conference
The sixth National Hispanic Convention (LCMS), a triennial event for Lutheran Hispanic leaders (pastors, deaconesses, and lay leaders) provides a time for these leaders to discuss ecclesial matters, hear plenaries and workshops, and enjoy each other's fellowship.  The title for this triennial gathering was  "Discipulado4K," and covering the following themes: Kyrios (Lord, Señor), Kairós (opportune time, tiempo oportuno), Kerygma (proclamation, proclamación), and Koinonia (fellowship, comunión), Dr. Leopoldo Sánchez (2002-2003 HTI Dissertation Year Scholar, HTI Mentor), Werner R.H. Krause and Elizabeth Ringger Krause Professor of Hispanic Ministries, Systematic Theology, and Director of the Center for Hispanic Studies at Concordia Seminary, was the main plenary speaker.  Sánchez's presentation was based on his latest book, Sculptor Spirit: Models of Sanctification from Spirit Christology, published by IVP Academic, to be released February 2019, where he showed how biblical narratives of Jesus as bearer and giver of God's Spirit can address the spiritual needs and hopes of various North American neighbors, including US Latinxs.  In his talk Sánchez stated, “we must study the Cronos we are living in so that we can apply the Kairós hearers of the Word will find most compelling to fill their spiritual thirst."
HTI Scholar reflects on a Mystic behind a Wall in the 1500s and US/Mexican Border

Lis Valle-Ruiz (HTI Dissertation-Year Scholar 2018-2019) PhD Candidate (ABD) at Vanderbilt Divinity School, recently visited Ávila, Spain to do research on Teresa de Jesús, and wrote a reflection titled, “Teresa, the Wall and Me.” Here is an excerpt:

“Teresa is a figure that captivates me and hurts me. Her visions and her theological production promote love of neighbor and union with God, but at the same time, indoctrinated by the prevailing ideas of her time, she resented Jews and Muslims. ‘In the face of so many enemies it is not possible for us to sit with our hands folded,’ she wrote. Teresa de Jesús, lover of God, in her youth adopted the ideology of exclusion and the wall and saw no contradiction in her proselytizing and religious intolerance with her preaching of deep love. The United States today finds itself in an analogous situation with a government that professes itself as Christian while it promotes exclusion, the ethnic cleansing of the country and the expulsion of those who are different, accompanied by the construction of a wall to prevent them from returning. Avila in the 1500s and the United States today are similar. Reflecting on Teresa's life, I concluded that the real enemies are not Jews, nor Muslims, nor immigrants from the South. Other human beings should not be the enemies we fight against. The walls are the real enemies. Let us fight against the very walls and what they represent.”


Disaster Relief Partners walk with Seminario Evangélico to Rise Up
Ten months after hurricanes Irma and Maria devastated Puerto Rico the aftermath is still mentally, physically, and economically present.  Many roads are still severely damaged leaving no signage or working traffic lights, making it precarious to travel any time of the day, and more so after sundown.  Some locations look like ghost towns filled with abandoned damaged buildings, and blue-tarped rooftops.  Residents cringe at the mention of a tropical storm because still today they live with electrical outages and no running water.  This is the Puerto Rico that Dr. Rev. Victor Aloyo, Jr. and Rev. Joanne Rodríguez encountered while visiting the Seminario Evangelico de Puerto Rico from July 14th to July 19th.  Supported by member school Princeton Theological Seminary and its President, Rev. Dr. M. Craig Barnes, Aloyo and Rodríguez made this visit to research the possibilities for disaster relief funds from a group of denominations to support the immediate and urgent needs of the Seminary to rebuild its infrastructure, provide necessary educational services for its students, and technical assistance.  Aloyo and Rodríguez partnered with Seminario Evangélico’s President Doris Garcia, and administrative staff, faculty, board members, current students, and alumni to garner qualitative and quantitative information for the writing of disaster relief grant to submit to the American Baptist Church (USA), Evangelical Lutheran Church, United Church of Christ, Presbyterian Church (USA), Disciples of Christ, and the United Methodist Church (USA) for grants.  A total of 57 persons were interviewed for this study, and an extensive literature review and a SWOT (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats) Analysis were prepared to provide appropriate recommendations on their most pressing needs in mitigation and revitalization for financial support. "It was an incredibly emotional and challenging trip, yet one filled with hope and inspiration," Aloyo said, "we were honored to be in their midst!" Through this effort there has been a total of $275,000 donated for the Seminary’s relief and mitigation efforts from Church World Service, Disciples of Christ/Week of Compassion, Presbyterian Disaster Assistance, and the United Church of Christ.
HTI consortium member schools celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month
Through different events your HTI Member Schools paid tribute to the generations of Latinxs who have influenced and enriched this country. Below are some of the activities that took place in different parts of the United States.
Reaping What We Sow:  Roots of Central American Migration
Reaping What We Sow: Roots of Central American Migration, was the title for 2018 Herencia Lectures at member school Princeton Theological Seminary.  On October 5, 2018, Dr. Rady Roldan-Figueroa (2002-2003 HTI Comprehensive Exams Scholar, HTI Mentor), Associate Professor of the History of Christianity at Boston University School of Theology began his lecture titled, Sanctuary Movement in New England 1980-1990,” by showing how archive material he had researched (books, pamphlets, tapes, minutes, etc.) showed a historical involvement in this movement from a number of churches across New England, especially Massachusetts and New Hampshire during this time period.  Furthermore, he gave detailed information and highlighted the participation of two religious groups, the Community Church of Boston and the Jewish congregation of Beth El of Sudbury.
The afternoon panel included Dr. Patricia Fernandez Kelly from Princeton University and Dr. Mark Taylor (HTI Mentor) from Princeton Theological Seminary, who dialogued on the dynamics of Central American Migration and the consequences of “US powered violence.” This session was moderated by Francisco J. Peláez-Díaz (2018-2019 HTI Dissertation Scholar).
Dr. Juan D. González, award-winning broadcast journalist and investigative reporter, co-host of Democracy Now!, and author of "Harvest of Empire: A History of Latinos in America," delivered the evening keynote Herencia Lecture where he gave a breakdown of the current immigration crisis in the United States as a historical consequence of the US intervention in Latin America.  González detailed how the influx of migrants from Africa or Syria to Europe is the effect of NATO and US intervention and war in those regions, and now in our contemporary setting we see the second great influx of migrants from these countries that are now escaping gang and drug related violence; a second reckoning of problems originating in the United States. Professor González equates the past colonial powers with “empires,” motivated by capitalism through the vehicle of globalization.
The Herencia Lectures events of the day were sponsored by the Office of Multicultural Relations, the Latinx Collegium, and the Religion & Society Department at Princeton Seminary, and by the Hispanic Theological Initiative.
Herencia Cultural Festival at Princeton Theological Seminary
“I am so sad. This is not the place that I wanted for you. After so much work in my country, so much misunderstanding from my family, so much sacrifice crossing the desert. All those months in the factory. And look where we ended up. We are here, locked up, about to be deported.“
This is an excerpt from “Manos indocumentadas” (Undocumented Hands), a bilingual cantata performed by the Cántico Nuevo Choir at the Herencia Cultural Festival (HCF) at member school Princeton Theological Seminary on Friday, October 12, 2018. The emotive piece captured the pain and sorrow that so many are experiencing because of the unjust and inhumane realities of the United States’ current immigration system. It also highlighted the United States’ fundamental identity as a country of immigrants, and it spoke to the immense strength and bravery of those who have left their homelands behind to protect and provide for their families.   

 Launched this year, the Herencia Cultural Festival purpose is to showcase and honor the various Latinx cultural contributions, as well as the strength, beauty, and resilience of these communities in the United States.  Also performing at the HCF was the Peruvian Folkloric Dance Ensemble, and to end the event group Cimarrones invited students, faculty, and friends to dance to the Puerto Rican rhythms of Bomba y Plena.
Other events that honored the Latinx culture.

Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary
Lecture: Lived Religion in the Borderlands: Marginal Identities and Heterotopic Saints: In honor of National Hispanic Heritage Month 2018, the Hispanic-Latinx Center at Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary welcomed Rev. Dr. Daisy L. Machado, professor of American religious history at Union Theological Seminary in New York, to present her lecture, “Lived Religion in the Borderlands: Marginal Identities and Heterotopic Saints on October 9, 2018.
Andrews University
Una Voz. Many Lands: This year, the Office for Diversity & Inclusion, the Division of Campus & Student Life, the Department of Music and the Office of Campus Ministries partnered with the Andrews University Latino/a Association (AULA), Adelante and the Berrien Springs Spanish Church to put on an amazing slate of events as they celebrated the depth and beauty of Hispanic culture both at their campus, and around the world. One of the events included lectures, worshiping, art exhibit, soccer tournament, music and food. Dr. Ingrid Slikkers, assistant professor of social work, led a Forum with the help of three students that spoke about their work with a local nonprofit organization serving unaccompanied children from Central America.
Baylor University
Alfredo Corchado, award-winning Mexican-American journalist and author who has covered Mexico for many years, spoke at Baylor during Hispanic Heritage Month. He is currently the Dallas Morning News’ Border-Mexico correspondent and the author of Homelands: Four Friends, Two Countries, and the Fate of the Great Mexican-American Migration (2018) and Midnight in Mexico: A Reporter’s Journey Through a Country’s Descent into Darkness (2013).
Claremont Graduate University
Dear America: A Conversation with Pulitzer Prize-Winning Journalist Jose Antonio Vargas (September 26): Jose Antonio Vargas made headlines in 2011 for revealing his undocumented status in the New York Times. A Pulitzer Prize–winning journalist, his revelations gave new visibility to the immense challenges faced by young people who immigrated to the United States as children and have established academic and professional careers without citizenship. Vargas visited to discuss Dear America with Southern California Public Radio’s Leslie Berestein Rojas.
Emory University, Candler School of Theology  
The Aquinas Center at Candler School of Theology, Emory University, as part of the Hesburgh Lecture series, invited Dr. Timothy Matovina (HTI Mentor), Professor and Chair of Theology at the University of Notre Dame, to present his lecture titled “Latino Catholicism:  Transformation in America’s Largest Church” on October 15, 2018. This lecture examined the mutual influences of Catholicism and the growing Hispanic population in the United States that are shaping the church, society, and the lives of Catholics in core areas like parishes, apostolic movements, leadership, ministries, worship, and social activism.

Fuller Theological Seminary
The Centro Latino Annual Lectures at Fuller Theological Seminary brought together three world-class scholars from the Latinx world community: Juan José Tamayo (Spaniard Liberation theologian and ecumenist), Ruth Padilla DeBorst (a leading evangélica theologian from Latin America), and Gregory Cuéllar (2005-2006 HTI Dissertation-Year Scholar, HTI Mentor) Associate Professor of Old Testament at Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary. The lectures, entitled, “Towards a Church Without Borders,” sought to tear down the divide based on race, ethnicity, territory, gender, religion, political affiliation, ideology and culture. At the same time, these lectures proposed ways towards the formation of a church that transcends these walls and their corresponding policies.
University of Notre Dame
The Institute for Latino Studies (ILS) at the University of Notre Dame organized a series of lectures, presentations, movies, and cultural events to celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month:
Transformative Latino Leadership Lecture: A Conversation with Luís Alberto Urrea, a prolific and award-winning writer, a master storyteller who uses his dual-culture life experiences to explore greater themes of love, loss and triumph.
Short Film and Guest Speaker: Dr. Steve Larson of Puentes de Salud, clinic featured in Clínica de Migrantes: Clínica de Migrantes paints a compassionate portrait of patients at Puentes de Salud, many of whom left their families behind to perform physically exhausting labor in America for meager wages, and follows the tireless staffers who treat around 10,000 patients each year with limited space and little funding. As Puentes plans a larger facility to accommodate rapidly increasing demand, executive director Dr. Steve Larson and his team must find a way to keep their practice running despite obstacles at every turn.

Play: Bi- presented by theatre group Teatro Milagro: Inspired by the book Flatland, by Edwin Abbott and set in the year 2073 in Tierra Plana, a new nation of squares, walls, and all sorts of boxes, Bi– will break open the boxes of selective classification and raise the question: “What is your ‘bi-dentity?”

Wheaton College
Wheaton College presented this fall a series of exhibitions, film screenings, and music that explore how art is used to draw people together, invite dialogue, and work towards justice in Mexico, Guatemala, and in Chicago. There was an exhibition of photographs by Greg Halvorsen Schreck, titled Original Blessing: A Guatemalan Journey August 20 - September 28, 2018. Through his photographs, the artist explored connections between creation stories, people, land and family. Many of the photographs were made during his recent time in Guatemala. While he was there, he interacted with Indigenous people, families, missionaries, and others who graciously survived and thrived in the midst of Central America's difficult and violent history.  Schreck's Guatemala pictures was shown with earlier photographic portraits inspired by the Biblical story of the first days of creation in Genesis. Other activities included the Mexican Film Festival.
Additionally, on November 2, at 7:30pm at Edman Chapel, the Wheaton College Artist Series will present a concert by Mariachi Herencia de México, an ensemble of students ages 11-18 from Chicago’s immigrant barrios,



WABASH Center Receives the Academy of Catholic Hispanic Theologians of the United States (ACHTUS) Award

“Every year at the Academy of Catholic Hispanic Theologians of United States (ACHTUS) annual meeting we recognize an outstanding organization for their contributions to theology in keeping with the mission of the Academy,” shared Dr. Gilberto A. Ruiz (2010-2011 Dissertation Scholar, and HTI En Conjunto Association Co- Secretary), ACHTUS Treasurer and Assistant Professor of Theology at Saint Anselm College.   As he reflected on the work of the Wabash Center, Ruiz shared, “The Wabash Center has a substantial history of supporting Latinx theology, religion faculty, and doctoral students. In nominating the Wabash Center for the ACHTUS award, ACHTUS members noted the long and continually growing list of Latinx participants in–and leaders of–the various colloquies and workshops hosted by the Wabash Center, several of which have been partnerships with the Hispanic Theological Initiative. I am personally grateful to be among this group, as a participant at a 2013 Wabash/HTI Pedagogy Weekend Workshop for HTI Fellows and a 2014-2015 Pre-Tenure Theological School Faculty workshop, which itself was remarkably diverse along racial, gender, and denominational lines. By regularly putting groups like this together, under the aegis of its policy of confidentiality–remember, ‘What happens at Wabash, stays at Wabash’–the Wabash Center provides a creative space for conversation, support, networking, strategizing, and even conflict that better equips teachers and scholars of theology and religion at different professional levels to navigate our various academic institutional spaces and improve our craft as teachers.”


Preaching in the Interim: Transitional Leadership in the Latino/A Church
By Efraín Agosto (1998-1999 HTI Post-doctoral Scholar, HTI Mentor, HTI Steering Committee)
Paperback: 152 pages
Publisher: Judson Press (October 1, 2018)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 081701795X
ISBN-13: 978-0817017958

A sermonic approach to ministry for a church in transition. Featuring sermons that were preached in a congregation between the season of Easter and Christmas during an interim season of pastoral transition, this book gives attention to the church’s need for renewed leadership, exploring the nature of church for a new day, while honoring its history and reminding the congregation of the content of Christian teaching, while moving forward into a new future. Includes commentary by the author about various pertinent features in the sermons, particularly in the context of an urban Latinx church. Also available in Spanish as an ebook edition!
The Grace of Medellín: History, Theology and Legacy
By O. Ernesto Valiente (Author, 2007-2008 HTI Dissertation Scholar, HTI Mentor), Margaret Eletta Guider OSF (Author), Felix Palazzi (Author)
Paperback: 304 pages
Publisher: Convivium Press; 1 edition (October 11, 2018)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1934996726
ISBN-13: 978-1934996720
The Second CELAM (Latin American Bishops Council) Conference held in Medellin, Colombia, in 1968, proved to be a movement of grace, not only for the church in Latin America and Caribbean, but also for the world church at large. Viewed as foundational for the reception of Vatican II, the evolution of liberation theologies and the emergence of diverse ecclesial movements committed to peace, justice and the integrity of creation, the grace of Medellin continues to be poured out upon the People of God, especially the poor, the powerless and the most vulnerable. Given the current realities of the church and world today, this new volume focuses on those grace-filled aspects of Medellin that warrant remembrance, recognition and reinvention, particularly within the context of the United States. This collaborative effort on the part of twenty theologians, social ethicists, and historians take account of the action of the Holy Spirit and the transformative power of Medellin in terms of its history, theology and legacy.
Óscar Romero’s Theological Vision: Liberation and the Transfiguration of the Poor
By Edgardo Colón-Emeric (Author, HTI Mentor, HTI Steering Committee member)
Hardcover: 418 pages
Publisher: University of Notre Dame Press (October 30, 2018)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 9780268104733
ISBN-13: 978-0268104733
ASIN: 0268104735

On March 24, 1980, Archbishop Óscar Romero was assassinated as he celebrated mass in El Salvador. As the Catholic Church prepares to declare Romero a saint, Colón-Emeric explores the life and thought of Romero and his theological vision, which finds its focus in the mystery of the transfiguration.
Cuéntame:  Narrative in the Ecclesial Present
By Natalia Imperatori-Lee (Author)
Print Length: 192 pages
Publisher: ORBIS (April 24, 2018)
Language: English

From the common Spanish phrase—“cuéntame” (tell me a story)—the author tells the story of the church, rooted in the experiences and lives of Latinx Catholics in the United States. If a people is known by the stories it tells, so too is a church. Since its inception in the mid-1970s, Latino/a theology has redefined notions of personhood and relationship, culture and interculturality, as well as notions of the divine itself. However, a coherent, systematic Catholic ecclesiology has yet to be elaborated from a Latinx perspective. This book undertakes that systemization in a multidisciplinary way, drawing upon Latin American and U.S. Hispanic literature as well as theological reflection, to devise an ecclesiology shaped by narrative. In this project Imperatori-Lee analyzes a variety of narratives—fiction, history, religious rituals, demographic studies—to find viable starting points for systematizing the “story” of the Church, which is, ultimately, what ecclesiology seeks to do.
Our Catholic Children, Ministry with Hispanic Youth and Young Adults
By Hosffman Ospino
Paperback: 48 pages
Publisher: Our Sunday Visitor (July 30, 2018)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1681928655
ISBN-13: 978-1681928654

Nearly 60 percent of all Catholics younger than eighteen are Hispanic. The numbers are clear. The voices and experiences of Hispanic young people are writing a new chapter in the history of the Church in the United States. Our Catholic Children: Ministry with Hispanic Youth and Young Adults is a groundbreaking collection of essays, the result of several national conversations, bringing together the best research and analysis available to date on the most urgent realities that shape the lives of Hispanic Catholic young people.
Enfleshing Theology: Embodiment, Discipleship, and Politics in the Work of M. Shawn Copeland
By M. Shawn Copeland (Author), Michele Saracino (Editor, Introduction), Robert J. Rivera (Editor), Susan Abraham (Contributor), Katie G. Cannon (Contributor), Laurie Cassidy (Contributor), Shawnee M. Daniels-Sykes (Contributor), Deirdre Dempsey (Contributor), Christine Firer Hinze (Contributor), Roberto S. Goizueta (Contributor, HTI Mentor), Susan L. Gray (Contributor), Willie James Jennings (Contributor), Mary Ann Hinsdale IHM (Contributor), Bryan N. Massingale (Contributor), Maureen O'Connell (Contributor), Nancy Pineda-Madrid (Contributor, HTI Mentor), Stephen G. Ray Jr. (Contributor), Karen Teel (Contributor), Eboni Marshall Turman (Contributor), RSM, Kathleen Williams (Contributor)
Hardcover: 324 pages
Publisher: Fortress Academic (October 31, 2018)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1978704054
ISBN-13: 978-1978704053
Enfleshing Theology honors and engages the life work of M. Shawn Copeland, whose theology is groundbreaking and prophetic, traversing the fields of Catholic Theology, Black Theology, Womanist Thought, and Semiotics. The book opens with a brief introduction, and then moves to an interview with Copeland, which connects her theology to her life stories. The conversation with Copeland also provides a backdrop to the seventeen essays that follow, extending Copeland’s theological worldview. The contributions are divided according to the following sections: embodiment, discipleship, and politics. The essays in the section entitled "Engaging Embodiment" critically reflect on the importance of embodiment in Christian theology and contemporary culture. Following Copeland’s lead, authors in this section theorize and theologize the body, particularly (but not limited to) Black women’s bodies, as a locus theologicus that reveals, mediates, and shapes the splendor and suffering reality of human existence. The next section, entitled "Engaging Discipleship," focuses on the concrete challenges of following Jesus in today’s world. The essays included in this section reflect on Copeland’s focus on Jesus’ particularity in terms of his solidarity with and for others. Discipleship is about modeling and mentoring, so scholars in this section also comment on Copeland’s contribution to teaching and pedagogy. The last section, entitled "Engaging the Political," interrogates the political implications of the theological. It is noteworthy that there are two trajectories of the political here, one is Copeland’s development of political theology through the lens of Canadian Jesuit theologian, Bernard Lonergan. The other trajectory focuses on the work of theology in contemporary art and politics. These three sections are fluid and overlap with one another. Several of the articles on embodiment speak to questions of solidarity and a few of the essays on discipleship clearly present as political. The ways in which each of the contributions in this volume overlap with each other attests to the complex nature of doing constructive theology today, and even more how Copeland’s work is at the forefront of that multi-layered, polyvalent, intersectional theological work.


The University of Chicago
Dr. Peter Casarella (HTI Mentor, HTI Member Council member), Associate Professor of Theology and Interim Director of Latin American North American Church Concerns at University of Notre Dame, will be one of the speakers at the Political Theology: Promise and Prospects conference at The University of Chicago on November 7-9. Casarella will speak at the morning seminar Perspectives in Latin-American Theology on Friday under the theme human rights, race, and political theology. His portion of the seminar is titled Reinterpreting the Political latinamente: Communion and the Common Good.

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 16, 2018 - 12:00pm - 3:30pm
Location: Embassy Suites - Crestone B (Third Level)
(By invitation only)
HTI En Conjunto Association Members Reception
Saturday, November 17, 2018 - 8:00 PM-9:00 PM
Location:  Embassy Suites-Cripple Creek (Second Level)

Hispanic Theological Initiative Reception at AAR/SBL
Saturday, November 17, 2018 - 9:00 PM-10:30 PM
Location:  Embassy Suites-Cripple Creek (Second Level)
For HTI Family and Friends. Join us for your annual HTI Reception and gathering. We hope to see you there!
AAHHE - American Association of Hispanics in Higher Education, Inc.
14th Annual National Conference - Costa Mesa, CA
February 28 - March 2, 2019
Hilton Orange County Hotel
3040 Bristol Street, Costa Mesa, CA 92626
Click here for more information and registration.
SMU Perkins School of Theology
Latinx and the Changing Landscapes of Theological Education
Seminar for Pre-Tenured Faculty and PhD Students on March 8, 2019 at SMU Perkins School of Theology, Dallas, TX.
The Center for the Study of Latinx Christianity and Religions will award ten applications with full scholarships to attend this seminary including travel, hotel, meals and registration costs.  Recipients will be selected based on responses to the application questions and a letter of recommendation from their Dean (pre-tenured faculty) or PhD program director (students).  Application Deadline has been extended to November 15th.
“The nature, construction, and delivery of theological education is being re-imagined in light of shifting contexts as well as the complex cross-currents of unprecedented human migration, social media, and re-defined social, political, and economic understanding and policies. This seminar will explore how Latinx scholars might best understand their own vocations and offer their contributions to theological construction and transmission as they navigate changing landscapes.”
Dr. Edwin David Aponte,
Executive Director
Louisville Institute
For additional information contact


Check out ¡Excelencia
in Education! great resources

Excelencia In Education, now in its twelfth year, continues the important work of highlighting and supporting outstanding Latinx led education programs. Recently, Excelencia in Education announced its 2018 Examples of Excelencia, spotlighting four programs that have shown outstanding, evidence-based results of improving Latinx student success in higher education. At the Accelerating Latino Student Success (ALASS) gathering on October 12th, Excelencia in Education brought over 300 representatives from a broad network of national educational programs to share the best practices of the four awardees, funding institution, data collection, and evaluation and assessment experts.  Examples of Excelencia is the only national initiative recognizing and celebrating programs at the forefront of advancing educational achievement for Latinx students.  Their website contains a wealth of information on how to attract, retain, and graduate Latinx students, and potential funding resources.
Good Docs which provides social issue documentaries for your classroom, campus and community shares with HTI its newest documentary, The Pushouts.  The Pushouts follows the story of Victor Rios, a high school dropout and gang member turned college professor and thought leader, to examine crucial questions of race, class, power, and the American dream at a particularly urgent time. Woven with archival materials stretching back 25 years to Rios’ own troubled adolescence and including the contemporary story of a fateful summer in Watts, The Pushouts redefines the stories of those whom people deemed "dropouts." Contact Good Docs to preview the film.


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, click here.
Belmont University – Assistant Professor of Worship Leadership
Boston University – Assistant Professor of Theology
Brite Divinity School  –  Assistant (Associate) Professor - Black Religious Traditions
Brite Divinity School – Executive Vice President and Dean
Emory University – Candler School of Theology – Assistant Professor, New Testament
Columbia Theological Seminary – Faculty Position in New Testament
Emory University – Director of Public Theological Education
Emory University  – Contemporary Latinx Studies Cluster Hires, Department of Religion
Fuller Theological Seminary – Department of Preaching and Worship, School of Theology, Lloyd Ogilvie Professor of Preaching
Fuller Theological Seminary – Geoffrey Bromiley Professor of Church History (or Historical Theology)
Jesuit School of Theology of Santa Clara University – Assistant Professor in Christian Spirituality
Iliff School of Theology –  Assistant Professor (tenure track) New Testament and Christian Origins
Messiah College – Biblical Studies and Religious Studies Faculty
McCormick Theological Seminary – Tenure Track Assistant or Associate Professor - Hebrew Bible
Phillips Theological Seminary – President
Southern Methodist University – Perkins School of Theology – Association Director 2 (Internship Program)
St. Norbert College – Asst. Professor in Theology and Religious Studies with a specialization in Christian Ethics
St. Norbert College – Asst. Professor in Theology and Religious Studies with a Specialization in Constructive and/or Systematic Theology
Texas Christian University – Assistant Professor, History of Christianity
The University of Chicago – New Testament and Early Christian Literature
University of Dayton – Associate Director of Campus Ministry - Liturgy
Vanderbilt Divinity School – Tenure Track Faculty Position in Preaching and Worship in the African American Tradition
Wesley Theological Seminary – Tenure Track Position in New Testament
Wheaton College – Assistant Professor of New Testament
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.


The Center for Theological Inquiry

Inquiry on Religion & Global Issues:  Research Workshops in Princeton on Religion & Economic Inequality - Fall Semester 2019 - Spring Semester 2020
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.
Fall Workshop - Full-time in residence from August 18 to December 13, 2019
Spring Workshop - Full-time in residence from January 20 to May 15, 2020
Applications open September 1 and December 1, 2018.  Apply here.
The Forum for Theological Exploration (FTE)
FTE offers 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, 2019.
The Louisville Institute
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: 1/15/2019.  Apply here.
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:  11/1/2018. Apply here.
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) programs 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: 2/1/2019.  Apply here.  
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: 3/1/2019. Apply here.  
The Postdoctoral Fellowship (PostDoc) programs 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:  12/1/2018. Apply here.  
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 is 4/1/2019.  Apply here.


We offer up prayers of joy and thanksgiving for the exciting life changing events your HTI Scholars have celebrated over the summer:
Jennifer Fernández married Michael Rush on June 2, 2018 in Seattle, WA.

Stacy Guinto-Salinas celebrated her marriage to Noé Gabriel López on July 6, 2018 in Stokesdale, North Carolina.

Jorge Juan Rodríguez V married Ashley Michell Busone on August 11, 2018 in Ballston Spa, New York.

Diana Rodriguez Click and Will Click celebrated the birth of their son Abel Sebastian Rodriguez Click born on August 8th weighing 6 lbs. 7 oz.

Janan Delgado Dassum welcomed Khadija Y. Fhmy to their family on September 9, 2018 in Boston, MA.  Kahdija weighed 8 lb 5 oz.. Yair Fahmy, her father and Zayd, her brother were thrilled with her arrival.
Rodrigo de Galiza Barbosa and Grazieli de Galiza announced the birth of Boaz Martins de Galiza on October 1, 2018. Boaz weighed 5 lbs 12 oz.  Hadassa and Zipora welcomed their baby brother.
Elyssa Salinas-Lazarski and her husband Derek welcomed Frida Eileen on October 8, 2018.  Frida weighed 5 lbs 14 oz, 19 inches.

Ángel Gallardo and Kendrea Tannis Gallardo celebrated the birth of Karolia Mercedes Gallardo born on October 14, 2018. Karolia weighed 6 lb 8 oz and was 18 inches long.
The HTI office is also blessed with the support of five Princeton Seminary students during the 2018-2019 academic year:
Stephen DiTrolio
Leslie Enid Giboyeaux
Deborah Kwak
Melissa Roberts
Jonathan Rodriguez


On Tuesday, October 16thDr. Luis León (HTI Mentor) joined the Gran Nube de Testigos that surround and guide us. His sudden passing made a tremendous impact in our community, as he touched the lives of so many not only with his scholarship but also with his kind and cheerful spirit. Please keep Luis’s family and friends in your prayers through this time of grieving and loss, as well as Luis's colleagues and students at University of Denver and Iliff School of Theology. Luis joined the HTI familia in the summer of 2000, as a Post-doctoral Fellow and since then he was always present at the HTI receptions during the AAR/SBL annual meetings, always with a bright smile and a kind word. We invite you to keep Luis’s legacy alive through his two monographs, La Llorona's Children: Religion, Life, and Death in the U.S.-Mexican Borderlands and The Political Spirituality of Cesar Chavez: Crossing Religious Borders.

HTI also mourns the loss of Dr. Gail O'Day (HTI Editor), who passed away on September 22. She served as A.H. Shatford Professor of Preaching and New Testament and Associate Dean of Faculty and Academic Affairs at Candler School of Theology at Emory University, from 1987 to 2010.  She served as dean and professor of New Testament and Preaching at Wake Forest University School of Divinity. We remember Gail with profound gratitude and offer our condolences to her family.

The Rev. Dr. Katie Geneva Cannon died on August 8. Dr. Cannon will be remembered as the first black woman to be ordained in the United Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) Her work focused on the areas of Christian ethics, Womanist theology, and women in religion and society. She helped to elevate the perspective of black women and people of color in church and academy. She served as the Annie Scales Rogers Professor of Christian Ethics at Union Presbyterian Seminary.  We celebrate her life and grieve her passing with the many brothers and sisters whom she impacted.

We offer our condolences to Dr. Carmen Nanko-Fernández and her family as they mourn the passing of her brother-in-law, Robert Cardoza due to a massive stroke.  We continue praying for Carmen and for her sister Mary Louise and her two sons.


With the launching of HTI’s new 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 here. Journeys is ready widely and provides an excellent venue to promote Hispanic/Latino events and scholarship.




November 17th – November 20th, 2018 – Denver, CO
Lecture/Workshop Curriculum
(For events at the Society of Biblical Literature (SBL),  see separate listing, below)

Saturday, November 17th, 2018
La Comunidad of Hispanic Scholars of Religion & SBL's Latina/o and Latin American Biblical Interpretation Group

Theme: Fake News vs. Good News: Texts, Tweets, and Technology
Loida I. Martell, Lexington Theological Seminary, Presiding
Ahida Pilarski, Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago, Presiding
Saturday - 9:00 AM-11:30 AM
Sheraton Downtown-Colorado (I.M. Pei Tower - Third Level)
Given the current political, social, and religious environment, texts—however one defines these—and their transmission, particularly through the instant use of social media, have begun to be “elastic” in their meaning. As such, their veracity and value have begun to be questioned in new ways. The terminology of “fake news”—begun as a self-serving means to justify illicit behavior—has now entered the popular lexicon and led to the need to discern the veracity of heretofore unquestionable, or at the very least, valued source material. As we approach religious material and especially biblical texts, how do we as biblical and theological scholars provide the hermeneutical and scholarly basis for readings and transmissions of Scripture that is truly evangelion (good news) in a world faced with fake news of intolerance, hate, and violence? This session will highlight a panel of scholars who will speak to these issues from varied perspectives. Two panelists will highlight the contributions of Dr. Fernando F. Segovia’s scholarship, particularly the relevance of his critical methodologies and postcolonial analysis in the framework of such issues.

Discussion will follow, and the 2018 La Comunidad Lifetime Achievement Award will be presented to Dr. Fernando F. Segovia.
Jacqueline Hidalgo, Williams College
The Bible and Global-Systemic Criticism in the Age of Fake News
Santiago H. Slabodsky, Hofstra University
Exilic Methodologies: Fernando Segovia's Critical Contribution Beyond Disciplinary Disciplines
Corinna Guerrero, Santa Clara University
Competing Narratives, Memes, and Going Viral as Socio-Theological Reflection and Resistance for Latinx-American Communities: A Hebrew Bible Perspective
Fernando F. Segovia, Vanderbilt University
Business Meeting:
Loida I. Martell, Lexington Theological Seminary
Sammy Alfaro, Grand Canyon Theological Seminary
Saturday - 1:00 PM-3:30 PM
Hyatt Regency-Mineral F (Third Level)
Society for the Arts in Religious and Theological Studies
Theme: Theological and Religious Explorations of Borders through the Arts
Maureen O'Connell, La Salle University, Presiding
Cláudio Carvalhaes, Union Theological Seminary, Presiding
Joel Mayward, University of St Andrews
The Borders of Wakanda: Black Panther as Cinematic Parable
Helen Boursier, College of St. Scholastica
The Power of Hope: Using Arts-Based Research for Education and Advocacy
Rebecca Berru Davis, Montana State University
Rips and Seams: Immigrant Women Stitching Healing and Wholeness into Worlds of Trauma and Loss
Latina/o Religion, Culture, and Society Unit
Theme: Latinx Religion and Institutional Violence
Lauren Frances Guerra, University of California, Los Angeles, Presiding
Saturday - 1:00 PM-3:00 PM
Convention Center-Mile High 3B (Lower Level)
Edward Escalon, University of Toronto
Left Behind: The Eschatology of Police Brutality
Grace Vargas, Southern Methodist University
A Labor of Love? Cuban Views on Early 20th Century U.S. Protestant Missions to the Island
Marlene Ferreras, Claremont School of Theology
From Milpa to Maquila, Mamá to Machine: Mayan Women, Theology, and Transnational Corporations
Néstor Medina, University of Toronto
Business Meeting:
Jeremy V. Cruz, St. John's University, New York
La Comunidad of Hispanic Scholars of Religion & SBL's Latina/o and Latin American Biblical Interpretation Group

Theme: Fake News vs. Good News: Texts, Tweets, and Technology
Loida I. Martell, Lexington Theological Seminary, Presiding
Ahida Pilarski, Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago, Presiding
Saturday - 9:00 AM-11:30 AM
Sheraton Downtown-Colorado (I.M. Pei Tower - Third Level)
Given the current political, social, and religious environment, texts—however one defines these—and their transmission, particularly through the instant use of social media, have begun to be “elastic” in their meaning. As such, their veracity and value have begun to be questioned in new ways. The terminology of “fake news”—begun as a self-serving means to justify illicit behavior—has now entered the popular lexicon and led to the need to discern the veracity of heretofore unquestionable, or at the very least, valued source material. As we approach religious material and especially biblical texts, how do we as biblical and theological scholars provide the hermeneutical and scholarly basis for readings and transmissions of Scripture that is truly evangelion (good news) in a world faced with fake news of intolerance, hate, and violence? This session will highlight a panel of scholars who will speak to these issues from varied perspectives. Two panelists will highlight the contributions of Dr. Fernando F. Segovia’s scholarship, particularly the relevance of his critical methodologies and postcolonial analysis in the framework of such issues.

Discussion will follow, and the 2018 La Comunidad Lifetime Achievement Award will be presented to Dr. Fernando F. Segovia.

Jacqueline Hidalgo, Williams College
The Bible and Global-Systemic Criticism in the Age of Fake News
Santiago H. Slabodsky, Hofstra University
Exilic Methodologies: Fernando Segovia's Critical Contribution Beyond Disciplinary Disciplines
Corinna Guerrero, Santa Clara University
Competing Narratives, Memes, and Going Viral as Socio-Theological Reflection and Resistance for Latinx-American Communities: A Hebrew Bible Perspective
Fernando F. Segovia, Vanderbilt University
Business Meeting:
Loida I. Martell, Lexington Theological Seminary
Sammy Alfaro, Grand Canyon Theological Seminary
AAR A17-338
Saturday - 3:30 PM-5:00 PM
Convention Center-205 (Street Level)
Professional Practices and Institutional Location
Teaching Religion Unit
Theme: Supporting SoTL (Scholarship on Teaching and Learning)
Molly Bassett, Georgia State University, Presiding
The Teaching Religion Unit seeks to support scholars engaged in studying teaching and learning at a variety of levels. “Supporting SoTL” will focus on presenters’ own works in progress in a roundtable format. Anyone interested in learning more about SoTL, including publishing venues, is welcome to attend and participate.
Fred Glennon, Le Moyne College
The Promise and Limits of Using Case Studies to Assess Student Ability to Evaluate Moral Conduct and Make Decisions
Christopher Richmann, Baylor University
Developing Empathy through Study of Christian Heresies
Drew Baker, Claremont School of Theology
Ann Hidalgo, Claremont School of Theology
Learning to Describe the Elephant: Metadata as a Pedagogical Exercise in the Religious Studies Classroom
Kathryn Moles, Graduate Theological Union
Pedagogical Strategies for Fostering Inclusivity and Constructive Conflict in Religious Studies Classrooms
Joshua Patterson, University of Georgia
Does Religious Studies Have a Core? A National Comparison Study
Saturday - 3:30 PM-5:00 PM
Hyatt Regency-Mineral D (Third Level)
Books under Discussion Professional Practices and Institutional Location
Feminist Theory and Religious Reflection Unit
Theme: Re-Thinking the Teaching of Theories and Methods: A Discussion of Cultural Approaches to the Study of Religion (Bloomsbury, 2018) and The Bloomsbury Reader for Cultural Approaches to the Study of Religion (2018)
Mary Keller, University of Wyoming, Presiding
Innovative cultural theories used in the field of religious studies consistently remain under-represented in introductory text and course materials. This roundtable offers new strategies for revising “theory and method” courses in conversation with two new resources that are being released by Bloomsbury in Fall 2018, Cultural Approaches to Studying Religion: An Introduction to Theories and Methods and The Bloomsbury Reader in Cultural Approaches to the Study of Religion, both edited by Sarah J. Bloesch and Meredith Minister. These resources create a pathway to re-envisioning introductory theories and methods courses that is both more in touch with contemporary trends in the field of religious studies and that also reveals the intellectual histories often occluded in theories and methods courses.
Meredith Minister, Shenandoah University
Kathryn Lofton, Yale University
Richard Newton, University of Alabama
Sarah Bloesch, Elon University
Grace Vargas, Southern Methodist University
Brendan Jamal Thornton, University of North Carolina
Jessica A. Boon, University of North Carolina
Saturday - 3:30 PM-5:00 PM
Hyatt Regency-Centennial B (Third Level)
Arts, Literature, and Religion Unit
Theme: Religion, Landscape, and Art
George Pati, Valparaiso University, Presiding
This session brings together the environmental visions of artists and theologians to cultivate imaginative and possibly transformative ways of seeing and interpreting the natural world around us
Ann M. Pederson, Augustana University
Seeing Dakota: Collisions and Confluences
Timothy Parker, Norwich University
Cultural Landscapes of Religious Pluralism: Mapping the Material-Cultural Assemblages of Interreligious Encounter
Rebecca Berru Davis, Montana State University
Vulnerability, Resilience and the Sacred: Probing the World of Artist/Ranchers in the Rocky Mountain West for Their Environmental Vision
AAR A17-429
Saturday - 5:30 PM-7:00 PM
Convention Center-706 (Street Level)
Religions in the Latina/o Americas Unit
Theme: Theologies of Connection and Identity across the Latino/a/x Americas
Matthew Peter Casey, Arizona State University, Presiding
Joel Cruz, Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago
"¡Mira, pa ya en el cielo!" Postcolonial Theology and Theological Aesthetics in Edgardo Miranda-Rodriguez’s La Borinqueña
Kristian Diaz, University of Denver
On the Walls of the Cathedral: The Decline of Catholicism amongst Salvadoran Millennials
Ann Hidalgo, Claremont School of Theology
Rockin’ the Habit: Colliding Cultural Identities and a Peruvian Nuns’ Rock Band
Chris Tirres, DePaul University
"Relatedness" in the Work of Ivone Gebara
Responding: Teresa Delgado, Iona College
Hispanic Theological Initiative Reception
Saturday - 8:00 PM-10:30 PM
Embassy Suites-Cripple Creek (Second Level)
8:00 pm - 9:00 pm - HTI En Conjunto Association Members Reception
9:00 pm - 10:30 pm - HTI Reception
Sunday, November 18th, 2018
Liberation Theologies Unit
Theme: Extra, Extra! The End is Here: Apocalypsis 2018
Nikia Robert, Claremont School of Theology, Presiding
Sunday - 9:00 AM-11:30 AM
Hyatt Regency-Capitol 5 (Fourth Level)
From the tangible mortality of our planet through the resurging threats of nuclear devastation, the threat of the “end” of life as we know it colors contemporary experience. Outrage media trumpets impending cataclysm. Prophecies incite swaths radical violence. Are we living in the end times? If so, the end of what? Can or will liberation follow? The ideas of uncovering/revealing at the heart of the word “apocalypsis” call attention to the epistemological, political, and practical shifts that accompany the apocalyptic. This panel explores from theoretical reappraisals of the liberative salience of “apocalypse” as a theological category to strategic appropriations of apocalyptic rhetoric by activists. The panelists explore these possibilities in a multiplicity of approaches, contexts, and traditions intersecting gender, race, coloniality, sexuality, identity, ideology, politics, power, economics, class, rhetoric, persuasion, violence, and ecology.

Yara Gonzalez-Justiniano, Boston University
Should It End? Hope in the Apocalypse
Bryson White, Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary
Black Steel in the Hour of Chaos: The Prison Industrial Complex as Realized White Supremacist Eschatology
Andrew Stone Porter, Vanderbilt University
White Colonial Neoliberalism in Crisis: Three Apocalyptic Visions
Norah Elmagraby, Emory University
Apocalypse and Climate Change in Islam: A Study of the Virtual Climate Change Discourse
Filipe Maia, Pacific School of Religion
Toward a Theology of Liberation (Again)
Business Meeting:
Maria T. Davila, Andover Newton Theological School
Unregistered Participant
AAR A18-136
Sunday - 9:00 AM-11:30 AM
Convention Center-Mile High 3B (Lower Level)
Exploratory Sessions
Theme: Sound As Religion
Isaac Weiner, Ohio State University, Presiding
The aim of this Exploratory Session is to engage with scholars in religion, anthropology, and ethnomusicology, along with sound artists and filmmakers, who have been foregrounding sound in their studies of religion and engaging the burgeoning literature on sound studies. Presenters will speak from a sound clip, sound object, or sound image. Topics will include lament revival and vocality; dynamics of re-sounding/resonance in congregational musicking; experiences of "silence" in nature and contemplative practice; ambient music and sonic mysticism; Arvo Pärt's "Spiegel im Speigel" in End of Life Care; relationship between hearing and speaking Krishna's names and darśan practices; anarchy of punk rock sound production and performance; intersections of the aural landscape, religion, and race and ethnicity in California between the 1850s and 1880s; sound as touch: on drums and deaf churches in Uganda.
Mark Porter, Universität Erfurt
Unregistered Participant
Anandi Silva Knuppel, Emory University
Michel Sunhae Lee, University of Texas
Francis Stewart, Bishop Grosseteste University
Timothy Gallati, Harvard University
Tyler Zoanni, New York University
Unregistered Participant
Rosalind I. J. Hackett, University of Tennessee
Sunday - 9:00 AM-12:00 PM
Hilton City Center-Mattie Silks (Lower Level 1)
Lutheran Scholars of Religion
Theme: Keeping It Real: A Global Take on Theology for the Common Good
Christine Helmer, Northwestern University, Presiding
Theologians working with resources from Lutheran traditions address current questions of climatological, cultural, economic, and political urgency, with a particular focus on poverty and immigration. The papers will explore theological, philosophical, ethical, and political concerns in order to propose realist theological positions that envision and promote the common good in church and world.
Anthony M. Bateza, St. Olaf College
Constructing the Unruly Mob: Theological and Philosophical Fears that the Common are up to No Good
Friederike Nüssel, Heidelberg University
Social Cohesion and the Common Good: How a Lutheran Realism can Contribute to Public Debate
Leopoldo Sanchez, Concordia Seminary
Is it Time for Another SOLA?: A Latino Immigrant Reading of Luther’s Heidelberg Disputation and Lectures on Genesis as a Lens for Dealing with Migrants Today
Petri Merenlahti, Evangelical Lutheran Church of Finland
Disillusioned Yet Hopeful: What Makes for a Balanced Public Faith?
Carl Hughes, Texas Lutheran University
Kristine Suna-Koro, Xavier University
Sunday - 11:30 AM-1:00 PM
Convention Center-201 (Street Level)
Wabash Center for Teaching and Learning in Theology and Religion
Theme: Identity in the Classroom
Diversity in the classroom is often presented as a challenge for educators, but what if we consider the multiple identities of ourselves and those of our students as assets? Join us for lunch and conversation about how this perspective can reorient our teaching.
Lunch will be served. Space is limited to 50 participants. Registration is required; send an email to Beth Reffett at to sign up before the deadline of November 1. For additional information go to
Eric D. Barreto, Princeton Theological Seminary
Rebekka King, Middle Tennessee State University
Books under Discussion
Religions in the Latina/o Americas Unit
Theme: Authors Meet Readers: Socorro Castañeda-Liles’ Our Lady of Everyday Life (Oxford University Press, 2018) and Laura Perez’s Eros Ideologies (Duke University Press, 2018)
Sunday - 3:30 PM-5:00 PM
Convention Center-105 (Street Level)
This panel explores the role of faith, devotion, sexuality, spirituality and art in our current time of political and spiritual crisis. Castañeda-Liles's Our Lady of Everyday Life: Contextualizing Narratives on Everyday Faith, Devotion, and Existence Across Generations of U.S. Mexican Women (Oxford, 2018) offers a nuanced understanding of religion among college women, mothers, and older women. The book is a rare study into the ways Mexican-origin women are socialized into Catholicism as children and how women negotiate this religiosity at intersection of race, class, gender, sexuality, and religion. Perez's Eros Ideologies: Writings on Art, Spirituality, and the Decolonial (Duke, 2018) explores the possibilities for individual and social shifts beyond either-or binaries and us vs. them mentalities that are ultimately dehumanizing for all. The book argues for a decolonial mode of thinking and practice that takes seriously non-western understandings of the interdependent nature of all life forms.
Socorro Castañeda, San Jose, CA
Laura Perez, University of California, Berkeley
Jessica Delgado, Princeton University
Elaine Padilla, University of La Verne
Religious Education Association
Theme: Moving Pragmatically beyond White Normativity in Teaching and Learning
Carmichael Crutchfield, Memphis Theological Seminary, Presiding
Sunday - 6:30 PM-8:00 PM
Sheraton Downtown-Capitol (I.M. Pei Tower - Terrace Level - 1 level below Lobby)
Recent events such as white supremacist rallies in the United States, or the push for a wall between Mexico and the United States, calls to close national borders to economic and political refugees, and the rise of nationalist candidates in European elections point to the intractable problems of white normativity, white privilege, and intolerance of “the other”.

This session intends to explore pedagogies that help us to move at least somewhat beyond that stance by creating brave spaces for learning and change. We will use an interactive fishbowl process to explore the syllabi of six educators from diverse parts of the religion academy. The second half of the session will engage session attendees through a structured form of interaction.

This session is an opportunity to connect with the Religious Education Association, a related scholarly organization of the AAR. We value interdisciplinary and intercultural research at the intersections of religion and education (see

Eric D. Barreto, Princeton Theological Seminary
Mara Brecht, St. Norbert College, University of Toronto
Rachelle Green, Emory University
Jeremy Posadas, Austin College
Shively T.J. Smith, Boston University
Katherine Turpin, Iliff School of Theology
Monday, November 20th, 2018
History of Christianity Unit
Theme: The Medellin Conference and Latin American Christianity
Unregistered Participant, Presiding
Monday - 1:00 PM-3:00 PM
Convention Center-Mile High 1B (Lower Level)
Latin American Christianity comprises an important chapter in the History of global Christianity. One of the primary motives of this significance relates the Latin American spearheaded theological renewal that was summarized as “Theology of Liberation.” The Second Conference of the Latin American Bishops Council celebrated in Medellin, Colombia, in 1968, is one of the most notable historical events that speak to this renewal. This event brought to light years of pastoral reflection and socio-religious mobilization that ultimately changed the way of being church and doing theology in Latin America. Even though Medellin was a Catholic event, it opened the doors for a more serious ecumenical approach and a new understanding of how to live the Christian faith in the Latin American reality. In recalling the fiftieth anniversary of Medellin, this panel addresses the theological and historical significance of this event for the history of Latin American and World Christianity.

Ernesto Fiocchetto, Florida International University
Catholic Tensions in the Argentinian Society Exposed by the Lives and Deaths of Three Bishops of Medellin
Sandra Londono-Ardila, Florida International University
The Socio-Religious Mobilization of the Latin American Laity in the Period 1960-1973 and the Theological Renewal of Medellin
Philip Wingeier-Rayo, Austin Theological Seminary
Medellin between Two Revolutions: The Impact of CELAM II on Cuba and Nicaragua
Raimundo Barreto, Princeton Theological Seminary
Medellin (1968) from a Latin American Protestant Perspective
Religions in the Latina/o Americas Unit
Theme: Indigenous Cosmologies, Past and Present
Daisy Vargas, University of California, Riverside, Presiding
Monday - 1:00 PM-3:00 PM
Convention Center-502 (Street Level)
Indigenous Cosmologies, Past and Present

Josefrayn Sanchez-Perry, University of Texas
Intersecting Religions: Mesoamerican Christianity in the Codex Mexicanus
Jennifer Scheper Hughes, University of California, Riverside
Contagion and the Sacred in Mexico: Indigenous Responses to Epidemic Cataclysm in the Sixteenth Century
Cecilia Titizano, Graduate Theological Union
Subversive Spirituality: Ancestral Cosmologies and Indigenous Feminism
Unregistered Participant
Business Meeting:
Chris Tirres, DePaul University
Jessica Delgado, Princeton University
Monday - 3:30 PM-5:00 PM
Hyatt Regency-Capitol 3 (Fourth Level)
Native Traditions in the Americas Unit
Theme: Settler Insensibilities and Threats to Indigenous Sacred Lands
Michelene Pesantubbee, University of Iowa, Presiding
These papers address the colonial forces disrupting indigenous relations with sacred lands. "Canada's Proposed Impact Assessment Act and Indigenous Religious Freedom" considers the proposed restructuring of the environmental assessment process and the legacy of ignoring indigenous concerns of the impact on sacred lands that are also federal reserve lands. "Decolonial Visions: Sacred Indigenous Land and the Politics of Land Art in the American Southwest" critiques the Land Art Movement's reshaping (and desecration) of indigenous sacred spaces in the Southwest through what artists consider a re-presenting of the sacred in the natural world. "The Land is Our Health; Indigenous Youth, Canadian Resource Extraction, and the Pursuit of Reconciliation and Reconnection to 'Taashikaywin'" examines how politically supported resource extraction is part of a colonial force disrupting place-based reconciliation. This session concludes with our business meeting.
Nicholas Shrubsole, University of Central Florida
Canada’s Proposed Impact Assessment Act and Indigenous Religious Freedom
Deanna Zantingh, Sandy-Saulteaux Spiritual Centre
The Land is Our Health: Indigenous Youth, Canadian Resource Extraction, and the Pursuit of Reconciliation as Reconnection to Taashikaywin
Yohana Junker, Graduate Theological Union
Decolonial Visions: Sacred Indigenous Land and the Politics of Land Art in the American Southwest
Mary Churchill, Sonoma State University
Business Meeting:
Suzanne J. Crawford O'Brien, Pacific Lutheran University
Monday - 5:30 PM-7:00 PM
Convention Center-605 (Street Level)
Presidential Theme: Religious Studies in Public
Ethics Unit
Theme: Religious Ethics, Diverse Publics, and Social Engagement
Melanie Jones, Chicago Theological Seminary, Presiding
These papers re-imagine the purposes and tasks of intellectual/academic life and broader social engagement. Increasingly, there are persons working in various sectors beyond traditional academic tracks whose work creates knowledge and greater insights into social practices. This conversation includes independent scholars, cultural workers, and university scholars to help broaden the academy’s understanding of the many publics that need to be engaged.
Florian Höhne, Humboldt University
Between "Nasty Talk" and "Fake News": Public Theology and the Digital Transformation of Its Public
Stephanie Thurston, Princeton Theological Seminary
The Ethnographic Turn, Public Anthropology, and the Civic Responsibilities of Scholars
Christopher Medland, University of Edinburgh
"Mum called it Sin City": Faith-Rooted Organizing, Place, and the Sacred in Edinburgh
Chelsea Carskaddon, Merrillville, IN
A Religious Scholar in the Nonprofit World
History of Christianity Unit
Theme: Traversing Theology: Social Theory and Religious Thought in Community
Daniel Ramirez, Claremont Graduate University, Presiding
Monday - 5:30 PM-7:00 PM
Convention Center-405 (Street Level)

Racha Kirakosian, Harvard University
The 13th-Century Premonstratensian Christina of Hane: “Just Another Crazy Nun” or "Original Mystical Theology"?
Klaus Yoder, Harvard University
Prison Theology: Reading Boethius and Thomas More in the Age of Mass Incarceration
G. Simon R. Watson, Emmanuel College, University of Toronto
Charles Darwin, Asa Gray, and Aubrey Moore: A Natural History of the Golden Rule and the Possibility of Discerning Human Purpose from an Evolving Nature
David Kirkpatrick, James Madison University
Crossing Boundaries: Intellectual Exchange in Latin American Social Christianities
Constance Furey, Indiana University
Monday - 5:30 PM-7:00 PM
Pentecostal–Charismatic Movements Unit
Theme: Trauma, Transformation, and Peacemaking in Pentecostal-Charismatic Communities
Andrea Johnson, California State University, Dominguez Hills, Presiding

Convention Center-705 (Street Level)
Trauma, Transformation, and Peacemaking in Pentecostal-Charismatic Communities

Daniela C. Augustine, Lee University
Toward a Hagiography of a Living Pentecostal Community: Pneumatological Reflections on Pentecostals’ Peacebuilding in East Slavonia during the 1990s Balkan War
Leah Sarat, Arizona State University
The Word is Not Imprisoned: Trauma and Transformation in an Immigrant Detention Facility
Néstor Medina, University of Toronto


November 17th – November 20th, 2017 – Denver, CO
Lecture/Workshop Curriculum
(For events at the American Academy of Religion-AAR,  see separate listing, above)

La Comunidad of Hispanic Scholars of Religion & SBL's Latina/o and Latin American Biblical Interpretation Group

Theme: Fake News vs. Good News: Texts, Tweets, and Technology
Loida I. Martell, Lexington Theological Seminary, Presiding
Ahida Pilarski, Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago, Presiding
Saturday - 9:00 AM-11:30 AM
Sheraton Downtown-Colorado (I.M. Pei Tower - Third Level)
Given the current political, social, and religious environment, texts—however one defines these—and their transmission, particularly through the instant use of social media, have begun to be “elastic” in their meaning. As such, their veracity and value have begun to be questioned in new ways. The terminology of “fake news”—begun as a self-serving means to justify illicit behavior—has now entered the popular lexicon and led to the need to discern the veracity of heretofore unquestionable, or at the very least, valued source material. As we approach religious material and especially biblical texts, how do we as biblical and theological scholars provide the hermeneutical and scholarly basis for readings and transmissions of Scripture that is truly evangelion (good news) in a world faced with fake news of intolerance, hate, and violence? This session will highlight a panel of scholars who will speak to these issues from varied perspectives. Two panelists will highlight the contributions of Dr. Fernando F. Segovia’s scholarship, particularly the relevance of his critical methodologies and postcolonial analysis in the framework of such issues.

Discussion will follow, and the 2018 La Comunidad Lifetime Achievement Award will be presented to Dr. Fernando F. Segovia.

Jacqueline Hidalgo, Williams College
The Bible and Global-Systemic Criticism in the Age of Fake News
Santiago H. Slabodsky, Hofstra University
Exilic Methodologies: Fernando Segovia's Critical Contribution Beyond Disciplinary Disciplines
Corinna Guerrero, Santa Clara University
Competing Narratives, Memes, and Going Viral as Socio-Theological Reflection and Resistance for Latinx-American Communities: A Hebrew Bible Perspective
Fernando F. Segovia, Vanderbilt University
Business Meeting:
Loida I. Martell, Lexington Theological Seminary
Sammy Alfaro, Grand Canyon Theological Seminary
Contextual Biblical Interpretation; Latino/a and Latin American Biblical Interpretation
Joint Session With: Contextual Biblical Interpretation, Latino/a and Latin American Biblical Interpretation
Saturday - 1:00 PM to 3:30 PM
Room: 711 (Street Level) - Convention Center (CC)
Theme: Perspectives on Revelation: Womanist, Feminist, Latino/a, and South African

Laura Torgerson, Graduate Theological Union, Presiding
Jeremy Punt, Universiteit van Stellenbosch - University of Stellenbosch
Revelation, Economics, and Sex: Contextual Biblical Interpretation and Sex-Work in South Africa (20 min)
Discussion (10 min)
Roberto Mata, Santa Clara University
And I Saw Googleville Descend from Heaven: Reading Revelation 21 in Silicon Valley (20 min)
Discussion (10 min)
Angela Parker, The Seattle School of Theology & Psychology and Karri Whipple, Drew University
Unveiling Identity: A Womanist/Feminist Dialogue on the Women of Revelation (40 min)
Discussion (20 min)
Discussion (30 min)
Hispanic Theological Initiative Reception
Saturday - 8:00 PM-10:30 PM
Embassy Suites-Cripple Creek (Second Level)
8:00 pm - 9:00 pm - HTI En Conjunto Association Members Reception
9:00 pm - 10:30 pm - HTI Reception
Latino/a and Latin American Biblical Interpretation
9:00 AM to 10:30 AM
Room: Mineral Hall E (Third Level) - Hyatt Regency (HR)
Theme: Book Review Panel of Julian Gonzalez Holguin's Cain, Abel, and the Politics of God: An Agambenian Reading of Genesis 4:1-16

Gilberto Ruiz, Saint Anselm College, Presiding
Ahida Pilarski, Saint Anselm College, Panelist
Santiago H. Slabodsky, Hofstra University, Panelist
Jonathan Pimentel, Universidad Nacional de Costa Rica, Panelist
Julian Gonzalez, Church Divinity School of the Pacific, Respondent
Minoritized Criticism and Biblical Interpretation; Racism, Pedagogy and Biblical Studies
Joint Session With: Minoritized Criticism and Biblical Interpretation, Racism, Pedagogy and Biblical Studies
Saturday - 9:00 AM to 11:30 AM
Room: 711 (Street Level) - Convention Center (CC)
Theme: Tyrannical Regimes and the Bible

Jin Young Choi, Colgate Rochester Crozer Divinity School, Presiding (5 min)
Monica Melanchthon, University of Divinity
Intersections: Reading Caste, Gender, and Sexual Tyranny in the Jephthah Narrative (20 min)
Safwat Marzouk, Anabaptist Mennonite Biblical Seminary
The Emergence and the Resistance of Tyranny and the Politics of Fear in Exodus 1–2 (20 min)
Sonia Wong, Chinese University of Hong Kong
The Umbrella Movement and the Bible (20 min)
Luis Menéndez-Antuña, California Lutheran University
The Colonies Strike Back: How Latin-American Liberation Theologies Saved Christianity in Post-dictatorial Spain (20 min)
Discussion (45 min)
SBL S18-141
Saturday - 9:00 AM to 11:30 AM
Room: 207 (Street Level) - Convention Center (CC)
Novum Testamentum Graecum: Editio Critica Maior
Tommy Wasserman, Örebro School of Theology, Presiding
Juan Hernandez Jr., Bethel University (Minnesota)
A New English Translation of Josef Schmid's Studien zur Geschichte des Griechischen Apokalypse-Textes: Die Alten Stämme (20 min)
Darius Müller, Protestant University Wuppertal/Bethel
The Editio Critica Maior of Revelation: New Developments, Retrospects, and Prospects (20 min)
H.A.G. Houghton, University of Birmingham
Catena Manuscripts and the Textual Tradition of the Pauline Epistles (20 min)
Theodora Panella, Westfälische Wilhelms-Universität Münster
Do Galatians Feel Comfortable in between the Lines of the Catena Manuscripts? (20 min)
W. Andrew Smith, Shepherds Theological Seminary
Moving Forward on the Pastoral Epistles ECM (20 min)
Ekaterini Tsalampouni, Aristotle University of Thessaloniki
Thessalonians Read 1 Thessalonians: A Preliminary Report of the Byzantine Project (20 min)
Business Meeting (30 min)
Minoritized Criticism and Biblical Interpretation; Racism, Pedagogy and Biblical Studies
Joint Session With: Minoritized Criticism and Biblical Interpretation, Racism, Pedagogy and Biblical Studies
Saturday - 1:00 PM to 3:30 PM
Room: 404 (Street Level) - Convention Center (CC)
Theme: An Activist Approach to Teaching the Bible

Gregory Cuéllar, Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary, Presiding (5 min)
Jacqueline Hidalgo, Williams College, Panelist (15 min)
Jione Havea, Independent Scholar, Panelist (15 min)
Melanie A. Duguid-May, Colgate Rochester Crozer Divinity School, Panelist (15 min)
Eric Thomas, Drew University, Panelist (15 min)
Horacio Vela, University of the Incarnate Word, Panelist (15 min)
Mai-Anh Le Tran, Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary, Panelist (15 min)
Paul Myhre, Wabash College, Respondent (15 min)
Discussion (40 min)
Asian and Asian-American Hermeneutics
Joint Session With: Asian and Asian-American Hermeneutics, Feminist Hermeneutics of the Bible, Latino/a and Latin American Biblical Interpretation, Racism, Pedagogy and Biblical Studies, Contextual Biblical Interpretation, African-American Biblical Hermeneutics, Postcolonial Studies and Biblical Studies, Paul and Politics, Minoritized Criticism and Biblical Interpretation, Reading, Theory, and the Bible, Rhetoric and the New Testament
4:00 PM to 6:30 PM
Room: 404 (Street Level) - Convention Center (CC)
Theme: Decentering Biblical Scholarship Thirty Years Later: Critical Reflections on the Call of Elisabeth Schüssler Fiorenza

Fernando Segovia, Vanderbilt University, Presiding (5 min)
Efrain Agosto, New York Theological Seminary, Panelist (15 min)
Richard Horsley, University of Massachusetts Boston, Panelist (15 min)
Renate Jost, Augustana-Hochschule, Panelist (15 min)
Adele Reinhartz, Université d'Ottawa - University of Ottawa, Panelist (15 min)
Elaine Wainwright, University of Auckland, Panelist (15 min)
Vincent Wimbush, Panelist (15 min)
Elisabeth Schüssler Fiorenza, Harvard University, Respondent (15 min)
Discussion (40 min)
SBL S18-330
Saturday - 4:00 PM to 6:30 PM
Room: Centennial Ballroom H (Third Level) - Hyatt Regency (HR)
John's Apocalypse and Cultural Contexts Ancient and Modern
Theme: David Aune’s Revelation Commentary, 20 Years On
Leslie Baynes, Missouri State University, Presiding (5 min)
Adela Collins, Yale University
The Importance of Source Criticism and Composition Criticism in the Interpretation of Revelation (15 min)
Craig Koester, Luther Seminary
Treatments of the Greco-Roman World in Commentaries on John’s Apocalypse (15 min)
Ian Boxall, Catholic University of America
The Place of Reception History in Commentaries on John's Apocalypse (15 min)
Juan Hernandez, Bethel University (Minnesota)
The Textual Criticism of John's Apocalypse in the Modern Commentary Tradition (15 min)
Steven Friesen, University of Texas at Austin
Commentation: Gender, Race, and Religion in the Economy of Words (15 min)
David Aune, University of Notre Dame, Respondent (15 min)
Panelist Discussion
Discussion (20 min)
Open Discussion
Discussion (35 min)
Politics and Pedagogy
Saturday - 4:00 PM to 6:00 PM
Room: 601 (Street Level) - Convention Center (CC)
Theme: Hosted by the Student Advisory Board
At the 2017 SBL Annual Meeting scholars gathered to collaborate on pedagogical strategies and syllabi responsive to contemporary political and social climates. Academics at every career stage began a conversation that has continued in various forums about constructing courses attending to interwoven issues such as immigration, exile, social injustice, racism, gender and sexual oppression, and ecological crisis. Graduate students and early career scholars have a unique set of considerations regarding teaching courses on these subjects. On the one hand, being able to teach these courses may enhance their marketability. On the other hand, faculty without the protection of tenure are more vulnerable if student discussions become inflamed or if they are targeted by “outsiders” policing higher ed. Still more, graduate students and early career women or scholars of color experience acute pressures to teach and challenges in teaching such courses. The SBL Student Advisory board, in collaboration with this Wabash-funded workshop “Politics, Pedagogy, and the Profession,” aims at broadening the implications of this important pedagogical initiative through fostering a frank and open discussion about the challenges and opportunities of, as well as the best strategies to prepare for, teaching courses responsive to these critical and complex issues.

Erin Walsh, Duke University, Presiding (5 min)
Sarah Porter, Harvard University, Presiding (5 min)
Sharon Jacob, Pacific School of Religion, Panelist (15 min)
Peter Mena, University of San Diego, Panelist (15 min)
Richard Newton, University of Alabama, Panelist (15 min)
Maria Doerfler, Yale University, Panelist (15 min)
Roberto Mata, Santa Clara University, Panelist (15 min)
Discussion (35 min)
Tuesday, November 20, 2018
Ancient Fiction and Early Christian and Jewish Narrative
Tuesday - 9:00 AM to 11:30 AM
Room: Granite AB (Third Level) - Hyatt Regency (HR)
Theme: Early Christian Fiction

Peter Mena, University of San Diego, Presiding
Timothy P. Hein, University of Edinburgh
Birth Pains: What Can (Re)Producing Jesus' Birth Narrative (Re)Produce? (30 min)
Jenna C. Kokot, Boston College
Fires, Lions, and Trials: The Danielic Court-Tales and the Structure of the Acts of Thecla (30 min)
Matthew Wade Ferguson, University of California-Irvine
Staging Bíos: A Diegetic and Mimetic Analysis of Speech in the Gospels within the Biographical Tradition (30 min)
Maria Sturesson, Lunds Universitet
The White Robe: Angels, Appearances, and Resurrection Speech in Gospel Narrative (30 min)
Business Meeting (30 min)
Wabash Center Activities at 2018 AAR & SBL Annual Meetings

Teaching and Traumatic Events
Friday 12:00 PM to 5:00 PM
Convention Center – 201 (Street Level)
Space is limited to 40 participants. Send an email to Beth Reffett, Registration deadline is October 15.
Teaching Against Islamophobia
Friday 1:30 PM to 6:30 PM
The Hyatt Regency
Granite Room – (Third Level)
Follow-up gathering for participants in the “Teaching Against islamophobia” workshop, co-sponsored with the AAR.
Faculty of Color Luncheon
Saturday 11:30 AM to 1:00 PM
Convention Center – 201 (Street Level)
This mealtime gathering is a space for fellowship, mutual support, and empowerment for our teaching lives.  Pre-registration is required.  Send an email to Beth Reffett Registration deadline is November 1. Walk-ins may also be accepted if space is available.
Transferable Course Design
Saturday 2:00 PM to 3:30 PM
Convention Center – 201 (Street Level)
This session is designed for individuals in contingent faculty positions.
Contingent faculty (those teaching part-time or working full-time on a contract basis) are often called upon to teach multiple courses at short notice. Can course design empower preparation for a specific course, while also creating learning experiences transferable to other courses? Join leaders P. Kimberleigh Jordan (Drew Theological School) and Hussein Rashid (Barnard College) for refreshments and conversation about how one might pursue both goals with integrity.
Pre-registration is required. Space is limited to 50 participants.  Send an email to Beth Reffett,, to sign up. Registration deadline is November 1.
Reunion Dinner: Teaching Seminars for Doctoral Students
Saturday 5:00 PM to 6:30 PM
Convention Center – 201 (Street Level)
Buffet Dinner for Participants in 2016, 2017 & 2018 Wabash Teaching Seminars for Doctoral Students
(Chicago, Dallas, NYC & Boston)
Wabash Center Reception
Saturday 8:00 PM to 10:00 PM
Sheraton Downtown, I.M. Pei Tower
Second Level –  Grand  Ballroom 1
Come join us for drinks and dessert as we celebrate our work with faculty in religious studies departments and theological schools.
Identity in the Classroom
Sunday 11:30 AM to 1:00 PM
Convention Center – 201 (Street Level)
This session is designed for doctoral students in theological and religious studies.
Diversity in the classroom is often presented as a challenge for educators, but what if we consider the multiple identities of our selves and those of our students as assets? Join Eric Barreto (2008-2009 HTI Dissertation-Year Scholar, 2018-2019 HTI Steering Committee Member) (Princeton Theological Seminary) and Rebekka King (Middle Tennessee State) for lunch and conversation about how this perspective can reorient our teaching.
We will begin with a buffet lunch at 11:30 am and conclude at 1:00 pm. Pre-registration is required.
Space is limited to 50 participants. Send an email to Beth Reffett,, to sign up.
Registration deadline is November 1.
Grant Design Conversations
Sunday 2:30 PM to 5:00 PM
Convention Center – 201 (Street Level)
Do you have a grant idea for a project on teaching and learning? Have you ever thought about applying for a Wabash Center grant?  Email Beth Reffett ( to schedule a time to meet with us.
Grant Design Conversations
Monday 9:00 AM to 11:30 AM
Convention Center – 201 (Street Level)
Do you have a grant idea for a project on teaching and learning? Have you ever thought about applying for a Wabash Center grant?  Email Beth Reffett ( to schedule a time to meet with us.

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