Professor of Social Ethics and Latino/a Studies
- B.A., Florida International University
- M.P.A., American University
- M.Div., Southern Baptist Theological Seminary
- M.A., Temple University
- Ph.D., Temple University
Miguel A. De La Torre is the Iliff professor of social ethics and Latino/a studies. The focus of his academic pursuit has been social and political ethics within contemporary U.S. thought, specifically how religion affects race, class, and gender oppression. He specializes in applying a postmodern/postcolonial social theoretical approach to U.S. marginalized spaces to construct a theological and biblical ethics that challenges structures of oppression. This liberationist approach to ethical thought from the periphery provides a unique perspective to the normative discourse.
De La Torre joined the Iliff faculty in 2005 after teaching at Hope College in Holland, Michigan for five years. An ordained Southern Baptist minister, he served as pastor for Goshen Baptist Church in Glenn Dean, Kentucky. He is the author of Genesis: A Theological Commentary on the Bible (WJK, 2012); The Quest for the Historical Satan (co-authored, 2011); Liberating Jonah: Toward a Biblical Ethics of Reconciliation (Orbis Books, 2007); Lily Among the Thorns: Imagining a New Christian Sexuality (Jossey-Bass, 2007); Leer la Biblia desde los Marginados (Ediciones Messajero, 2005); Doing Christian Ethics from the Margins (Orbis Books, 2004); Santeria: The Beliefs and Rituals of a Growing Religion in America (B. Eerdmans Publishing, 2004); La Lucha for Cuba: Religion and Politics on the Streets of Miami (University of California Press, 2003); The Quest for the Cuban Christ: A Historical Search (University Press of Florida, 2002); Reading the Bible from the Margins (Orbis Books, 2002); Introducing Latino/a Theologies (co-authored, Orbis Books, 2001). He is also the editor of Out of the Shadows and Into the Light (TBA, 2009); Seeking Liberation within World Religions (Baylor University Press, 2008); Rethinking Latino/a Religion and Ethnicity (co-edited, Pilgrim Press, 2006); Handbook on Latina/o Theologies (co-edited, Chalice Press, 2006); AAR Career Guide for Racial and Ethnic Minorities in the Profession (AAR, 2006); Handbook on U.S. Theologies of Liberation (Chalice Press, 2004). His latest book, _Latina/o Social Ethics: Moving Beyond Eurocentric Moral Thinking,_is being published by Baylor University Press, 2010).
De La Torre has also edited the Encyclopedia on Hispanic American Religious Culture, a 2-volume set (ABC-CLIO, 2009), is the series editor for the 12-volume Latino/a Religious Thought for the New Millennium (Baylor University Press), and is on the advisory board of Religous Perspectie on Contemporary Ethical Issues (Rowan & Littlefield Publishers).
In addition, he has published numerous chapters for edited books, articles for scholarly journals, entries for dictionaries and encyclopedias, and op-eds for newspapers and news-journals.
De La Torre’s latest publication (June 2011) is a bi-lingual pastoral book titled “A La Familia: A Conversation About Our Families, the Bible, Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity.” It was written for Hispanic Christian families looking for biblical responses to deal with family members who come out. The book is rooted in the Latina/o experience through real life testimonies. Thanks to the Human Rights Campaign, the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force, and Unid@s, it is free to download.
De La Torre was appointed to the board of the directors of the Religious Institute in 2014. He was elected president of the Society of Christian Ethics in 2012, the first hispanic to be elected to this post. He has also served on the editorial board for the Society’s Journal of Religious Ethics, and visiting co-editor of Perspectivas: Occasional Papers published by the Hispanic Theological Initiative. Presently he is the co-chair for the Ethics Section of the American Academy of Religion. Additionally he has served on the board of directors in organizations such as: Lakeshore Habitat for Humanity; Tulipanes Latino Art and Film Festival; West Michigan Strategic Alliance, and former vice-president of Latin Americans United for Progress.
In June 2011, De La Torre received a Fulbright Specialists Scholarship from the J. William Fulbright Foreign Scholarship Board (FSB), the Bureau of Education and Cultural Affairs of the Department of State (ECA), and the Council for International Exchange of Scholars (CIES). His scholarship is for a five year term in the discipline of religion.
In the News
- ABC News - June 12, 2013
NC Protests Split on Bible’s Message to Help Poor, De La Torre Interviewed
Miguel De La Torre, professor of social ethics is interview for an article by Chris Kardish, Associated Press.
Over the last two months, hundreds of protesters have walked out of North Carolina’s capitol in handcuffs to show their opposition to policies by the GOP-controlled Legislature.
While a broader coalition of supporters is building around the “Moral Mondays” started by the state chapter of the NAACP, the inspiration behind the protests is a throwback to the biblical message of civil rights leaders fighting segregation in the Jim Crow era.
- Al Jazeera - March 15, 2013
Pope Francis: A symbol of change? Miguel De La Torre Interview, Al Jazeera
Inside Story Americans interview. We examine the political, cultural and religious impact of the Latin American pope’s ordination on the region.
Joining Inside Story Americas, with presenter Shihab Rattansi, are guests: Ivan Petrella, an Argentine social theorist; Miguel de la Torre, a religion professor at the Iliff School of Theology; and Sister Mary Ellen Lacy one of the “Nuns on the Bus” who tr
- Lehigh Valley Live.com - February 07, 2012
Dead chicken found in Tewksbury Township believed to be part of Santeria ritual
Miguel De La Torre speaks about Santeria rituals in connection with the finding of a dead chicken in a box with candles and fruit. The Santeria religion blends West African roots with several different beliefs, including those of medieval Roman Catholicism.
- Real Clear Religion - October 31, 2011
Barack Obama Is Not the Devil, Really
Emily Manual, Religion Dispatches, spoke recently with Miguel De La Torre about his book, The Quest For the Historical Satan, he co-authored with Albert Hernandez, and about the disastrous legacy the idea of Satan has bequeathed to Christianity, the dark side of God, and about the persistence of that Obama-as-Antichrist campaign.
- Viva Colorado - June 30, 2011
Latino theologian proposes new dialogue about secual orientation and identity
Dr. Miguel de la Torre, professor of social ethics and Latino/a studies at Iliff School of Theology, is the co-author of A La Familia: A Conversation About Our Families, the Bible, Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity, a 126-page book addressing the challenges Lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) people often face in Latino/a families and churches.
- UMNS United Methodist News Service Report - June 14, 2011
Lewd tweets offer lessons on sexual ethics
An elected leader’s adultery for that reason should be a matter of national concern, said the Rev. Miguel A. De La Torre, a professor of social ethics at United Methodist-related Iliff School of Theology. De La Torre and others who study these issues used the term “adultery” when discussing Weiner’s (Rep. Anthony D. Weiner, D-N.Y.) behavior. They said adultery is not defined strictly as a physical act.
- The Orlando Sentinel - May 21, 2011
The world will end today - or it won’t
De La Torre is quoted in an article by Jeff Kunerth. “We can laugh at it or dismiss it or believe it, but there is a danger to this,” said Miguel De La Torre, professor of social ethics at the Iliff School of Theology in Denver. “How many people have disposed of all their possessions, quit their jobs they can’t afford to quit or sent in their money to spend on more billboards to spread the message? It should not be taken lightly.”
- General Board of Church & Society of the United Methodist Church - May 20, 2011
On Judgment Day being May 21
Prof. Miguel De La Torre was quoted in response to the national proclamation that May 21, 2011 was Judgment Day.
- CBS Denver - 4 - May 18, 2011
De La Torre Interviewed About Judgment Day Billboards
De La Torre is interviewed (evening broadcast) about the Judgment Day May 21 predictions by Family Radio’s Harold Camping, originally from Boulder.
- EthicDaily.com - March 21, 2011
Methodist Foundation Funds Immigration Documentary
Miguel De La Torre is interviewed in a documentary on immigration funded by the United Methodist Foundation of Arkansas.
- San Diego Red - February 25, 2011
Escritor propone una nueva ética hispana basada en la acción comunitaria
Another article on Professor De La Torre’s work – but in Spanish
- Institute of Religion & Democracy - February 24, 2011
UM Stance on War a “Hodgepodge of Disciplines”
The United Methodist Church, unlike the “peace church” traditions that adhere to a strict pacifist ideology, has for most of its history allowed room for consciences of individuals…
- UM Portal - February 04, 2011
Do No Harm: UMs tackle sexual ethics questions
by Mary Jacobs
HOUSTON – “Sex is great,” proclaimed Miguel De La Torre. Raising his arms like a conductor, he led the people in the pews as they enthusiastically repeated, in unison: “Sex is great! …
- Choice - Current Reviews for Academic Libraries - January 01, 2011
Prof. Miguel De La Torre Edited Book an ALA Outstanding Academic Title
Choice Review Online (the American Library Association’s book review journal) lists the Hispanic American Religious Cultures edited by Miguel De La Torre – as a 2010 Outstanding Academic Title.
- Statesman.com - August 16, 2010
Package with cow tongue puts kink in morning trains
Miguel De La Torre, author of the book “Santería: The Beliefs and Rituals of a Growing Religion in America,” cautioned that whoever put together the package might not be a practitioner of Santería.
- Chicago Breaking News-Tribune - July 23, 2010
Cardinal George arrives in Cuba
By Manya Brachear. De La Torre said Chicago’s Cardinal Francis George’s 24-hour pastoral visit could carry long-term significance.
- Peter Lavelle's CrossTalk - July 16, 2010
Cross-Talk on Cuba: Cuba Libre
English-language international television interview based in Moscow, Russia. On this edition of Peter Lavelle’s CrossTalk, guests, including Miguel De La Torre, are asked, since Obama says US policy toward Cuba has “failed”, what’s to be done to correct this failure.
- Dallas Baptist Standard - June 17, 2010
Baptists view growing Hispanic population as opportunity
This concerns Cuban-born Miguel De La Torre, an outspoken advocate for comprehensive immigration reform.
- Word and Way - April 18, 2010
Reading the Bible through the eyes of poverty yields different interpretations
Written by Vicki Brown.
- The Baptist Standard - April 08, 2010
Reading the Bible through the eyes of poverty yields different interpretations (with Video)
Written by Vicki Brown, Word and Way. Features Video Interview – Distribution of Wealth, Kaitlin Chapman, Texas Baptist Christian Life Commission Conference, McAllen, TX.
- Holland Sentinel - October 23, 2009
Church briefs: Author to address immigration policy and Christian ethics
- Personal website
- Wikipedia Article
- ProfNet expert of the week
- Judgement Day? or Not?
p(. CBSNews – Miguel De La Torre fielded questions from media across the country as predictions of Judgement Day neared.
- Dead chicken believed to be part of Santeria ritual
- The Denver Post Denver Catholics Celebrate the Naming of the New Pope, by Electa Draper. Miguel De La Torre quoted.
- Catholic News Service Whoever church chooses as pope, his voice matters, say non-Catholics, By Dennis Sadowski Catholic News Service. Miguel De La Torre quoted.
- Al Jazeera Pope Francis: A symbol of change?Joining Inside Story Americas, with presenter Shihab Rattansi, are guests: Ivan Petrella, an Argentine social theorist; Miguel de la Torre, a religion professor at the Iliff School of Theology; and Sister Mary Ellen Lacy one of the “Nuns on the Bus” who traveled across the US during the presidential election campaign to promote social justice and protest against cuts in programmes for the poor.
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