PROF. GILBERTO is a Tejano, a Friar Minor (Franciscan) and Full Professor of the Theological Study of Christian Spirituality. Gilberto taught the theological study of Christian spirituality for 15 years at the Catholic Theological Union before moving to Rome to work in Educational Technology at the Franciscan school, the Pontifical University Antonianum. He was also translator/interpreter for the OFM general Curia.
I was a student 40 years ago when CTU began the Hispanic Ministry Program in response to the Latino students’ complaint that we were not being prepared to minister to our own people. The program was first directed by the Chicano Theologian Andrés Guerrero and has gone through various directors, including myself. It was during my tenure that it became the Hispanic Theology and Ministry Program, highlighting the need for people ministering to and with Latin@s to be familiar with the theology of U.S. Latin@ theologians and not just Latin American theologians. In the capable hands of Dr. Carmen Nanko Fernández, HTMP has made substantial strides in familiarizing the CTU faculty with Latin@ theology.
CTU’s HTMP is the oldest such program in the USA. Through thick and thin, CTU has remained committed to serving the Latin@s of the USA with HTMP and this is something that needs to be celebrated, fostered and continued into the future.
In March of 2020 he was named Secretary of the Pontifical Academy of Mary International (PAMI) by Pope Francisco. In June of 2022 the Pope freed him from his position with PAMI so that he can be the John Duns Scotus Chair of Franciscan Spirituality and Professor of Spirituality at CTU.
As past president of the Academy of Catholic Hispanic Theologians of the United States and as a member of the Society for the Study of Christian Spirituality, he continues to pursue his research and writing in the area of Latino/a Spirituality. He is currently editing a book on methods for the study of spirituality, which should be out in late 2022 or early 2023. He is also finishing up a book the Marian Spirituality of Sor Juana de la Cruz Vasquez Gutierrez, a Spanish Franciscan sister who was a mystic, a pastor and a preacher to royalty, prelates, nuns and her parishioners in the early 1500s.