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Faith-Based Communities

1. Faith-Based Communities

Moderator: Dr. Efraín Agosto, Professor, New York Theological Seminary (NY, NY)
Panelists:
Rev. Eric Cruz, Pastor, St. John Chrysostom and Regional Coordinator of Catholic Charities for the Bronx (Bronx, NY)
Reverend Roberto Luis Lugo, Director (Philadelphia, PA)
Rev. Dr. Damaris Whittaker, Senior Minister, Center Church - The First Church of Christ, UCC (Hartford, CT)

Dr. Efraín Agosto

Rev. Eric Cruz

Rev. Roberto Luis Lugo

Rev. Dr. Damaris Whittaker


Dr. Efraín Agosto has been Professor of New Testament Studies at New York Theological Seminary since July 2011. Formerly, he was Academic Dean (2007-2011), Professor of New Testament and Director of the Programa de Ministerios Hispanos at Hartford Seminary (1995-2011). Professor Agosto, a Puerto Rican New Yorker, graduated from Columbia University with a B.A. in History (1977) before moving to Boston to complete his M.Div. at Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary (1982) and his Ph.D. in New Testament at Boston University (1996).

He has also served in pastoral ministry in Latino/a Pentecostal, Baptist and Congregational churches in New York, Boston, and Hartford. Agosto’s publications include two books: Servant Leadership: Jesus and Paul (Chalice Press, 2005) and Corintios, a Spanish-language commentary on 1 and 2 Corinthians (Fortress Press, 2008). He is also the newly named General Editor for Perspectivas: The Journal of the Hispanic Theological Initiative, an online journal highlighting the theological work of emerging Latino/a scholars in theology and religion. He and his wife, Olga Gisela, proud parents of two adult children, Joel and Jasmin, live in West Hartford, Connecticut.


Rev. Eric Cruz


El Evangelista Roberto Lugo lleva 22 años en el ministerio. Se desempeña como predicador, maestro, escritor y conferencista. A la edad de 15 años, se graduó del Instituto Teológico y en el año 2007 obtuvo un bachillerato en Psicología Clínica y Liderazgo Cristiano en la Universidad Patten en Oakland California. Es presidente y fundador de Robert Lugo Ministries, Inc. Organización que tiene como fin difundir el evangelio de Cristo através del mundo entero. Su misión se centra en compartir el amor de Cristo con el ser humano a través de Clínicas de Salud, Seminarios de Educación Cristiana, Construcción de Viviendas y Evangelismo Explosivo. Actualmente dirige dos grandes eventos: “Generación Real” evento de capacitación ministerial que ha entrenado cientos de pastores y líderes; y “Liberación,” evento de alcance evangelístico que ha ganado cientos de almas en Puerto Rico, Estados Unidos y Europa. More...


The Reverend Dr. Damaris D. Whittaker is United Church of Christ minister who joined the church staff in September, 2012. She previously served as the Director of Marketing and Development at the Christian Activities Council of the UCC, and as the co-pastor at Iglesia Cristiana Nueva Esperanza. Rev. Damaris has been an active speaker and advocate on issues of domestic violence, women’s leadership, and health care, and has worked in grassroots organizations that have provided pastoral and substance abuse counseling. More...