Sunday Sermon: “Who Are the Poor?”

Dr. Arturo Chávez, President and CEO of the Mexican American Catholic College 

Dr. Arturo Chávez is the President and Chief Executive Officer of MACC, the Mexican American Catholic College in San Antonio, Texas. He has been a member of the MACC faculty since the year 2000, and was appointed President in 2007. Since then, Dr. Chávez has led the organization into its current transition from a Cultural Center to a Catholic College that offers B.A. and M.A. degrees in Pastoral Ministry. The unique degree plans are offered bilingually to meet the growing needs of Latinos for higher education, especially for service in faith communities.

Dr. Chávez has worked for over 30 years in a variety of ministries. As a teacher, youth minister, a chaplain to the incarcerated, and a community organizer. He founded a nonprofit youth organization called JOVEN and was instrumental in establishing other faith-based partnerships to address the urgent needs of families who are poor and disenfranchised. His commitment to community-based activism, education, and peace-building continues through his ministry as a teacher, facilitator, and international speaker.

Nationally recognized for his efforts to combat racism and poverty, he was appointed by President Barack Obama to serve as an advisor on the White House Council for Faith Based and Community Partnerships. Recently, Catholic Charities USA recognized him as “…a national champion of the poor” with the 2010 “Keep the Dream Alive Award” in honor of the Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Dr. Chávez holds a B.A. in Religious Studies from the University of Incarnate Word, a Masters degree from Oblate School of Theology of the Southwest, and a Ph.D. in Religious and Theological Studies, from the University of Denver and the Iliff School of Theology, with a focus on the relationship between religion and social change.

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