Assistant Professor of Theology and Religious Studies; Director of Honors Program
Office: Administration Building, Room 457
Office hours: Monday and Friday, 8:00 a.m. - 8:50 a.m.; Wednesday, 11:00 a.m. - 11:55 a.m. and 2:45 p.m.- 3:45 p.m.
Ph.D., Boston College; S.T.L., Weston Jesuit School of Theology; S.T.B., Centro de Estudos Superiores da Companhia de Jesus, Brazil; Lic. Phil., Pontificia Universidad Catolica del Peru; B.A., E.S.P.F.L. Antonio Ruiz de Montoya, Peru.
Professor Vidaurrazaga was born and raised in Peru, and also studied in Brazil before coming to the United States. Educated by the Jesuits from elementary school until his doctorate, he engages the study and the teaching of theology not only as a means to know more about God, but also as a foundational component of the Humanities today. Generationally, Professor Vidaurrazaga belongs to the first generation of theologians who grew up after Vatican II, and geographically he is heir to the vibrant tradition of Latin American theology started in the Conference of Medellin. His approach to theology is very attentive to the historical context of texts and ideas, and to the social consequences of the choices that we make as individuals and as communities of faith.
Professor Vidaurrazaga's main research focuses on the interaction between Scripture, liturgy and ethics. Other fields of interest include Catholic Social Teaching, Liberation Theology, and the role of theology within a liberal arts education.
Professor Vidaurrazaga is passionate about teaching, but he is even more passionate about encouraging his students to do find their own ways to learn and to form their own ideas. He encourages the expression of diverse ideas in class and is always supportive of students who want to pursue research that relates the course to their own careers of personal interests.
What I Love About Emmanuel:
I love the mission of Emmanuel, and I find that being part of this community of scholars and agents of social change offers me the possibility to fulfill an important part of my mission in this world.
Courses I Teach
- THRS 1103 - Exploring Catholic Theology
- THRS 1111 - Exploring the Bible (both face to face and online)
- THRS 2203 - Jesus and Christian Ethics
- THRS 2209 - History of Christianity
- THRS 2213 - Liberation Theology
- THRS 3135 - Contemporary Issues in Roman Catholicism
- THRS 3201 - The Bible in Art
- FYS 1101.57 - First Year Seminar: Christian Morality in the Roman World
- HON 2402 - Justice: Theories, Evidence and Practice
Publications + Presentations
- "Peru," Worldmark Encyclopedia of Religious Practices, in print.
- "Baptism and Christian Morality: Ritual Initiation into the Christian Community and Initiation into the Community's Morality." "Ahme nach, was du vollziehst..." Positionsbestimmungen zum Verhältnis von Liturgie und Ethic. Ed. Martin Stuflesser and Stephan Winter. Studien zur Pastoralliturgie, 22. Regensburg, Germany: Pustet, 2009. 121-136.
Presentations at conferences
- "¿Opción preferencial por los pobres de arriba abajo? El 'precio de la fama' de volverse un principio teólogico-moral católico," presented during the second world-wide conference of Catholic Moral theologians "Catholic Theological Ethics in the World Church. In the Currents of History-from Trent to the Future" in Trent, Italy, July 25, 2010.
- Respondent to David Hollenbach and Daniel Finn in the first of three panels celebrating the 25th anniversary of "Economic Justice for All" at the annual meeting of the Catholic Theological Society of America, in Cleveland, Ohio, on June 12, 2010.
- "Baptismal Ethics as the Transformation of the Person's Fundamental Relationships," presented during the fifty-fourth annual convention of the College Theology Society at Salve Regina University, in Newport, Rhode Island, on May 31, 2008.
- "Baptism and Christian Morality: Ritual Initiation into the Christian Community and Initiation into the Community's Morality," presented during the symposium "Imitate the Mystery You Celebrate...," organized by Prof. Martin Stuflesser and the Jesuit Institute at Boston College, in Chestnut Hill, Massachussetts, in April, 2007.
Other professional presentations
- "The Catholic Church's Position with regard to Social Justice," Cambridge, MA, 2012.
- "How Catholics Read the Bible," Cambridge, MA, 2012.
- "Biblical Interpretation in the Catholic Church," Cambridge, MA, 2011.
- "Biblical History and Interpretation," Cambridge, MA, 2010.
- "The Catholic Church: A Pilgrim People through the Centuries," VOTF, Roslindale, MA, 2009.
- "Catholic Social Teaching on the Economy: Economic Justice for All," Emmanuel College - Center for Mission and Spirituality, Boston, MA, 2009.
- "The Catholic Way of Reading the Bible," Cambridge, MA, 2009.
- "Biblical History and Interpretation," Cambridge, MA, 2008.
Grants + Recognition
Flatley Fellowship (2003-2007) - Endowed fellowship in ethics at Boston College Theology Department.
Professor Vidaurrazaga is interested in using Scripture and liturgical practices as sources for Christian ethics. The rites of baptism, especially now with the retrieval of the Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults, offer an obvious point of departure. Paul's letters (especially Romans 6 and Galatians 3) offer a solid biblical foundation for this endeavor, and the example of patristic authors such as John Chrysostom provide a wealth of theological images and metaphors from which Professor Vidaurrazaga draws in his research. He is also interested in pursuing this kind of investigation with other rites and sacramental celebrations.
Other research interests of his include Liberation Theology, the History of the Church in Latin America, Catholic Social Teaching, and human development.
Professor Vidaurrazaga is also interested in the role of theology within a humanistic education today and in the broader mission of Catholic colleges today, both in the United States and in Latin America.