PhD Student Profile: Emanuel (Ricky) Padilla

Area of Study: Theological and Ethical Studies

Born in Detroit, Michigan, Emanuel was acutely aware of his exile from Puerto Rico from an early age. He grew an awareness of his double mestizaje as one who was neither completely from the United States or the Island. This experience as part of the Puerto Rican diaspora is central to Emanuel’s research and ministry interests. He is pursuing doctoral studies to construct a theology of mestizaje that recaptures the history of colonization, reshapes conceptions of metiza/o identity, and informs ecclesial pursuits of justice. Emanuel’s desire is to serve the Church through non-traditional educational ministries. He does this as founder and president of World Outspoken and co-host of the Mestizo Podcast. Prior to enrolling at Garrett, Emanuel was a professor of theology at Moody Bible Institute, where he taught courses both on campus and online. He completed his MA in Systematic Theology at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School, with a thesis titled “Seeking Zion: The Gospel and the City We Make.” In his thesis, Emanuel studied the theological assumptions that shaped the 1909 Plan of Chicago. This plan served as an examples of how visions of the built environment shape the material conditions in which people live their lives. Emanuel’s interests continue to be shaped by his personal story and previous academic experiences.

Papers and Publications

“Doing Urban Ministry,” One Volume Seminary, Moody Publishers, forthcoming

“In the Heights and the Hope of Exiles,” Think Christian, July 2021 https://thinkchristian.net/in-the-heights-and-the-hope-of-exiles

“Erasing Afro-Latinos part 1 & 2,” World Outspoken, September 2020 https://www.worldoutspoken.com/articles-blog/erasing-afro-latinos-pt-1 & https://www.worldoutspoken.com/articles-blog/erasing-afro-latinos-pt-2

“Caring for Words in a Culture of Lies Book Review,” International Journal of Christianity and English Language Teaching (IJC&ELT, ISSN 2334-1866, online), Biola University, June 2018