The Challenges of the Changing Religious Imagination in Latin America

6:30pm Reception
7:00pm Presentation

Geraldina Céspedes, OP, of Rafael Landívar University in Guatemala City gives this next talk in CWCIT's Spiritual Works of Mercy Series. She addresses the work of mercy known as "counseling the doubtful" as it relates to Latin America's changing religious landscape.

Assessing contemporary Latin America’s religious landscape means going beyond the headlines about the rise of Pentecostal movements and the Catholic Church’s lost monopoly. Rather than religious decline, the region is experiencing a spiritual revival and reshaping of the idea of “religion.” This realignment shows great diversity among peoples and common themes across borders—the Pentecostalism of daily life (not just religious practice); the deinstitutionalization of religion; and the blending of nationalism, atheism, religiosity, and idolatry. The “religious imagination” is alive and well, even as it challenges older ideas and practices.

About the Speaker
Geraldina Céspedes, OP, is a professor of systematic theology at Rafael Landívar University in Guatemala City. She pays special attention in her work to the voices of those traditionally ignored in earlier scholarship—women, the indigenous community, peoples of African descent, and the laity. 


About the Photo
Inside the Metropolitan Cathedral of Saint Sebastian in Rio de Janeiro. Designed by architect Edgar Fonseca, the modern church (built between 1964 and 1979) was intended to echo the ancient Mayan pyramids.

About the Spiritual Works of Mercy
Acts of compassion, the Spiritual Works of Mercy guide us to do as Jesus did and help our neighbors in their times of spiritual and emotional need. Though sometimes worded differently, the seven spiritual works of mercy are

  • Share the faith (often worded as "instruct the ignorant").
  • Counsel the doubtful.
  • Admonish the sinner.
  • Comfort the afflicted.
  • Forgive offenses willingly.
  • Bear wrongs patiently.
  • Pray for the living and the dead.

Learn more about the spiritual works of mercy here. For a guide to prayerful reflection on the spiritual works of mercy, visit the Archdiocese of Milwaukee's website. And explore the parallel 7 corporal works of mercy, which focus on responding to the basic physical needs of our human family.


Please contact CWCIT at or 773.325.4158.


Parking at DePaul
Street parking (both free & metered) is sometimes available on campus, but there are also 2 parking garages available for visitors**:

~ Sheffield Parking Garage (2331 N. Sheffield Ave.)
~ Clifton Parking Deck (2330 N. Clifton Ave.)

**For a discounted rate, please ask for validation at the event's information table. Discounted rates are as follows:

Entrance before 4:00pm = $9.25
Entrance after 4:00pm = $7.25

Thursday, April 11, 2019 at 6:30pm to 8:30pm

Student Center (Lincoln Park), 314B
2250 N Sheffield Ave

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