Austin Mathew Cruz
BA, University of St. Thomas (Houston) / MTS, University of Notre Dame / PhD, University of Notre Dame (Present)
Austin was born in Houston, Texas to Mexican-American parents, both of whose families have lived in Texas since the beginning of the 20th century. Initially formed in a predominantly Anglo, suburban parish, Austin’s experiences and formal study of theology led him to a new appreciation for his Hispanic Catholic faith as a unique and personal path to encountering God. Austin’s research interests include the rediscovery of the medieval genre of hagiography (writings of the lives of the saints) as a locus theologicus, theological anthropology, and Latinx studies. He hopes that examining the hagiographical and catechetical sources of Colonial Spain will help offer a greater self-understanding to Latinx Christians and appreciation for their faith. Austin hopes to serve both the Church and academia by expanding access to theological education in underserved communities.