Robert Rivera

Associate Professor, St. John’s University

Dr. Rivera is Associate Professor of Theology at St. John’s University, and a member in the Theology and Religious Studies Dept. of St. John’s College of Liberal Arts and Sciences. He is a Nuyorican (New York born Puerto Rican), and is married with three children. He received his Ph.D. in Systematic Theology from Boston College. At St. John’s he teaches both undergraduate and graduate courses. Some of undergraduate courses he teaches are, THE 1000c Perspectives on Christianity, THE 3000 Global Catholicism, and THE 3245 Liberation Theologies. At the graduate level he teaches THE 410 Theologies of Liberation, and THE 435 Creation. His primary research and teaching interests have to do with the ways in which theology engages, shapes, and is shaped by social, cultural, political, historical, and economic realities and conditions in the U.S.; and the ways in which communities on the underside of U.S. history (Native, Black, Latine, Asian-American, LGBTQ) embody and express Christian traditions.

He is currently completing a book length manuscript that develops a Christology (thinking about who Jesus is, what he does, and why it’s important/ relevant) of liberation in the context of globalization and exclusion. His next book length manuscript will focus on Puerto Rico, reflecting theologically on the realities of debt, disaster, and diaspora. He is a member of a few academic theological societies, and has presented research papers at academic conferences, and at universities and colleges in the U.S. At St. John’s he’s been privileged to work with R.I.S.E. (Reach, Inspire, Succeed, Empower), a program that mentors incoming Black and Latine students, and support student groups such as Spectrum (focusing on LGBTQ communities), LASO (Latin American Students Organization), and Students of Consciousness, among others. He enjoys the classroom and engaging with students in and outside of class.