Stage in formation: Professed
Hometown: Barranquilla, Colombia
College: UC Berkeley
What drew you to the Augustinians? I narrowed my search to the Mendicants from the beginning because I have a Dominican uncle, and because I attended a Dominican elementary and middle school. While visiting a couple of Mendicant communities, I observed only with the Augustinians that there was unity, but that unity did not mean uniformity. I was drawn by observing friars with different political and theological points of views, different interests and personalities, caring for and enjoying one another’s company.
Favorite Saint: Maximos the Confessor. I have been very touched by ministry with refugees, and Maximos was a refugee himself escaping violence from the Sassanid Empire. To me he was a paragon of a Catholic man in the sense of being truly universal, and hence bringing different worlds together. Although he’s considered a Greek Father of the Church, he reads like a Western scholastic. Part of his life he lived in the East and part in the West. He was a monk who spent a lot of time in contemplation, but he also engaged in ministry, theological debates, and an Ecumenical council. I’m also fascinated by his cosmology. Even though he was a brilliant theologian, his Christology was unpopular with Church authorities at the time, and after being found to be a heretic, he suffered torture having his tongue and his right hand cut off. He died in exile as a heretic. Clearly he was ahead of his time since his views were vindicated 20 years after his death at an Ecumenical Council, and his Christology became official Church teaching to this day.
Favorite Augustine Quote:
Favorite Part about being an Augustinian? Showing up at an Augustinian house in a different country and being welcomed like a brother. Why? Because I feel like I belong to a family present all over the world, and I’m very proud of this Augustinian family for revealing the human side of Christ to the world.
Favorite Book: The Way of the Pilgrim
Favorite Pastime: Dancing