Popular Catholicism is one of the most distinctive elements of Latino culture, an essential dimension of any project of Latino theology. In The Faith of the People Orlando Espin presents the most concentrated and systematic reflection on this theme. Examining such traditions as deviation to the crucified Christ and to the Virgin of Guadalupe, Espin shows how Popular Catholicism offers a source for vital insight into such theological issues as the nature of God, the Trinity, Christology, and salvation. As Espin explains, it is a matter of taking seriously the expressions of faith of ordinary people – not simply as a sociological phenomenon or a “pastoral problem,” but as a font of intuition, wisdom, and living revelation.
Orlando O. Espin is professor of theology and Director of the Center for the Study of Latino Catholicism at the University of San Diego. A past president of the Academy of Catholic Hispanic Theologians in the United States (ACHTUS), he is the founding editor of The Joural of Hispanic/Latino Theology. His many books include Grace and Humaness, From the Heart of Our People (co-edited with Miguel H. Diaz) and Idol and Grace.