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‘Theological Conversations’ releases ‘500 Years and Counting’ for June 2017


Capella-Pratts says the ideals of the Reformation have not ended

by Gregg Brekke | Presbyterian News Service

Read in Spanish | Read in Korean

José Manuel Capella-Pratts. (Photo provided)

LOUISVILLE – In its sixth installment of Theological Conversations for 2017, the Theology, Formation and Evangelism ministry of the Presbyterian Church presents “500 Years and Counting” by the Rev. José Manuel Capella-Pratts, pastor of First Hispanic Presbyterian Church in Miami, Florida.

Hoping to provide historic and theological clarity for readers regarding the 500th anniversary of the Protestant Reformation being celebrated this year, Capella-Pratts’ paper seeks to move from a “tendency to understand the Reformation as a set of ideas and postulates to which to adhere” to a continued “journey of transformation and witness to divine grace.”

Calling on Reformation-era emphases that continue to challenge the present-day church, Capella-Pratts asks Presbyterians to consider the importance reformers placed on scriptural study, affirmation of confessions, education and the priesthood of all believers, seeing how they can form modern religious practice.

“The Reformation is not something that began 500 years ago and ended,” he says. “The Reformation is not a piece of literature that is meant to be confined to the library or a museum. The Reformation must continue the path of constant transformation.”

“Theological Conversations” is a series of papers designed to invite congregational leaders in the PC(USA) into theological conversation wherever they gather as sessions, presbyteries or for adult education in congregations. They began as a way to create space for conversations accessible to all church members. Each paper is a study resource with accompanying questions for conversation or reflection, suitable for use by both individuals and groups.

The paper is available in its original Spanish language version, and also in a Korean translation.

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José Manuel Capella-Pratts is an ordained minister of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) who holds a B.A. in psychology from the Inter-American University in Puerto Rico and a masters in divinity from the Evangelical Seminary of Puerto Rico. Capella-Pratts holds a degree in family pastoral care. While in Seminary, he has collaborated as a visiting professor teaching theology and Presbyterian government. He has served in presbyteries, synod and General Assembly. He pastored congregations in Caguas and Hato Rey, Puerto Rico. He is currently pastor of the First Hispanic Presbyterian Church in Miami, Florida, where he lives with his wife, Vilmarie Cintrón-Olivieri. He is passionate about teaching and the critical study of the Holy Scriptures and enjoys music, reading, technology and Star Wars, and during his free time he writes at presbyonline.org.


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