The Rev. Dr. Nelson Rivera to join ULS faculty in January 2024

November 1, 2023

Photo courtesy of Moravian Theological Seminary

The Rev. Dr. Nelson Rivera,  J. T. Hamilton Associate Professor of Doctrinal Theology at Moravian Theological Seminary in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, will join the faculty of United Lutheran Seminary in 2024. Dr. Rivera has been appointed as the St. John’s Summit Visiting Professor of Theology and Ethics from January 1 through June 30, 2024. Beginning July 1, 2024, Dr. Rivera begins a five-year, full-time appointment at ULS as Professor of Theology and Ethics. He will be based on the Philadelphia campus and teach both in-person and online courses. Dr. Rivera previously taught systematic theology and Hispanic ministry at the former Lutheran Theological Seminary at Philadelphia.

“As a former faculty member specializing in systematic theology and Hispanic ministry, Dr. Rivera brings a historic perspective to his new position at ULS,” said its president, the Rev. Dr. R. Guy Erwin. “I am happy and excited to have him rejoin our ranks. The St. John’s Summit Visiting Professorship is a distinguished title, and we are honored that such a respected academic and member of the church will be joining the ULS family.”

An ordained minister of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, Dr. Rivera has served parishes in various pastoral capacities in his native Puerto Rico and in the Greater Philadelphia area. He is a member of the 13th Round of Ecumenical Dialogue between the Lutheran Church and the Roman Catholic Church. His specialty areas are systematic theology, ethics, theologies of liberation, theology and science, and Lutheran confessional theology.

Dr. Rivera’s published work covers topics on confessional statements of faith as well as the application of evolutionary epistemologies in theology and the sciences. In his work as a translator and theological consultant for several liturgical and church resources, he edited a compendium of rites (in Spanish) for pastors and other church leaders.

Dr. Rivera holds a Ph.D. and a master’s of religion from Temple University; a master’s of sacred theology and a master’s of divinity from the former Lutheran Theological Seminary at Philadelphia (now ULS); and a bachelor’s from the University of Puerto Rico.  

Linda Fiore
Director of Strategic Marketing and Communications