Honorary Degrees
1918 - Present

Gustavo  Gutierrez 

Doctor of Divinity  2000
Status: conferred

Father Gustavo Gutiérrez, Peruvian priest and scholar, has remapped contemporary understanding of theology and the crucial role that institutional churches can play in resisting oppression of the poor. As author of Teologia de la Liberacion: Prospectivos (A Theology of Liberation: History, Politics and Salvation), he is known as the father of liberation theology, one of the most influential movements in contemporary theology. Father Gutiérrez drew international attention to the plight of the poor in Latin America when he challenged his church to work for liberation and justice by identifying and changing the social, political, and economic structures that perpetuated oppression, rather than by performing only traditional acts of charity. His work has made a profound impact on the interconnections between political freedom and religious beliefs and has provided a firm intellectual grounding for modern "liberation" movements. For his theological and philosophical insights that have transformed the world and the role of religion, and for his courage in reforming the relationship between faith and freedom, Southern Methodist University is honored to award Father Gustavo Gutiérrez the degree of Doctor of Divinity, honoris causa.