Dr. Leopoldo (Leo) Sánchez was born in Concepción, Chile and raised in Panama City, Republic of Panama, where he attended the Instituto Episcopal San Cristóbal. After spending a couple of years with a Lutheran family of farmers in the state of Iowa as a high school foreign exchange student, he became a communicant member of The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod. After completing studies in theology, psychology, and music at Concordia University Wisconsin, he finished his M.Div. at Concordia Theological Seminary, Ft. Wayne, where he majored in historical theology.
Dr. Sánchez has worked with local churches in Caracas, Venezuela and San José, Calif. He received his Ph.D. from Concordia Seminary (2003). As a doctoral student, he was the recipient of a 3-year grant from the Hispanic Theological Initiative of the Pew Charitable Trusts. Dr. Sánchez has been teaching systematic theology at Concordia Seminary since 2004 and was appointed Director of its Center for Hispanic Studies (CHS) in 2006 and The Werner R.H. and Elizabeth Ringger Krause Chair for Hispanic Ministries in 2007. As CHS Director, he oversees, leads, and partners with CSL faculty, as well as a team of Spanish-speaking staff, instructors, and regional coordinators from across the U.S. in the development and implementation of Spanish-language lay theological education, ministerial formation, and graduate programs, as well as research and continuing education initiatives for Hispanic/Latino constituencies.
Dr. Sánchez researches a wide range of classic and current topics in theology/religion and seeks to present them in engaging language and formats. Main interests are in pneumatology (doctrine of the Holy Spirit), Trinitarian theology, and issues related to Hispanic/Latino theology and missions. His publications include Pneumatología: El Espíritu Santo y la espiritualidad de la iglesia (St. Louis, Missouri: Editorial Concordia, 2005); entries on “immigration,” “salsa worship, and “presentation of children” in the recently published encyclopedia Hispanic American Religious Cultures, 2 vols. (Santa Barbara: ABC-CLIO, 2009); as well as articles in Concordia Journal, Missio Apostolica, and other journals. He is currently working on Oración y Vocación, his second book for Editorial Concordia’s Biblioteca Teológica Concordia series, and an essay for an upcoming festschrift in honor of Lutheran theologian Carl Braaten.
Outside of the immediate Seminary setting, Dr. Sánchez regularly speaks at pastors’ conferences and congregational settings in the U.S. and abroad. He serves in various committees, think tanks, and boards that engage issues in Hispanic/Latino theology and missions. In terms of serious hobbies, he is a double-bass player with the St. Louis Civic Orchestra, plays jazz and Latin bass gigs once in a while, and takes classes in or reads books on music history and theory for fun. He lives in St. Louis with his wife, Tracy Lynn, and their two children, Lucas Antonio and Ana Victoria.
- Assistant Professor of Systematic Theology
- Director of the Center for Hispanic Studies
- The Werner R.H. Krause and Elizabeth Ringger Krause Endowed Chair for Hispanic Ministries
- B.A., Concordia University Wisconsin, Mequon, Wis.
- M.Div., Concordia Theological Seminary, Ft. Wayne, Ind.
- Ph.D., Concordia Seminary, St. Louis, Mo.
801 Seminary Place
St. Louis, MO 63105
Office phone: 314-505-7273
- S100 Lutheran Mind*
- S115 Systematics I*
- S116 Systematics II*
- S117 Systematics III*
- S410 The Holy Spirit
- S470 Trends in Modern Theology (Roman Catholic Theology Today)
- S403, S802 The Trinity
- S870 Seminar in Contemporary Theology (Spirit Christology, Roman Catholic Theology Today)
*These courses are also regularly taught in Spanish through Concordia Seminary’s Center for Hispanic Studies
- “Anointed with the Spirit: Missionary Implications of a Spirit-Christology”
- “On Lutheran Spirituality: Oratio, Meditatio, Tentatio as the Work of Christ’s Spirit”
- “Towards a Theology of the Gifts of the Spirit and Its Implications for the Church”
- “No hablo español!: Realistic Steps Towards Meaningful Outreach to Latinos in the U.S.”
- “An Introduction to Latin American and U.S. Hispanic Theologies”
- “A Lutheran Approach to the Poor: A Case Study on the Two Kinds of Righteousness”
- “On the Virgin of Guadalupe: On the Relationship Between Gospel and Culture”
- “Reflections on Immigration: A Case Study on Vocation and the Two Kingdoms”
- “The Church in the Borderlands: Ecclesiology from the Margins”
- “Towards a Lutheran Theology and Practice of Prayer and Vocation”
Links to Resources
- Pneumatología: El Espíritu Santo y la espiritualidad de la iglesia (St. Louis, Missouri: Editorial Concordia, 2005)
- “Do Divine Election and Human Justification Still Matter to the World?—Making Room for the Broader Anthropological Significance of Traditional Doctrines,” Testamentum Imperium 2 (2009): 1-17.
- “Toward an Ecclesiology of Catholic Unity and Mission in the Borderlands: Reflections from a Lutheran Latino Theologian,” Concordia Journal 35/1 (2009): 17-34.
- “Praying to God the Father in the Spirit: Reclaiming the Church’s Participation in the Son’s Prayer Life,” Concordia Journal 32/3 (2006): 274-295.
- “What Does Japan Have To Do With Either Latin America Or U.S. Hispanics?: Reading Kazoh Kitamori’s ‘Theology of the Pain of God’ From A Latino Perspective,” Missio Apostolica 12/1 (2004): 36-47.
- “God against Us and for Us: Preaching Jesus in the Spirit,” Word & World 24/2 (2003): 134-145.