Powerhouse TV group Univisión produced a short, provocative video. It describes primarily the second generation U.S. Hispanic. It shows how Latinos in the U.S. have the capacity to negotiate two different worlds, seeing the good, the bad, and the ugly in both. One thinks of one who is neither here nor there, and yet in two places at the same time. This is part of the identity of the immigrant who, while assimilating to the new culture, retains a measure of respect for his family roots and his ethnocultural community of origin. This new Hispanic-American can also serve as a bridge person, one who can bring football and fútbol (soccer), cheeseburgers and tacos, Anglo and Latino together. Watching this video, my colleague Mark Kempff at the Center and I have noted how a secular TV station can effectively use video as a tool for encouraging businesses to invest in the Hispanic demographic. The people at Univisión is, in a secular sense, making the case for investing in the future. We then see how Hispanics only represent about 0.04% of the LCMS at the present time, far behind the current demographics where 1 out of 6 people in the U.S. is Hispanic. Wouldn’t it be wonderful if our Synod reflected in her church body the nation’s demographic reality? The LCMS is, historically, an immigrant church. Now we have great numbers of Hispanic immigrants in our midst, new Americans. Surely our Synod, who has received so much from the good Lord over the years, can respond more vigorously than Univisión’s clients to the opportunity of investing in reaching out to Hispanics in our midst. Investing in the Center for Hispanic Studies at the Seminary is one way you can help us to send out Hispanic pastors and deaconesses to congregations and missions in the U.S. to bring the Gospel of Jesus Christ to our Hispanic neighbors. Check out the Univisión video here.
Want to learn more about second generation Hispanics? See a CHS Annual Lecture on the topic here.