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Hispanic - Latinx Theologies

What is Hispanic-Latino/a/x theology?

Hispanic theology can be defined as the distinct theologies that emerge out of the social and cultural contexts of Latino/a peoples which have some shared characteristics. These common traits make Latino/a theology a communal undertaking that is scholarly, pastoral, and organically connected to grassroots communities.

Latino/a theology insists on doing theology in a relevant contextual way that is both in dialogue with the received dominant latino/a traditions as well as questioning of them and their claims of being the standard. Moreover, there is no such thing as one single, unified  Hispanic/Latino/a theology, but rather a multiplicity of perspectives within the diverse Latino/a communities that articulate distinctive and relevant Hispanic viewpoints for the larger endeavor of Christian theology as a whole.

To varying degrees, Hispanic or Latino/a theology also explores the impact and occasional influence of alternative Latino/a religious traditions, including “older” alternatives of Indigenous beliefs and practices, African Diaspora religious traditions such as Santería, as well as more recent or “newer” religious movements. Moreover, some Latinos/Latinas have multiple religious involvements in several groups and traditions—sometimes concurrently—that impact contemporary beliefs and practices.

-- Handbook of Latina/o Theologies, Miguel A. De La Torre and David Edward Aponte.

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What is the difference between Hispanic and Latinx?

Latin America encompasses many diverse countries and peoples. Though most of these countries are largely Catholic and Spanish-speaking, thanks to a shared history of colonization by Spain, they have at least as many differences as they do similarities with each other. In the United States the terms "Hispanic" and "Latino" (or "Latina" for a woman; sometimes written as “Latinx” to be gender-neutral) were adopted in an attempt to loosely group immigrants and their descendants who hail from this part of the world. The terms are often used interchangeably, though the words can convey slightly different connotations. It is important to clarify that the categories refer only to a person's origin and ancestry. A Latinx or Hispanic person can be any race or color.

"Hispanic" is generally accepted as a narrower term that includes people only from Spanish-speaking Latin America, including those countries/territories of the Caribbean or from Spain itself. With this understanding, a Brazilian could be Latino and non-Hispanic, a Spaniard could be Hispanic and non-Latino, and a Colombian could use both terms. However, this is also an imperfect categorization, as there are many indigenous peoples from Spanish-speaking countries who do not identify with Spanish culture and do not speak the dominant language. In day-to-day life, many Latin American immigrants and descendants simply prefer to state their countries of origin directly.

-- Britannica,