Fernando Alcántar was born and raised in Mexico and immigrated to the United States as a teenager. He has a Bachelor's Degree in Psychology and a Master's Degree in Organizational Leadership from Azusa Pacific University, one of the top Christian Universities in the nation. He worked at APU for eight years as Senior Coordinator of North American Partnerships. There, he oversaw hundreds of churches in Mexico and helped mobilize over 9,000 missionaries a year from all over the United States and Canada. He innovated dozens of new ministries and developed unprecedented partnerships with government officials, nonprofits, schools, businesses, and churches. He has spoken in front of thousands sharing his faith and motivating people into Christian ministry, and traveled around the world serving marginalized communities.
He left APU to take the role of Director of Leadership Development for Young People for the California-Pacific Annual Conference of The United Methodist Church. "Cal-Pac" oversees almost 400 churches for about 83,000 members across Southern California, Hawaii, Guam and Saipan. In this role, he oversaw youth and young adult ministries across the region, served as an ambassador to ethnic caucuses, and developed breakthrough leadership programs for its constituents. He was considered by many as the spokesperson for emerging United Methodism.
It was towards the end of his term with the UMC that he reached the twilight of his theological process out of Christianity. He left the religious community and returned to Higher Education where he served at Utah State University Eastern as Director of Student Life. Moving to the Mormon epicenter proved to be a challenging option, but it was the place where he finally realized his full sexual identity. He eventually resigned in September of 2013 after constantly being personally and professionally attacked for issues administrators admitted were related to him being non-Mormon, and his sexuality.
Once a high profile religious leader, Fernando wants to use this book to come out as "gaytheist" to help strengthen a national narrative of understanding, tolerance and acceptance. He also wants to help give a voice to those hiding in the shadows, afraid to publicly question their religious and sexual identity for fear of isolation and retaliation.
To the Cross and Back: An Immigrant's Journey from Faith to Reason
- By: Fernando Alcántar, Dan Barker
- Narrated by: Dan Barker, Fernando Alcántar
- Length: 12 hrs and 10 mins
A Mexican immigrant and rising star within the Christian community abandons his faith and comes out as a gay atheist in this exceptionally moving and soul-searching memoir.
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Regular price: $24.95