The Rev. Dr. Ignacio Castuera is a United Methodist minister currently serving Trinity United Methodist Church in Pomona, California.
He was also the first Mexican-American district superintendent of the United Methodist Church in the Los Angeles District and went on to become the pastor of Hollywood United Methodist Church. Over his 11 years at Hollywood UMC he transformed the church into a center of the growing movement aimed at creating a positive religious response to the AIDS pandemic. Gigantic red ribbons adorn the church’s tower as a reminder to all of the congregation’s commitment. Six years before his retirement, the Rev. Dr. Castuera became the first National Chaplain for Planned Parenthood Federation of America.
An accomplished preacher and author, Ignacio edited a collection of sermons gleaned from those given by various pastors from several denominations on the Sunday after the infamous Rodney King riots. His book, Dreams on Fire: Embers of Hope: From the Pulpits of Los Angeles After the Riots, became one of the top 10 religious books of 1992. In November 2004, he served as the Jameson Jones Preacher in the Prophetic Tradition at the Iliff School of Theology. Dr. Castuera was the guest preacher at historic Riverside Church of New York on Pentecost Sunday 2004.
The Rev. Dr. Castuera is a graduate of the School of Theology at Claremont, where he studied and wrote about the problems of violence and the patriarchal worship of a mother goddess in Mexican culture. After completing his education, Ignacio served at churches in Mexico, as well as in Hawai‘i and California. Dr. Castuera prides himself on his social justice advocacy work, having crossed the country to testify before state legislatures and lobby for causes he believes in. A member of Compassion & Choices Board of Directors, he believes strongly the everybody should have access to a full range of end-of-life options, including medical aid in dying.