Our Pastor

 

Rev. Luis J. Ocasio Torres became our pastor in January 2019.

  • Compassion is his passion! — guided by the Spirit, training, and experience
  • Se habla español — opening doors to more neighbors
  • Preaches from the Word — by way of his heart
  • Education: M.Div. and Psy.D. in clinical psychology
  • PC(USA) connected — serving on the Committee of the General Assembly (COGA)
  • Lives out his faith in the community and his family

Full Bio

Formal Accomplishments and Pastoral Experience

The Committee on Ministry of the Presbytery of Florida has examined and approved Rev. Ocasio on theological soundness. His most recent academic degree is his Master of Divinity from Puerto Rico Evangelical Seminary, but he also holds a Doctorate in Psychology from Carlos Albizu University. After his ordination in 2014, he led a congregation composed primarily of employees and residents in the tourist area of Old San Juan. Under his leadership, that congregation grew and received a “1001 Worship Communities” grant for outreach to persons who are homeless. His last congregation was also involved in an ecumenical worship service called Oasis at Noon.

Strong Denominational Connections

Rev. Ocasio is currently serving on the Committee on the Office of the General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church (USA). This commitment will continue through 2020. In addition, his father in law is also the Presbyterian pastor who helped him discern his calling.

Experienced in Compassionate Caring

Rev. Ocasio had over a year’s experience dealing with the effects of hurricane Maria — working with Presbyterian Disaster Assistance to bring aid to pastors and their families throughout Puerto Rico. He’ll use that experience to lead our congregation in ongoing efforts to help those hurt by hurricane Michael. His background in clinical psychology has included, among other things, working with victims of sexual abuse — which has prepared him to be a compassionate listening ear for any possible counseling needs that might arise in our congregation.

Devoted Husband and Father

On the more personal side, Luis is also a devoted husband and father. We’ve all been charmed by his sons and blessed by the musical gifts of his wife Aracelis “Ary” Fernandez Nieves. The family are all Spanish/English bi-lingual — which helps our congregation be even more welcoming!