Assistant Professor of Theological Studies
Ph.D., Graduate Theological Union (2010)
M.A., Washington Theological Union (1997)
B.A., University of California, Santa Barbara (1989)
Dr. Hoover examines the interplay of religion and culture in the United States, making use of both sociological and theological perspectives. Recently he has focused on parish research, including a qualitative research project called The Shared Parish Project. The project, funded by the Lilly Endowment via the Congregational Studies Team, a group of sociologists of religion and practical theologians, looks at shared parishes in Southern California. Shared parishes are Roman Catholic parishes with multiple cultural groups, each with their own masses and ministries but sharing the parish facilities (and often leadership as well).
Dr. Hoover received his Ph.D. from the Graduate Theological Union, where he also studied sociology at Cal Berkeley and wrote a dissertation based on a yearlong ethnographic study of a culturally diverse Catholic parish in the Midwest. He taught graduate students in ministry at the Institute of Pastoral Studies at Loyola University Chicago, the Franciscan School of Theology in Berkeley, and the Dominican School of Philosophy and Theology in Berkeley. Through LMU extension, he has facilitated worships in intercultural ministry training, including cultural orientation for international priests beginning ministry in the United States (COPIM) and the United States Catholic Bishops’ program, Building Intercultural Competency for Ministers (BICM). He consults with parishes and offers worships for other organizations, and he previously served in parish ministry in culturally diverse parishes in New York City, Chicago, and the San Francisco Bay Area. He co-founded the Catholic seeker website, BustedHalo.com, and he currently serves on the board of the Latino/a Theology and Ministry Initiative at LMU, the coordinating committee for the 2014 National Symposium on Hispanic Ministry, and the administrative team in practical theology for the Catholic Theological Society of America.