Guajardo has taught philosophy and history of religion at Coastal Bend College in Beeville for the past seven years and been pastor of Primera Iglesia Bautista in Mineral since 2007. He was pastor of Primera Iglesia Bautista in Beeville, 1996-2000.
BUA President René Maciel noted that Guajardo was receiving the Doctor of Divinity degree from the university “for a lifetime of faithful commitment to Jesus Christ, for decades of service to this University as a professor, trustee and friend, for unwavering dedication to being a learner-teacher and a scholar-writer, and for showing us how to love ‘the least of these’ while serving the King of Kings.”
His 50-plus years in the ministry has included six pastorates, staff positions in four Baptist associations, eight years as professor at Hispanic Baptist Theological Seminary (the forerunner of BUA) and five years creating the Spanish language materials division of the Southern Baptist Sunday School Board in Nashville. He is the author of numerous books and magazine articles.
He and his late wife, Frances, served with the Southern Baptist Home Mission Board for 31 years in various ministries in Texas and Florida.
“My philosophy of ministry is based on one of the most provocative passages of scripture, Matthew 25: 31-46,” Guajardo said. “One line in the passage moves me deeply: ‘Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me.’”
“My philosophy of ministry is also colored by the word itself. The word ministry means service and therefore a minister is a servant. I feel that this was Jesus’ earthly example and teaching — to help people, to alleviate human need. I try to guide my ministry by this biblical concept.”
That outlook is the exact reason BUA selected Guajardo for its first honorary doctorate,” Provost Javier Elizondo explained.
“We felt it was vital that the initial honoree be someone who exemplifies what we aspire for all of our graduates to be — a humble servant who exhibits a vital faith in Jesus Christ in loving ways that reach across cultures,” Elizondo added. “Dr. Guajardo loves the Lord, loves people, loves education and gives tirelessly of himself on behalf of others. He was the first Hispanic in many Baptist leadership positions in Texas and in the Southern Baptist Convention. We wanted to set the bar high — and we have done that.”
Guajardo earned his B.A. from the University of Corpus Christi, a master of divinity from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in Fort Worth and a doctor of ministry from Golden Gate Baptist Theological Seminary in Mill Valley, Calif.