Michael Martínez, S.J., is a Jesuit scholastic and a rapper—and he wants you to know the two are not mutually exclusive. 

“Some people think [hip-hop and God] are completely disconnected. But when we actually come to look at both, we try to see God in all things, and this is one way of doing that,” Martínez, FCRH ’13, said in an interview before the main event.

On Oct. 25, Martínez returned to his alma mater to share how he blends hip-hop with Ignatian spirituality

Under Flom Auditorium’s stage lights, he performed several original songs and spoke to alumni, faculty, staff, and students at Fordham’s Ignatian Week event “Prophetic Fire: The Power of Hip-Hop, Media, and Faith,” sponsored by Campus Ministry and the Francis and Ann Curran Center for American Catholic Studies.  

“One of the main missions that you have as a Jesuit scholastic and as a Jesuit, period, is to set hearts on fire. Set hearts on fire with love …  for something greater than yourself,” Martínez said. “For me, music is one powerful way [of doing that]. It’s a universal language that speaks and crosses borders, cultures, and even language. It connects with people.” 

Martínez, a Cuban American from Miami, graduated from Fordham College at Rose Hill with degrees in philosophy and psychology in 2013. Later that year, he joined the Society of Jesus in the Antilles Province (Cuba, Dominican Republic, and Miami). He currently serves as a theology teacher and campus minister at his high school alma mater, Belen Jesuit Preparatory School, in Miami. 

For more information about Martínez, visit his website: http://www.mikemartinezsj.com


Taylor is a visual storytelling strategist in Fordham University's marketing and communications department, where she documents University life through photography and video. Since joining Fordham in 2018, she has served as a writer, photographer, videographer, and social media manager, dividing her time between University Marketing and Communications and the Office of the President. She earned her bachelor's degree in journalism from Stony Brook University's School of Communication and Journalism and her master's degree in public media from Fordham University's Graduate School of Arts and Sciences. Her work has appeared on NPR, NBC New York, and amNewYork METRO.