Wil Hernandez was born and raised in the Philippines. A graduate of Visual Communications (major in Advertising Design) at the University of the Philippines, Wil came on full-time staff with an international, interdenominational Christian organization right after college and served under it for 18 years.
In 1995, he went to the U.S. with his wife Juliet and his two sons, Jonathan and David, to pursue his Master of Theology (Th.M.) degree majoring in Counseling Ministry in a seminary in Texas. Upon graduation in 1999, the family moved to Southern California where Wil started his doctorate program at Fuller Theological Seminary in Pasadena. He finished his Ph.D. degree in Practical Theology with a special concentration in spirituality/spiritual formation. Upon graduation, Wil joined The Leadership Institute, a parachurch organization specializing in the integration of spiritual formation with leadership development.
Currently, Wil holds a private practice in a professional office in Pasadena doing counseling, life coaching, and spiritual direction (including running a 9-month Ignatian Spiritual Exercises for small groups following the 19th annotation of St. Ignatius of Loyola). On the side, Wil periodically teaches spirituality courses at Fuller Theological Seminary as an adjunct professor. His favorite course to teach is on the spirituality of Henri Nouwen, a course he himself developed out of his Ph.D. dissertation work. In addition, Wil also teaches various courses on Nouwen (both “live” and via online) at various Protestant and Catholic institutions such as Azusa Pacific University (CA), Loyola Marymount University (CA), Spring Arbor University (MI), Oblate School of Theology (TX), Tyndale College and Seminary (Canada) and Hope International University (CA).
In conjunction with The Nouwen Legacy, which he started under the umbrella of The Leadership Institute, Wil regularly conducts retreats and workshops for various churches and ecumenical groups all year round across the U.S. and abroad focusing mostly, but not exclusively, on the spirituality of Henri Nouwen. He has done several workshops on Nouwen at the Los Angeles Religious Education Congress. He is a frequent workshop presenter during the annual SOULFeast conference hosted by the Upper Room and serves on the faculty of its Academy for Spiritual Formation. Wil also lectures for the Institute for Adult Spiritual Renewal (formerly Retreats International) at Loyola University in Chicago. Every now and then, he gets invited to teach spiritual direction courses at both Pecos Benedictine Monastery’s School of Spiritual Direction (NM) and at the Center for Spiritual Development’s Art of Spiritual Direction and The Source programs (Orange, CA). As an active member of Spiritual Directors International (SDI), he serves on the Editorial Panel of Presence Journal and regularly conducts Nouwen workshops at SDI conferences.
Wil and his wife Juliet worship at St. James Episcopal Church in South Pasadena where he is actively involved in its parish ministries.
Click here to view Wil Hernandez's Curriculum Vitae.
Click here to read about Wil Hernandez's exposure and training in spiritual formation.
Wil Hernandez's Work on Henri Nouwen
The person of Henri Nouwen, in particular his spiritual formation dynamics and his lived spirituality, was the focal thrust of Wil Hernandez's Ph.D. dissertation paper. In 2005, Wil completed "with special distinction" his dissertation entitled A Spirituality of Imperfection: The Coinherence of Spirituality with Psychology, Ministry, and Theology in Henri J.M. Nouwen's Integrated Approach to Soul Care and Spiritual Formation.
Click here to read about Wil Hernandez's personal interest in Henri Nouwen.