• Ph.D., Boston College
  • M.T.S., Harvard University
  • M.A., Fordham University
  • B.A., Fordham University


  • Introduction to Theology
  • Sacraments, Rites and Religious Symbols
  • Sacraments and Liturgy

Research Interests

  • Liturgy and Ethics
  • Virtue Ethics
  • Sin
  • Ecological Ethics
  • Technology Ethics
  • Migration
  • Thomas Aquinas
  • Augustine


Xavier M. Montecel, Ph.D., is a moral theologian whose primary research investigates the relationship between liturgy and ethics. He is interested most particularly in how Christian theologians model the connection between sacramental or religious practices and the moral life. Constructively, he attempts to imagine how a renewed theology of liturgy and life, founded in a strong eschatological sensibility, can support and sustain a Christian commitment to ecumenism, ecological responsibility, and liturgical reform.

In addition, Montecel is a scholar of fundamental moral theology, with a specialization in virtue ethics and theologies of sin. He reads and writes in a variety of areas in applied ethics, including LGBTQ+ issues, the environment, migration and technology. His work draws heavily on Thomas Aquinas and Augustine, as well as Catholic Social Teaching.

Montecel is a former Lilly Graduate Fellow and Flatley Fellow in Theological Ethics. His courses, both in ethics and in sacramental theology, emphasize the integrity of critical and creative theological reflection with attention to the embodied experience of marginalized groups.  


“Liturgy, Virtue, and the Foundations of an Ecclesial Ethic,” Journal of the Society of Christian Ethics (forthcoming; Fall/Winter 2022).

“Communion in Hope: Liturgy and Ethics in the Key of Virtue,” Ph.D. Dissertation, Boston College (2021).

“Consent, Negativity, and Contempt of God: Exploring Sin with Peter Abelard,” Journal of Religious Ethics (pending).

Review of An Ecological Theology of Liberation: Salvation and Political Ecology, by Daniel Patrick Castillo, Journal of Moral Theology 10:1 (2021): 219-220.

“Enacting the Promise of God: Christian Ethics and the Study of the Sacraments,” The Graduate Journal of Harvard Divinity School 2 (2016): 69-89.

“Christian Ethics and the Challenge of Ethical Constructivism,” Glossolalia 6:2 (Spring 2014): 77-97.

Professional Memberships

  • College Theology Society
  • Catholic Theological Society of America
  • Society of Christian Ethics
  • New Wine, New Wineskins, Young Catholic Moral Theologians
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