The Rev. Carlos H. Puig, most recently of Sugar Land, Texas, made significant contributions “to Hispanic Ministry in the LCMS … [which] set the course for Hispanic Ministry still in place today,” said the Rev. Dr. Carlos Hernandez, director of LCMS Church and Community Engagement, which includes the strategic development of Hispanic ministry.
Puig died from natural causes Sept. 5 at the age of 91, and was followed in death by his wife, Joan (nee Woodmansee), Sept. 29. She also was 91. A joint memorial service is planned for 11 a.m. on Saturday, Oct. 22 at Christ Memorial Lutheran Church, 14200 Memorial Drive, Houston.
Puig served in the U.S. Navy and worked as a businessman in Miami before beginning his career in the church. His first position with the LCMS was as a missionary at-large to the Hispanic community in Racine, Wis.
Puig was later called by the Synod’s Board for Mission Services to serve as the first executive secretary for Hispanic Ministry, a position he began in 1979. Later, he also was responsible for administering the LCMS pastoral colloquy program for Hispanic Ministry.
In 1988, Puig joined Concordia Publishing House (CPH) as the director of the Ethnic Resources Department, where he was instrumental in the publication of a Spanish-language edition of The Book of Concord. He also supervised the production of a number of other resources, including a Spanish hymnal and a Hmong hymnal.
After retiring from CPH in 1993, Puig served at St. Luke Lutheran Church, Houston; spent two years as a missionary to Panama; and then served as director of Assimilation and Family Ministries at Christ Memorial.
At the 2006 National Hispanic Lutheran Convention in Irving, Texas, Puig was honored for his 30 years of service to LCMS Hispanic Ministry.
“His greatest source of human support and strength was his beloved wife, Joan, who often traveled with him,” Hernandez recalled. “He was all business, as we expected. She was a joyful presence, always asking about our families and sharing an abrazo — a big hug!”
The Puigs are survived by their two children — Dr. Carlos (Cheri) Puig of Sugar Land, Texas, and Carla (Ken) Abramczyk of Houston, Texas — and four grandchildren and five great-grandchildren.
Posted October 21, 2016