The Friday E-Pistle (April 5, 2013)

A message from Bishop Vásquez

Official appointments

  • Rev. Brian Eilers, pastor of Our Lady of Wisdom Parish in San Marcos, will join the faculty of St. Mary's Seminary in Houston in Fall 2013.
  • Rev. Eugene Nyong as parochial vicar of St. Mary Cathedral Parish in Austin, effective March 22, 2013.
  • Rev. Jim Robertson will leave the faculty of St. Mary’s Seminary in Houston and return to the Diocese of Austin, effective June 1, 2013.
  • Deacon Cruz Banda to Santa Barbara Parish in Austin, effective April 1, 2013.

Feast of the Annunciation

Since March 25, 2013, was the Monday of Holy Week, the Solemnity of the Annunciation of the Lord, normally assigned to this day, was transferred to Monday, April 8, 2013.  At this Mass, the Gloria and the Creed are to be prayed and the Church calls us also to genuflect during the Creed at the words, “and by the Holy Spirit.”

Year of Faith

The Vatican reported that Pope Francis will continue the celebration of the Year of Faith. Pope Francis will also continue giving faith reflections and teachings at his Wednesday audiences.

In October 2012, Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio, SJ, now Pope Francis, presented a message to the people of Buenos Aires in which he shared his reflections about the Year of Faith. He spoke about the rich symbolism of closed doors and their prevalence in our world. He lamented, in particular, the doors of our hearts that are closed to one another and to our relationship with God. Most of his message is, however, focused on the blessings of doors that are open and how God is calling us to cross their thresholds — the door of our faith, the door of the Catholic Church, and the door that is always open to us, the Sacred Heart of Jesus.

Lumen Gentium Awards 2013

The 2013 Lumen Gentium Awards will be June 25 at the Mayborn Civic Center in Temple. Nominations from pastors are due April 26. During this Year of Faith, pastors should consider nominating those in their parish who “evangelize.” Pastors should also note that after 2013, future Lumen Gentium ceremonies will only be held in odd-numbered years (i.e., 2015, 2017, etc…). To submit a nominee, pastors should use the Lumen Gentium Nomination Packet.

Reflection question

Gospel Meditation

Please consider using the following question for the Third Sunday of Easter (April 14):

  • In today’s Gospel, Jesus reveals himself through the ordinary activities of fishing and preparing breakfast. He then speaks directly to Peter, calling him into a relationship of love and service. How do you think Christ is calling you to serve others in your community? In what ways do you encourage and support those who are discerning their own call to serve the Lord?
  • En el evangelio de hoy, Jesús se pone a descubierto a través de las actividades ordinarias de la pesca y preparación del desayuno. Luego habla directamente con Pedro, llamándolo a una relación de amor y servicio. ¿Cómo crees que Cristo te está llamando a servir a otros en tu comunidad? ¿De qué manera animas y apoyas a aquellos que están discerniendo su propio llamado para servir al Señor?

Young Adult Ministry

Theology on Tap

Father Daniel Liu, Director of St. Peter's Catholic Center in Waco, will discuss Faith and Science at the next Theology on Tap on April 10 at Casa Chapala (3010 W Anderson Ln., Austin, TX 78757). The evening begins with live music at 6 p.m. followed by the presentation at 7 p.m.  For more information, contact Jennifer Kodysz at (512) 949-2467.

Cedarbrake Catholic Retreat Center

Upcoming retreats

  • The Apostles of the Interior Life (religious sisters from Italy ministering at Texas A&M) are offering “Spring Of Water Welling Up to Eternal Life: The Journey of Faith: Receiving, Living and Witnessing” the weekend of April 12-14. The retreat reflects upon the gift of faith; how to receive and appreciate it in order to be able to share it and to be light to the World. The cost is $185, $155 or $75. For more information, e-mail
  • Father Angelo Bertini will lead Parables in Luke’s Gospel on April 20 at Cedarbrake Catholic Retreat Center. Father will explore his favorite parables and explain why Jesus used parables, what they mean, and how can we can apply them to our life today. The cost is $35 and includes lunch. For more information, e-mail

Worship Office

Adult confirmation

Adult Confirmation for the diocese will be celebrated May 4 at 10:30 a.m. at St. Helen Parish in Georgetown. The deadline for submission of names is April 19. If you have not submitted candidate names, please complete this form and submit it immediately to the Office of Worship. You may also register online.

Choir rehearsal

All diocesan musicians and singers are invited to participate in the diocesan choir for the Permanent Diaconate Ordination on April 13 at 10:30 a.m. at St. Margaret Mary Parish in Cedar Park. Rehearsal for the Ordination Mass is April 6 at St. Margaret Mary from 9 a.m. to noon.

Pro-Life Activities and Chaste Living

Thrive! for Adults

The purpose of this event is to educate all adults who have a role in the education of youth: parents, pastors, educators, health professionals and social workers. The message to the youth is that they can be loved now, as they yearn to be, but in ways consistent with biblical teaching. The event features Jason Evert, an internationally recognized chastity speaker and teacher and Marie Seale, director of the Office of Pro-Life Activities and Chaste Living for the Diocese of Austin.

An Adult Education Night will be offered at two different locations:

  •  Friday, May 17 in Bryan
  •  Saturday, May 18 in Austin

For more information visit  THRiVE! is sponsored by the Office of Pro-Life Activities and Chaste Living and the JPII Life Center.

Austin Prayer Vigil for Life

All are invited to attend the Austin Prayer Vigil on April 20 beginning with Mass at 7 a.m. at St. Helen Parish in Georgetown. A caravan will proceed to Whole Women’s Health at 8401 N. IH35 to pray the rosary from 8:20 to 9:50 a.m. After the rosary, all will return to St. Helen for closing and fellowship at 10:40 a.m. For more information, contact Bob Christiansen at (512) 255-8551.

Vocation Office

Online pledge to pray for vocations

The World Day of Prayer for Vocations is April 21, 2013. As part of celebrating this day, please visit, a new website where Catholics can pledge to pray for vocations. Members of Invisible Monastery will also receive regular e-newsletters with all sorts of ideas for promoting vocations. This is a great way to encourage year-round prayer in our diocese and build support for your parish vocations ministry.

Hispanic Ministry

Social Teachings

  • The Office of Hispanic Ministry is sponsoring a workshop on Catholic Social Teaching on April 20 at Our Lady of Guadalupe Parish in Austin from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. Bishop Joe Vásquez will be the main speaker. Presentations will be given in Spanish but will be simultaneously interpreted in English. Lunch is $5. To register, contact Daniela Montoya at (512) 949-2413.
  • La Oficina de Ministerio Hispano está patrocinando un taller sobre la Enseñanza Social de la Iglesia el 20 de abril en la Parroquia de Nuestra Señora de Guadalupe en Austin de 8 a.m.-2 p.m. El Obispo José Vásquez será el orador principal. Las presentaciones serán en español pero habrá traducción simultánea en inglés. La comida cuesta $5. Para inscribirse, comuníquese con Daniela Montoya al (512) 949-2413.

Weekly notes

Pope Francis’ prayer intentions

Please consider Pope Francis’ prayer intentions for the month of April:

  • That the public, prayerful celebration of faith may give life to the faithful …
  • Para que la celebración de fe, pública y devota, pueda dar vida a los fieles...
  • That mission churches may be signs and instruments of hope and resurrection …
  • Que las misiones puedan ser signos e instrumentos de esperanza y de resurrección...

Bishop Vásquez’ prayer intentions

Please consider Bishop Vásquez’ prayer intention for the Third Sunday of Easter (April 14):

  • For the grace to recognize Christ in everyone we encounter …
  • Por la gracia de reconocer a Cristo en todas las personas que nos encontramos...

Ethics and Integrity in Ministry (EIM)

Upcoming EIM Basic and Refresher Workshops

EIM Basic and Refresher Workshops are scheduled on a quarterly basis by the EIM Office, coordinating with the EIM site administrator at parishes, schools and other diocesan agencies. Staff of any site wishing to host a workshop must coordinate with their EIM site administrator. The EIM site administrator should make all workshop requests on the Workshop Request Table. Additional workshops will not be added to the EIM workshop calendar unless the EIM office determines a particular need. EIM site administrators may direct inquiries about EIM workshop scheduling to Emily Hurlimann or Colleen Schiller in the EIM Office at (512) 949-2400.

For information about EIM workshops, including how to determine which you need to attend, please click here. Currently scheduled 1½ hour EIM Refresher Workshops and 3-hour EIM Basic Workshops are listed here.


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