The Friday E-Pistle (April 12, 2013)

A message from Bishop Vásquez

Papal portraits

We have received inquiries regarding official portraits of Pope Francis. There is not yet an official portrait of Pope Francis available. Once a portrait becomes available, we will communicate ordering instructions.

Save the date

This year’s Summer Gathering of Priests is June 3-5 in Horseshoe Bay. More information is being mailed to priests.

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.

Year of Faith

At the conclusion of his homily for the feast of the Annunciation, Pope Francis suggested a beautiful prayer that we can pray daily, especially during the Year of Faith: Lord, thank you so much for my faith. Preserve my faith, increase it. May my faith be strong and courageous. And help me in the moments when, like Peter and John, I must make it public.

Like Peter and John, who were often persecuted for their witness and even died for their beliefs, we are called to be public and holy witnesses of our Catholic faith. The USCCB website has a valuable resource which identifies American saints whose faith was “strong and courageous.” Each entry includes a brief description of the life of that saint, a link to a website with more information, and a prayer. This resource is very inspirational and may be used for any adult formation opportunities in the parish.

Reflection question

Gospel Meditation

Please consider using the following question for the Fourth Sunday of Easter (April 21):

  • The image of Jesus the Good Shepherd is one of the most powerful and comforting images in the New Testament. In today’s Gospel Jesus proclaims, “My sheep hear my voice; I know them and they follow me.” In our world today we sometimes respond to other “voices” calling our attention away from Christ. In what ways do you hear the voice of the Shepherd calling you to follow him?
  • La imagen de Jesús el Buen Pastor es una de las imágenes más potentes y reconfortantes en el Nuevo Testamento. En el Evangelio de hoy Jesús proclama: "Mis ovejas escuchan mi voz; yo las conozco y ellas mi siguen." En nuestro mundo actual, a veces respondemos a otras "voces" que llaman nuestra atención lejos de Cristo. ¿De qué manera oyes la voz del Pastor llamándote a seguirlo?

Cedarbrake Catholic Retreat Center

Parables in Luke's Gospel: April 20

Father Angelo Bertini will lead a retreat on 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 we can apply them to our life today. The cost is $35 and includes lunch. For more information, e-mail

Mary, Mother of the Word: May 11

The Dominican Sisters of Mary, Mother of the Eucharist invite mothers and daughters to join them for a Day of Reflection on May 11 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. The day will include Mass, lunch, talks by the sisters, as well as the opportunity to just spend time together. All mothers, daughters, grandmothers, aunts and cousins are welcome to come and learn more about their dignity and vocation as women in the heart of the church. The cost is $35, which includes lunch. Click here to register.

Vocation Office

Vocation Rally

A High School Vocation Rally will be held at St. Vincent de Paul Parish in Austin on April 21 from 4 to 8:30 p.m. Activities include Mass, talks and games with nuns, priests and seminarians. RSVP to Rita Vaglica at (512) 219-5825.

Weekly notes

Bishop Vásquez’ prayer intention

Please consider Bishop Vásquez’ prayer intention for the Fourth Sunday of Easter (April 21):

  • That we may all discern, listen and hear God’s voice when he calls us …
  • Que todos podamos discernir, escuchar y oír la voz de Dios cuando Él nos llama...

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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