The Friday E-Pistle (Aug. 2, 2013)

A message from Bishop Vásquez

Holy Day of Obligation; Offices closed

August 15, the feast of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary, is a holy day of obligation. All diocesan offices will be closed on Aug. 15 in observance of the feast. Diocesan offices will reopen on Aug. 16.

Rural Life Mass

We will celebrate the Rural Life Mass in thanksgiving for this year’s harvest at 6 p.m. on Aug. 13 at Holy Trinity Parish in Corn Hill. All are invited to attend.

Year of Faith

On the U.S. bishops’ website there are new resources available as part of the free downloads for Catechetical Sunday. The first resource is a reflection article by Harry Dudley, assistant director for Certification of Ecclesial Ministry. The article, entitled Enter by the Narrow Gate, explores the image of the narrow gate as a way to reflect on how we have grown in our faith this Year of Faith and “our ongoing journey of faith as God's pilgrim people on earth, the Body of Christ.” Within the article, the author offers reflection questions that may be used to assess our progress in celebrating the Year of Faith as well as how we may continue to learn more about our Catholic faith and share it with others. The article may be downloaded and copied for use with parish groups, particularly those who make plans for parish adult education.


Reflection question

Gospel Meditation

Please consider using the following question for the 19th Sunday in Ordinary Time (Aug. 11):

  • Today’s Gospel contains a number of sayings of Jesus about his coming at the end of time. Jesus uses the image of the servants being prepared for the master’s return, “Blessed are those servants whom the master finds vigilant on his arrival.” The Gospel message calls us to seek what is important and to use our gifts and talents for others. How are you preparing to meet the Lord, either at the end of your life or in the people you meet every day? In what ways are your gifts and talents at the service of others?
  • El Evangelio de hoy contiene un número de frases de Jesús sobre su venida al final de los tiempos. Jesús usa la imagen de los siervos preparándose para el regreso de su maestro, "Benditos sean aquellos siervos a quienes el maestro encuentra vigilantes a su regreso". El mensaje del Evangelio nos llama a buscar aquello que es importante y a usar nuestros dones y talentos para beneficio de los demás. ¿Cómo se está preparando para conocer al Señor, ya sea al final de su vida o en las personas que conoce todos los días? ¿De qué manera están sus dones y talentos puestos al servicio de otros?


Communications Office

Mail to the diocese

Diocesan correspondence should be sent to Diocese of Austin, 6225 Hwy. 290 East, Austin, TX 78723. Using the P.O. Box will cause significant delays in your correspondence arriving to the Pastoral Center. The diocese receives hundreds of pieces of mail a day. When sending something to the diocese, please include a department name or staff member’s name (or description, such as “Parish Quarterly Report”) to assist us in expediting the delivery of mail to the proper office.


Cedarbrake Catholic Retreat Center

Writing as Prayer: Sept. 13-15

Join us for a weekend exploring writing as a tool for fostering intimate prayer Sept. 13-15 at Cedarbrake Catholic Retreat Center. We will use guided writing exercises and visual and musical aids to invite participants into spiritual conversations with the sacred. Music minister Anne Klock, flutist, will provide the sacred music for this retreat. NO writing skills are required, only a willingness to ponder and listen — with pen in hand. The weekend will be led by author Maria Ruiz Scaperlanda. This retreat is open to both men and women. Cost is $155 for a shared room and $185 for a private room. Call (254) 780-2436 for more information. Click here to register.

‘The Shack’ with Sr. Lois Dideon: Oct. 4- 6

Meet Me at the Shack ~ Love, Papa.” So you’ve read The Shack. Would you like to come and experience it and talk about it? Have you wondered why God put this book in your hands? Would you like to spend the weekend with others who have been touched and challenged by The Shack, reflecting, unpacking, sharing and experiencing God? The weekend retreat at Cedarbrake Catholic Retreat Center, from Oct. 4-6, will include presentations, time for discussion, guided imagery and relaxing beauty. Click here to register.


Worship Office

Liturgy information and communications

If you are involved in your parish as an RCIA director, Adult Faith Formation leader, liturgist or liturgy coordinator, music director or a parish musician and would like to receive updates from the Office of Worship, please send your name, parish, title, and e-mail address to Kathy Thomas in the diocesan Office of Worship.


Stewardship Office

Diocesan census

Help us update your contact information in our database at the Diocese of Austin. Have you recently moved? Has your e-mail address changed? Have you recently been married? Have you moved to a different parish? Or, have there been any new additions to your family? If so, you can update your contact information by going to our website or you can contact the Stewardship and Development Office at the Diocese of Austin at (512) 949-2400.


Weekly notes

Pope Francis’ prayer intentions

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

  • That parents and teachers may help the new generation to grow in upright conscience and life ...
  • Que padres y maestros puedan ayudar a la nueva generación a crecer con conciencia y vida rectas...
  • That the Church in Africa, faithfully proclaiming the Gospel, may promote peace and justice ...
  • Que la Iglesia en África, proclamando fielmente el Evangelio, pueda promover paz y justicia...

Bishop Vásquez’ prayer intention

Please consider Bishop Vásquez’ prayer intention for the 19th Sunday in Ordinary Time (Aug. 11):

  • That each of us will do what is necessary to be prepared for the Lord’s return ...
  • Que cada uno de nosotros haga lo que es necesario para prepararnos para el regreso del Señor...


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.



Department Categorization: