The Friday E-Pistle (April 25, 2014)

A message from Bishop Vásquez

Last weekend to complete the Pastoral Plan Survey

With the Catholic Church’s celebration of the canonization of Blessed John XXIII, we remember that the documents of the Second Vatican Council called for a greater participation of the laity in the life of the Church. In the 1960s, a local bishop would have made decisions about the diocese with the consultation of only a few of his priests. Today we have the privilege of making our voices heard. Thank you to all those who filled out the surveys, either online or a paper copy. We have received more than 3,000 responses. The online survey closes April 27 at midnight.

Special Collection: April 26-27

All parishes in the Diocese of Austin are to take up a special collection the weekend of April 26-27 for Seminarians and Priest Education and Formation. The following announcement should be read before all Masses that weekend:

  • To minister to a rapidly growing population, the Diocese of Austin must ensure it has an ample number of priests to celebrate the sacraments, preach God’s word and guide us on our journey with Christ. To ensure our priests are well-prepared, a man in formation will pursue a quality education in philosophy, theology and pastoral care. Seminarian education and formation in the Diocese of Austin can take up to nine years. Financial impediments should never prevent men from responding to God’s call to the priesthood. Most financial support for priests and seminarians is made available from the Catholic Services Appeal and a Seminarian Endowment in the Catholic Foundation, but the needs are far greater than our annual appeal can support. This special collection provides additional support for this very important effort. Please be generous in your support of this most worthy cause.
  • Para atender a una población en rápido crecimiento, la Diócesis de Austin debe asegurarse de que cuenta con un amplio número de sacerdotes para celebrar los sacramentos, predicar la palabra de Dios y nos guíe en nuestro camino con Cristo. Para asegurar que nuestros sacerdotes están bien preparados, un hombre en la formación llevará a cabo una educación de calidad en la filosofía, la teología y la pastoral. La educación y la formación de seminaristas en la Diócesis de Austin puede tardar hasta nueve años. Impedimentos financieros no debe impedir que los hombres responden al llamado de Dios al sacerdocio. La mayoría de la ayuda financiera para los sacerdotes y seminaristas, con cargo a la Apelación de Servicios católica y una dotación seminarista en la Fundación Católica, pero las necesidades son mucho mayores que nuestro llamamiento anual puede soportar. Esta colección especial proporciona apoyo adicional a este esfuerzo muy importante. Por favor, sean generosos en su apoyo a esta causa más digna.

Solemnity of the Ascension

In the Diocese of Austin, the Solemnity of the Ascension of the Lord is transferred to the seventh Sunday of Easter, one week before Pentecost Sunday. The Vatican, at the request of the bishops of the U.S., granted permission for the date change, giving ecclesiastical provinces in the U.S. the authority to make the transfer. Therefore, the Solemnity of the Ascension will be celebrated on June 1, 2014.


Reflection question

Gospel Meditation

Please consider using the following meditation for the Fourth Sunday of Easter (May 11):

  • We are the sheep in today’s Gospel parable. Jesus says that he is the gatekeeper and that all who come through him will be saved. Do you know anyone who has fallen away from Catholicism or even Christianity? Take a few minutes to pray for them.
  • Nosotros somos las ovejas en la parábola del Evangelio de hoy. Jesús dice que Él es el cuidador de la puerta y todos aquellos que pasan a través de Él serán salvados ¿Conoce a alguien que se ha alejado del Catolicismo o incluso de la Cristiandad? Tómese unos momentos para orar por ellos.


Pro-Life Activities and Chaste Living

Project Rachel Angels needed

Project Rachel Angels are trained volunteers who accompany women and men suffering from an abortion on the road to healing. There is a need for angels across the diocese. The Office of Pro-Life Activities and Chaste Living offers free training to those interested in helping with the Project Rachel ministry. For more information, contact Briana Feiler at (512) 949-2488.

Annunciation Maternity Home Banquet

The annual Annunciation Maternity Home Banquet is May 8 at St. Helen Parish in Georgetown. Registration and silent auction begin at 6 p.m. Live auction, dinner and program begin at 7 p.m. Sponsorships include tables seating eight, and are available at the following levels: Faith ($300), Hope ($500), Love ($1,000). Individual tickets are $40 and couples are $75. Auction items are needed. Online registration and more information can be found at or by calling (512) 864-7755.

Mother’s Day Carnations

Parishes that have ordered Mother’s Day Carnations can pick up their orders on Friday, May 9 from noon to 5 p.m. at the diocesan Pastoral Center in Austin. If you have any questions, contact Yvonne Saldaña at (512) 949-2486.


Worship Office

Diocesan Adult Confirmation

The next Diocesan Adult Confirmation will be celebrated May 10 at 10:30 a.m. at St. John Vianney Parish in Round Rock.  Use this online form to register parish candidates. Registrations are due today, April 25.


Finance Office

Special Collection money due

Please send funds collected for the Catholic Higher Education Special Collection, taken up Feb. 8-9, to the diocesan Finance Office as soon as possible. Send checks to Finance Office, Diocese of Austin, 6225 Highway 290 East, Austin, TX 78723.


Family Counseling Office

Group counseling available

The Diocese of Austin Family Counseling Office will offer group counseling programs beginning June 2014. They include: Divorce Support for Adults, Divorce Support for Kids, Bereavement Support and a brand-new Marriage Enrichment group for couples looking to strengthen their relationship. All groups are conducted in English, with the exception of the Bereavement Support Group, which will be offered in English and Spanish. All groups will meet weekly for six to eight weeks, at a low cost. Sliding scale fees will be available for qualifying families. To enroll in a group, or to get more information, contact Counseling Supervisor Britt Holan at (512) 651-6152. Please note that our office has moved to 1625 Rutherford Lane, Austin, TX 78754. General inquiries about services can be made at (512) 651-6150.


Cedarbrake Catholic Retreat Center

May 23-25: Healing Hearts Retreat

Healing Hearts is a weekend retreat designed for women who have suffered any kind of sexual trauma. The retreat at Cedarbrake Catholic Retreat Center in Belton begins Friday at 6:30 p.m. and concludes at 11:30 a.m. on Sunday. The cost for the retreat is $135 and includes two nights, linens, materials and meals. The next retreat will be May 23-25, 2014.  Please call (254) 780-2436 and speak with Beverly Collin to discuss registration.


EIM Office

Facilitator training for EIM workshop for adults

The Office of Ethics and Integrity in Ministry will train new facilitators for the EIM workshops (Basic and Refresher) on June 14 (note – this was originally announced as a May training but has been rescheduled to June). Those interested in serving a facilitator should submit this completed application, along with the requested information, to the EIM Office by May 30. Please contact Emily Hurlimann at (512) 949-2447 with questions. Once the application is received and reviewed by the EIM Office, applicants will be contacted with details of the training session.


Weekly notes

Bishop Vásquez’ prayer intention

Please consider Bishop Vásquez’ prayer intention for the Fourth Sunday of Easter (May 11):

  • For all mothers, living and deceased …
  • Por todas las madres, vivas y fallecidas...

Blessings and congratulations to …

The following priests on the anniversary of their ordination during the month of May: Rev. Sushil Ekka, IMS, May 4, 1996; Rev. Kirby Garner, May 7, 1977; Rev. Don Loftin, May 7, 1994; Rev. Gonzalo Ferrer, May 9, 1981; Rev. John Calgaro, OFM Conv., May 11, 1974; Rev. Angelo Bertini, May 12, 1973; Rev. Jayaraju Polishetty , May 12, 2009; Rev. Charles Kullmann, CSP, May 13, 1978; Rev. Edward Nowak, CSP, May 13, 1989; Rev. Walter Dhanwar IMS, May 13, 1991; Msgr. Joe Van Anh Nguyen, May 14, 1968; Rev. James E. Robertson, May 14, 1977; Rev. Greg Romanski, May 14, 1977; Rev. Vincent Romuald, SRC, May 15, 1999; Msgr. Isidore Rozycki, May 18, 1968; Rev. Albert Ruiz, May 19, 1973; Rev. Ruben Patino, CSP, May 19, 1979; Rev. Robert M. Cary, CSP, May 19, 1984; Rev. Ranjan Cletus, May 19, 1984; Rev. René Constanza CSP, May 19, 2012; Rev. Fred Chalupa, May 20, 1973; Rev. Rakshaganathan Selvaraj, May 20, 1994; Rev. Jamie Baca, CSP, May 20, 2006; Rev. James Evans, May 21, 1994; Rev. Edward C. Koharchik, CSP, May 21, 2005; Msgr. Louis Pavlicek, May 22, 1971; Rev. Everett Trebtoske, May 23, 1959; Msgr. Boli Zientek, May 23, 1959; Rev. Thomas Chamberlain, May 23, 1970; Rev. David Williams, JD, JCL, May 23, 1998; Msgr. Benedict Zientek, May 24, 1958; Rev. Keith Koehl, May 24, 1997; Rev. Ray Dowling, May 25, 1961; Msgr. John Malinowski, May 25, 1963; Msgr. Harry Mazurkiewicz, May 26, 1951; Msgr. Louis Wozniak, May 26, 1951; Bishop John McCarthy, May 26, 1956; Rev. J.C. Cain, OMI, May 27, 1989; Rev. Hilario Guajardo, May 27, 1989; Msgr. Lonnie Urban, May 27, 1967; Msgr. Joseph Schmitt, May 28, 1955; Rev. Thomas Hanus, May 28, 1966; Rev. Edwin Kagoo, May 28, 1980; Very Rev. Daniel E. Garcia, May 28, 1988; Rev. Dariusz Ziebowicz, SDS, May 28, 1988; Msgr. Frank S. Miller, May 29, 1954; Rev. Justin Udomah, May 29, 1993; Rev. Adrian Chishimba, May 29, 2010; Rev. Cesar Charlie Garza, May 29, 2010; Rev. Mark Hamlet, May 29, 2010; Rev. Jungtack John Kim, May 29, 2010; Rev. Matthew Kinney, May 29, 2010; Rev. Wade Russell, May 29, 2010; Rev. Steve Sauser, May 29, 2010; Rev. Bernard Mahoney, May 30, 1953; Msgr. Elmer Holtman, May 30, 1964; Rev. Peter McCabe, May 30, 1970; Rev. John Boiko, May 30, 1987; Very Rev. Edward Karasek, May 30, 1987; Rev. Sang Yil Lee, May 30, 1992; Msgr. Victor Goertz, May 31, 1952; Rev. Leonard Leddy, May 31, 1959; Rev. Walter Matus, May 31, 1970; Very Rev. Juan Carlos Lopez, May 31, 2003; Rev. Bradford Hernandez, May 31, 2008; Rev. Daniel Liu, May 31, 2008; and Rev. Nock Russell, May 31, 2008.


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 general information about EIM Basic or Refresher workshops, please click here.

Anyone needing an EIM workshop will sign up online through their EIM account. The sign-up process is explained once you access your EIM account; please contact your parish or Catholic school EIM site administrator if you need assistance or if you do not have Internet access.

Click here to login to your EIM account in order to find the schedule of EIM workshops and to sign up. Instructions are provided in case you do not recall how to login to your EIM account.

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