The Friday E-Pistle (Feb. 6, 2015)

A message from Bishop Vásquez

Pastoral Plan Update

Last January, we began the process to develop a new Pastoral Plan by hosting listening sessions, focus groups and surveys. We are now ready for the next step, which is to design an Implementation Plan. To do this, we are inviting all priests, deacons, religious and lay people to attend a consultation session. All sessions will be offered in English and Spanish and will be held from 7 to 9 p.m. as follows:

  • Monday, March 23 - St. Joseph Parish in Bryan
  • Thursday, March 26 – Pastoral Center in Austin
  • Monday, April 13 - St. John the Evangelist Parish in Marble Falls
  • Thursday, April 16 – St. John the Evangelist Parish in San Marcos
  • Thursday, April 23 – St. Louis Catholic School in Waco

To have enough handouts and refreshments, please register, if you plan to attend.


A message from Bishop-elect Garcia

Mass of Episcopal Ordination

Thank you for your offers of congratulations and prayers as I prepare for my ordination as auxiliary bishop of Austin. I am sincerely grateful to our Holy Father, Pope Francis, for this appointment.

Invitations to the Mass of Episcopal Ordination have been mailed. The Mass will be on March 3 at 2 p.m. at St. William Parish in Round Rock. Unfortunately, because of space limitations this will be a ticketed event. Please be sure to RSVP as tickets will only be issued to those who RSVP.


Reflection question

Gospel Meditation

Please consider using the following meditation for the First Sunday of Lent (Feb. 22):

  • In today’s Gospel, Jesus tells us to “Repent, and believe in the gospel.” How long has it been since your last confession? Lent is the perfect time to seek out this sacrament. Why not make plans to go before Holy Week?
  • En el Evangelio de hoy, Jesús nos dice "Arrepiéntete y cree en el Evangelio". ¿Cuánto tiempo ha pasado desde su última confesión? La Cuaresma es el tiempo perfecto para buscar este sacramento ¿Por qué no hacer planes para confesarse antes de la Semana Santa?


Worship Office

Lenten Overview

The Worship Office has prepared a resource guide for Lent for all those who help prepare the parish liturgies.

Easter Vigil

According to the Roman Missal, “the entire celebration of the Easter Vigil must take place during the night, so that it begins after nightfall.” Since sunset will take place at 7:52 p.m. on April 4, all Easter Vigil Masses in the Diocese of Austin cannot begin before 8:15 p.m. Only one vigil liturgy may be celebrated.


Vocation Office

Project Andrew

Discovering one’s vocation is about meeting a person: the person of Christ. Project Andrew is for Catholic men (ages 16-45) interested in learning more about discernment, the priesthood and seminary life. Join us for prayer, testimonials by priests and seminarians, Mass and lunch with Bishop Vásquez on Saturday, Feb. 14 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at St. Mary Cathedral in Austin. Register at


Pro-Life Activities and Chaste Living

Culture of Life Celebratory Dinner

A Culture of Life has blossomed within Central Texas because of the efforts of the volunteers within the Diocese of Austin. Let us break bread together as we recognize parishes and their works to extend the hand of Christ to God’s people. Join us at Culture of Life Celebratory Dinner on Feb. 12 at St. Helen Parish for dinner and keynote speaker Chad Judice, an award winning author who will share his story of faith, strength and love of the gift of his son. Registration will begin at 6 p.m. followed by dinner and program at 6:30 p.m. View to purchase tickets or contact the Office of Pro-Life Activities and Chaste Living at (512) 949-2486 or e-mail Yvonne Saldaña for more information.


Finance Office

Special Collection money due

Please send funds collected for the Catholic Campaign for Human Development Special Collection, taken up Nov. 22-23, 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 Life Office

Men’s Conference

The third annual Men’s Conference will be Feb. 21 from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. at St. William Parish in Round Rock. Jesse Romero is one of the keynote speakers. Tickets are $39 and are available for purchase at The event is sponsored by the Central Texas Fellowship of Catholic Men and The Knights of Columbus.


Weekly notes

Pope Francis prayer intentions

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

  • That prisoners, especially the young, may be able to rebuild lives of dignity ...
  • Para que los encarcelados, en especial los jóvenes, tengan la posibilidad de reconstruir una vida digna ...
  • That married people who are separated may find welcome and support in the Christian community ...
  • Para que los cónyuges que se han separado encuentren acogida y apoyo en la comunidad cristiana ...

Bishop Vásquez’ prayer intention

Please consider Bishop Vásquez' prayer intention for the First Sunday of Lent (Feb. 22):

  • For missionaries who fearlessly proclaim the Gospel in all corners of the world …
  • Por los misioneros quienes valerosamente proclaman el Evangelio en todos los rincones del mundo ...


Ethics and Integrity in Ministry

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 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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