The Friday E-Pistle (Oct. 9, 2015)

A message from Bishop Vásquez

NCCW Sunday

This weekend the Austin Diocesan Council of Catholic Women will promote its organization, as well as the National Council of Catholic Women (NCCW), in parishes throughout the Diocese of Austin. Parishioners should look for their promotional materials at Masses. The NCCW and its affiliates support, empower and educate all Catholic women in spirituality, leadership and service. NCCW programs respond with Gospel values to the needs of the Church today and society in the modern world. This year the NCCW is celebrating 95 years of service.

Catholic Services Appeal

October 19-20 is Announcement Weekend for the Catholic Services Appeal. Parishes are encouraged to announce the appeal and tell parishioners that every Catholic family will receive a letter in the mail from Bishop Vásquez about the CSA at the end of October. Parishes are also encouraged to use the campaign materials to build awareness of the CSA. All of the materials are available on the diocesan website.


Reflection question

Gospel Meditation

Please consider using the following meditation for the 30th Sunday in Ordinary Time (Oct. 25):

  • “Jesus, son of David, have pity on me!” Bartimaeus is persistent in his call and springs up in response to Jesus’ call. How persistent am I in prayer? Prayer is essential to increase our relationship with God. Do I cry out for the Lord’s assistance? How eager am I to accept? How frequently do I allow myself to be God’s means of helping others?
  • "¡Jesús, hijo de David, ten piedad de mí!" Bartimeo es persistente en su llamado y se levanta inmediatamente en respuesta al llamado de Jesús ¿Qué tan persistente soy yo en la oración? La oración es esencial para incrementar nuestra relación con Dios ¿Pido la asistencia del Señor? ¿Qué tan ansioso estoy por aceptar? ¿Qué tan frecuentemente me permito ser el medio por el cual Dios ayuda a otros?


Stewardship and Development

PDS Training

The diocese will offer beginner and advanced PDS training sessions on a quarterly basis at the Pastoral Center in Austin beginning Oct. 27. There will be a morning session from 9 a.m. to noon for new users or for those that would like to review the basics. The afternoon session from 1 to 4 p.m. will cover advanced reporting on families, members, contributions, exports and financials. Participants can attend these sessions one at a time or take both in one day. The schedule is as follows:

  • Oct. 27, 2015
  • Jan. 26, 2016
  • April 4, 2016
  • July 7, 2016

Click here to register for the sessions. If you have any questions, contact Lisa Rosenberger at (512) 949-2450.

PDS Support

A reminder to our parishes regarding questions that may arise while working in the database. Please utilize the PDS Support line at (877) 455-9300. The monthly fees for PDS include this support.


Evangelization, Catechesis and Family Life

Families Fully Alive

The visit of Pope Francis to the U.S. and his participation at the World Meeting of Families in Philadelphia provided much excitement for American Catholics. The diocesan office of Evangelization, Catechesis, and Family life is sponsoring its own local version of the World Meeting of Families on Nov. 14 at Santa Cruz Parish in Buda. The Celebration of Families Fully Alive Day of Reflection will feature a keynote address by Schoenstatt Father Jesús Ferras, presentations in words and pictures by individuals from the Diocese of Austin who attended the World Meeting, live music, a family Mass, activities for children, publisher and vendor booths, and lunch. Presentations will be offered both in English and in Spanish. Online registration is open until Nov. 9.


Cedarbrake Catholic Retreat Center

Upcoming retreats

  • “Called, Gifted and Sent!” a retreat with Ursuline Sister Bridget Haase, will be held Oct. 23-25 at Cedarbrake Catholic Retreat Center in Belton. The retreat will reflect on how our calling to be a child of God immerses us in the sacred of everyday life, enkindles us with the fire of love and anoints us for service to the world. Sister Bridget is from Boston and has hosted a talk show on EWTN for many years. Cost is $195 for a private room, $160 per person for a shared room and $85 for commuters. For more information or to register, contact or call (254) 780-2436.
  • El Espíritu Santo y la Divina Misericordia serán los temas de un retiro en español que se llevará a cabo el 24 de octubre en el Centro de Retiros Católico Cedarbrake en Belton. El retiro explicará cómo una devoción al Espíritu Santo puede ayudarnos a vivir una vida en la misericordia de Jesucristo en preparación para el  año entrante de la Misericordia. El costo es de $25. Por favor regístrese hasta el 19 de octubre, o llame al (254) 780-2436 para mayor información.


Weekly notes

Bishop Vásquez’ prayer intention

Please consider Bishop Vásquez’ prayer intention for the 30th Sunday in Ordinary Time (Oct. 25):

  • May we confidently and constantly cry out to the Lord for assistance while we strive to assist others in their need, we pray…
  • Por que confiada y constantemente pidamos al Señor su asistencia mientras nos esforzamos por asistir a otros necesitados, oremos al señor...


Ethics and Integrity in Ministry

EIM Basic and Refresher Workshops

Click here to login to your EIM account in order to find the workshop schedule and Sign Up for a Workshop (bottom right of your account page). Instructions are provided in case you do not recall how to login to 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. For general information about EIM workshops, please click here.

EIM Basic and Refresher Workshops are scheduled 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 should coordinate with their EIM site administrator. If the site administrator has arranged workshop details with a facilitator, then an email to the EIM office with those details is sufficient to request a workshop; otherwise workshop requests should be made by the site administrator using the Workshop Request Table. EIM site administrators may direct inquiries about EIM workshop scheduling to Emily Hurlimann in the EIM Office at (512) 949-2447.

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