The Friday E-Pistle (July 8, 2016)

A message from Bishop Vásquez

Official appointments

Parochial Vicars

  • Deacon Payden Blevins, parochial vicar at San José Parish in Austin, effective July 18, 2016.
  • Deacon Froy Jerez, parochial vicar at St. William Parish in Round Rock, effective July 18, 2016.
  • Deacon Amado Ramos, parochial vicar at Santa Cruz Parish in Buda, effective July 18, 2016.

Prior to their returning to Rome for post-graduate studies in the fall,

  • Deacon Sean DeWitt, parochial vicar at San José Parish in Austin, effective July 18, 2016.
  • Deacon Greg Gerhart, parochial vicar at St. John the Evangelist Parish in San Marcos, effective July 18, 2016.


  • Deacon Dennis Egan has been granted retirement status, effective July 10, 2016.
  • Deacon Dwight Mahoney has been granted retirement status, effective July 31, 2016.
  • Deacon Patrick Venglar has been granted retirement status, effective July 31, 2016.

Statement on recent violence

Bishop Joe S. Vásquez, of the Diocese of Austin, issued the following statement on Friday, July 8:

Last night, during a peaceful protest related to the recent shootings and deaths of Alton Sterling in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, and Philando Castile in Falcon Heights, Minnesota, 11 law enforcement officers were shot, five of whom were killed. Our hearts ache for the families of the young men who were killed in Louisiana and Minnesota, and our hearts also ache for the police officers who were wounded and the families of the police officers who were killed in Dallas.

As Christians, we hold fast to our faith in Jesus Christ who broke down the dividing wall of hostility and division between us (Eph 2:14). Because we believe every life is sacred and every person is precious, we must continue to pray for the conversion of all people to safeguard the inherent dignity and value of every human life.

We recognize the frustration and anger people feel—particularly those who are marginalized because of race or ethnicity—as well as the distress and anger stemming from assaults against law enforcement officers. We must work to unite and heal our communities.  Let us join together and pray for the families of those who have suffered or have been affected by violence, hatred and oppression.

Anoche, durante una protesta pacífica relacionada con los recientes tiroteos y las muertes de Alton Sterling en Baton Rouge, Lousiana, y Philanso Castile en Falcon Heights, Minnesota, 11 oficiales de la policía fueron balaceados, cinco los cuales murieron.  Nuestros corazones sienten dolor por las familias de los jóvenes que fueron matados en Louisiana y Minnesota, nuestros corazones también sienten dolor por los oficiales de policía que fueron lastimados y por las familias de los oficiales de policía que fueron matados en Dallas.

Como cristianos, nos aferramos a nuestra fe en Jesucristo, Él ha destruido el muro de separación, el odio, y de los dos pueblos ha hecho uno solo (Ef 2:14).  Porque creemos que cada vida es sagrada y cada persona es preciosa, hay que seguir orando por la conversión de todas las personas para proteger la dignidad intrínseca y el valor de toda vida humana.

Reconocemos la frustración y la ira que siente el pueblo, particularmente aquellos que son marginados por motivos de raza u origen étnico-así como la angustia y la ira derivada de los ataques contra oficiales de policía. Tenemos que trabajar para unir y sanar nuestras comunidades. Unámonos y oremos por las familias de las personas que han sufrido o han sido afectadas por la violencia, el odio y la opresión.


Reflection question

Gospel meditation

Consider using the following meditation for the 17th Sunday in Ordinary Time (July 24):

  • Jesus invites us to be persistent in prayer and receptive to what God gives us. We are to ask, seek and knock. Prayer is relationship with God, and it is the kingdom becoming present in us. Does our prayer include time to discern what to ask for? Does our prayer include seeking the presence of God? Does our prayer allow time to knock and await the opening of God’s kingdom in us?
  • Jesús nos invita a ser persistentes en la oración y receptivos a lo que Dios nos da. Debemos pedir, buscar y llamar a la puerta. La oración es una relación con Dios, y es el reino haciéndose presente dentro de nosotros. ¿Incluye nuestra oración tiempo para saber qué pedir? ¿Incluye nuestra oración la búsqueda de la presencia de Dios? ¿Permite nuestra oración tiempo para llamar a la puerta y esperar la apertura del reino de Dios en nosotros?


Stewardship and Development

PDS training

Basic and advanced training on Church Office will be offered at the diocesan Pastoral Center in Austin on July 26. For more information and to register, visit


Weekly notes

Pope Francis’ prayer request

Please consider Pope Francis’ prayer request for the month of July:

  • That indigenous peoples, whose identity and very existence are threatened, will be shown due respect …
  • Para que sean respetados los pueblos indígenas amenazados en su identidad y hasta en su misma existencia …
  • That the Church in Latin America and the Caribbean, by means of her mission to the continent, may announce the Gospel with renewed vigor and enthusiasm …
  • Para que la Iglesia de América Latina y el Caribe, a través de la misión continental, anuncie con ímpetu y entusiasmo renovado el Evangelio …

Bishop Vásquez’ prayer request

Please consider Bishop Vásquez’ prayer request for the 17th Sunday in Ordinary Time (July 24):

  • That in our prayer we would allow ourselves time to ask God’s desire, to seek God’s presence, and to knock that the gates of God’s Kingdom may be open in our hearts, we pray…
  • Que en nuestra oración nos permitamos tiempo para pedir el deseo de Dios, buscar la presencia de Dios, y tocar a la puerta para que las puertas del Reino de Dios puedan estar abiertas en nuestros corazones...


Join the diocese in welcoming Andrea Bizzanelli to the Office of Stewardship and Development as the new Associate Director of Catholic School Development and Marketing.


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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