The Friday E-Pistle (Jan. 27, 2017)

A message from Bishop Vásquez

Presbyteral Council

The Presbyteral Council of the Diocese of Austin represents the priests of the diocese and assists Bishop Vásquez in the governance of the diocese to promote the pastoral good of the people of God.  The following members have been elected to represent their respective deaneries on the council for three years beginning January 1, 2017 (unless otherwise noted):

  • Austin Central  – Very Rev. Tim Nolt
  • Bastrop/Lockhart – Rev. Pius T. Mathew
  • Brenham/La Grange – Very Rev. Nock Russell
  • Killeen/Temple – Rev. Christopher Downey (re-elected)
  • San Marcos – Rev. Wade Russell (one-year term)

Additionally, Bishop Vásquez appointed the following priests to serve in the indicated positions on the Council, representing the priests within these categories for the indicated terms:

  • Ministry Member – Very Rev. Daniel Liu – 2017-2019
  • International Member – Rev. Ramiro Tarazona – 2017-2019
  • Appointed Member – Rev. Basil Aguzie, MSP – 2017-2019
  • Appointed Member – Rev. Boniface Onjefu Omale - 2017

On January 24, the following priests were elected as officers of the Presbyteral Council for a one-year term:

  • Chairman – Rev. James Misko
  • Vice Chairman – Very Rev. William Wack, CSC
  • Secretary – Rev. John Guzaldo

Parish update

Christ the King Parish in Belton has a new fax number of (254) 831-4005. Please update your records.


Reflection question

Gospel meditation

Consider using the following meditation for the Sixth Sunday in Ordinary Time (Feb. 12):

  • Today Jesus reminds us that following the letter of the law may give us a false sense of holiness. Jesus drills down to the root of the Law in several examples. While we may have not murdered anyone, Jesus asks if we have acted in anger toward others. Do we perceive others as objects of gratification rather than dignified persons created in the image of God? Are others treated as commodities or servants rather than one to whom I am pledged or called to serve? What are the motives behind our actions? Are they good and holy? We are not called to simply observe the letter of the Law but the spirit too.
  • Hoy Jesús nos recuerda que el seguir la ley nos puede dar un falso sentido de santidad. Jesús siembra la raíz de la Ley por medio de varios ejemplos. Aunque puede que no hayamos matado a nadie, Jesús nos pregunta si hemos actuado con enojo hacia otros ¿Percibimos a otros como objetos de gratificación más que como personas con dignidad creadas a imagen de Dios? ¿Son los demás usados como mercancías o sirvientes en lugar de como aquellos a quienes estoy comprometido o llamado a servir? ¿Cuáles son los motivos detrás de nuestras acciones? ¿Son buenos y santos? No estamos llamados a simplemente observar el documento de la Ley pero al espíritu también. 


Stewardship and Development

Catholic Services Appeal update

  • Thank you for your continued support and generosity to the Catholic Services Appeal. To date, we have received pledges from almost 19,000 families totaling almost $5.4 million. Parishioners are encouraged to generously support the CSA.
  • The third mailing was sent last week to donors who have not yet renewed their pledge. The calling program will begin on Feb. 20.
  • Current parish goal reports are available on the diocesan website.
  • Tax Letters: Tax letters for 2016 donations were mailed to those donors who have contributed $250 or more. Individual tax letters can be requested by contacting the Stewardship & Development Office at (512) 949-2400.


Black Catholics


Courageous Conversation on Racism

The next Courageous Conversation on Racism will be Jan. 30 at 6:30 p.m. at Holy Cross Parish in Austin. Representatives from Mayor Steve Adler’s Office, Ashton Cumberbatch, Alba Sereno and Kazique Prince, will discuss their efforts to collaborate with community partners to dismantle institutional racism and systemic inequities through the City of Austin Equity Office and the Task Force on Institutional Racism. All are invited to attend.


Vocation Office

Discernment dinner for high school-aged young men

High school men are invited to a Discernment Dinner on Feb. 1 at 7 p.m. at the rectory of St. William Parish at 1105 Deer Run in Round Rock. Any young man of high school age open to discovering God’s will in his life is welcome. The evening includes dinner, prayer, fellowship and conversation about the priesthood, discernment, prayer and virtue. For more information, contact Father Froy Jerez at (512) 255-4473.


Weekly notes

Bishop Vásquez’ prayer request

Please consider Bishop Vásquez’ prayer request for the Sixth Sunday Ordinary Time (Feb. 12):

  • That we who claim the title Christian may manifest God’s holiness through actions motivated by love and service, we pray …
  • Por que aquellos que se nombran Cristianos puedan manifestar la santidad de Dios a través de acciones motivadas por el amor y el servicio, oremos...

Relics of St. Anthony of Padua

From Feb. 10-19, relics of St. Anthony of Padua will be available for veneration in churches in San Marcos, Austin, Bryan, Waco and Belton. These fliers can be used to promote the tour of relics. The schedule is as follows:

  • Feb. 10: St. John the Evangelist Parish in San Marcos - Veneration begins at 3 p.m., Mass begins at 7 p.m.
  • Feb. 11: St. Mary Cathedral in Austin - Veneration is from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. and from 4 to 7 p.m. Mass begins at noon; Vigil Mass begins at 5:30 p.m.
  • Feb. 12: St. Mary Cathedral in Austin - Veneration before and after each Mass. Masses begin at 8 a.m., 9:30 a.m., noon, 1:45 p.m., 3:30 p.m. and 5:30 p.m.
  • Feb. 13: St. Anthony Parish in Bryan - Veneration begins at 3 p.m.; Mass begins at 6:30 p.m.
  • Feb. 14: St. Francis on the Brazos Parish in Waco - Veneration begins at 3 p.m.; Mass begins at 7 p.m.
  • Feb. 15: Sacred Heart Parish in Austin - Veneration begins at 3 p.m.; Mass begins at 6:30 p.m.
  • Feb. 16: Holy Vietnamese Martyrs Parish in Austin - Veneration begins at 11:30 a.m.; Masses begin at noon and 6:30 p.m.
  • Feb. 17: Christ the King Parish in Belton - Veneration will be held from 3 to 7 p.m.; Mass begins at 5 p.m.
  • Feb. 18: Our Lady’s Maronite Catholic Church in Austin - Veneration begins at 12:30 p.m.; Vigil Mass begins at 5 p.m. followed by short period of veneration.
  • Feb. 19: Our Lady of Guadalupe Parish in Austin - All Masses will begin with veneration. Masses begin at 7:45 a.m., 9:45 a.m., 11:30 a.m. and 6 p.m.


Ethics and Integrity in Ministry

EIM Workshop

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 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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