Wednesday, February 12, 2014

BIG News in Austin, Council Wrap, St. Aug's Video, and More


Council Revives 'Tenacious' Church

Bishop Doyle delivered a Council address declaring, "We are a tenacious diocese that claims a tenacious God." Click above to read a wrap-up of Council including links to election results and photos.

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St. Vincent's House Sends Thanks to the Diocese for Donations
Dearest members and delegates of the Episcopal Diocese of Texas 165th Council, St. Vincent’s House gratefully acknowledges with heartfelt appreciation your extraordinary outpouring of love and support. We, the staff, clients and board of St. Vincent’s House, give thanks for YOU, for your contributions of food and for the generous offertory donations you gave to ‘your’ ministry here in Galveston at the opening worship service. Your generous donation enables us to continue providing an 'Oasis of Hope' for all those who come through our doors. Thank you for helping us provide hope for a better tomorrow."

Deadline Approaching for Intermediate and Junior High Retreats
The Intermediate and Jr. High Retreats are quickly approaching from February 21-23 at Camp Allen! The deadline to register is February 18. These retreats are designed to draw diocesan youth together for a weekend of relaxation, fun and worship. The Intermediate Retreat is for 4th-6th graders and the Jr. High is for 6th-8th graders. Scholarships are always available. For more information and registration, click here.

Free Newcomer Ministry Training Available in Austin & Houston in March
Inviting, welcoming, and connecting persons in our congregations are vital steps for building healthy, vibrant, and growing churches. The Newcomer Ministry Project (soon to be published by Forward Movement) has brought new energy and spirit to congregations, and sustained real growth in membership where the essentials of INVITE-WELCOME-CONNECT are being followed. Register for one of the following newcomer trainings by emailing Mary Parmer at There is no charge and lunch will be provided.

Monday, March 10 – 9 a.m.-3 p.m. | Christ Church Cathedral, Houston

Wednesday, March 12 – 9 a.m.-3 p.m. | Seminary of the Southwest, Austin 

Southwest Showdown BBQ in Austin Benefits Episcopal Relief & Development
The 2014 Southwest Showdown Charity Barbecue Competition will be held on Saturday, February 22 on the campus of the Seminary of the Southwest. Click here to learn more.

The Rev. Carter Heyward, One of the First Female Priests, Speaking at CCC
The Rev. Carter Heyward, Ph.D., will speak at a forum on "Rethinking Christianity in a Multi-Faith World" at Christ Church Cathedral, February 22. The forum will feature a Muslim, Budhist and Jewish woman's perspective as well. Heyward is one of the “Philadelphia Eleven” who opened the door to women’s ordination in the Episcopal Church. Click here to learn more.

Episcopal-Lutheran Meet & Greet Luncheon in Houston, February 20
Our Lutheran (ELCA) ecumenical partners have invited all Houston-area Episcopal clergy and heads of congregations to a luncheon on February 20, noon-1:30 p.m. at Salem Evangelical Lutheran Church, 4930 West Bellfort, in Houston. Bishops Doyle and Fisher and ELCA Bishop Michael Rinehart will each tell of their respective judicatories, talk about the future of the church, offer some visions for observance of the 500th anniversary of the Reformation in 2017, and more.  RSVP to or 713.723.3509.

ECW Spiritual Growth Workshop in Salado on March 15
Join the ECW at St. Joseph Episcopal Church, 881 N. Main St., Salado for a free Spiritual Growth Workshop entitled "Tending Your Spiritual Garden" on March 15 at 10 a.m. The Rev. Mary Koppal from Good Shepherd, Austin, will share her advice on taking care of ourselves so that we may better take care of others. Workshop stations will include making bath crystals, rock salt potpourri, prayer beads, lotions and recycled paper with wildflower seeds. The workshop is open to all women. Gather your best friends for a relaxing day in Salado. This is a free event, but please register here.

Seniors and Family Invited to Abundant Living Conference, March 10-14
This conference at Camp Allen, will feature outstanding speakers and activities. The entire three day/two night conference has been underwritten so that the entire cost for a early bird registrant is $185 including all meals, lodging, and socials at Camp Allen. You can register at or by calling Heather Lundy at 936.825.7175.

Taizé Brothers Visiting Texas in March and April
Join them in Austin March 21-23, Dallas April 4-6, or Houston April 25-27

Camp Allen Summer Camp Registration is Open
Camp Allen is accepting applications for the summer of 2014. More than 350 campers already registered in January, which is ahead of last year’s record pace. The campers ages are entering 3rd grade through high school. You can find the information at

Dallas Benedictine Experience takes place on June 25-28
The 17th annual multi-denominational Dallas Benedictine Experience will take place at The Catholic Conference and Formation Center in Dallas. This monastic experience is presented by Friends of St. Benedict, Washington, DC and is open to men and women, laity and clergy of all denominations. Click here to learn more.

More Upcoming Events

February 13 - Health Insurance Informational Meeting, Baytown

February 14 - Faith Formation 20/20 with John Roberto, Dallas

February 15 - Altar Guild Workshop, Lufkin

February 19 - Nidaros Cathedral Boys Choir in Conroe

February 22 - Bistro Tomaso, Houston

February 22 - SSW BBQ Showdown, Austin

Click here for a full calendar.

Prepare for Lent Madness: The Saintly Smack Down [more]

Austin Charity Barbecue Competition and Acoustic Concert Returns [more]

Black History Spotlight: St. Augustine's, the First African-American Episcopal Church in Texas [more]

Council Wrap-up: Bishop Highlights a Growing, "Tenacious" Church [more]

Election Results from 2014 Diocesan Council [more]



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  • "Christianity is not a theory or speculation, but a life; not a philosophy of life, but a life and a living process." Samuel Taylor Coleridge
  • "Most people are willing to take the Sermon on the Mount as a flag to sail under, but few will use it as a rudder by which to steer." Oliver Wendell Holmes
  • "Perfection, in a Christian sense, means becoming mature enough to give ourselves to others." Kathleen Norris
  • "Do all the good you can, by all the means you can, in all the ways you can, in all the places you can, at all the times you can, to all the people you can, as long as ever you can." John Wesley
  • "The Christian ideal has not been tried and found wanting; it has been found difficult and left untried." G. K. Chesterton
  • "One of our great allies at present is the Church itself. Do not misunderstand me. I do not mean the Church as we see her spread out through all time and space and rooted in eternity, terrible as an army with banners. That, I confess, is a spectacle which makes our boldest tempters uneasy. But fortunately it is quite invisible to these humans." C. S. Lewis
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  • "Christians are hard to tolerate; I don't know how Jesus does it." Bono
  • "It's too easy to get caught in our little church subcultures, and the result is that the only younger people we might know are Christians who are already inside the church." Dan Kimball