“Community, Leadership Development, and Formation for Youth” – Bishop’s Happening Movement Report

Emily Kittrell, incoming Board Chair for the Bishop’s Happening Movement, joined by student leader Maddie Callier, report on the vitality for the student-led spiritual renewal weekend geared for tenth through twelfth grade high school students.

The diocese sponsors three Happening weekends each year – March, August, and November – in different host churches throughout the diocese.

Emily shares, “We live in a world of competing narratives about where value and worth exist. The pressures our youth are growing up under can give a false sense of reality, one that pulls them further and further from the truth of their belovedness as creations of God. As adults, it is incredibly difficult to figure out how to speak to, relate to, and especially to convey the message of God’s truth…The beauty of Happening is that youth share the message of hope, belonging, and love with each other. And I’m here to tell you, it works like magic.”

  • To learn more about Happening, or register a student, visit dwtx.org/happening.
  • To offer to host a Happening or H.I.S. Love weekend, or express interest in serving as a Spiritual Director, email emily.kittrell@dwtx.org.

Diocesan Council 2019 – Day Three

Bienvenido a Council 2019!

Here’s a preview of what’s in store for us today, Saturday, February 23.

8:00 a.m. Exhibits Open

8:45 a.m. Youth in Action Praise Band plays gathering music; come sing with us!

9:00 a.m. Council reconvenes
Daily Devotion with Youth
Bishop’s Happening Movement
Vital University Missions
Commissioning of Youth in Action participants
Way of Love Conversation: GO

Bishop Suffragan Report
Military Ministry
Christian Formation
Greetings from the Rt. Rev. Lloyd Allen, Bishop of Honduras
IONA Program
Committee on the Bishop’s Address
Way of Love Conversation: REST
Church Planting Initiative Executive Board, Budget Priorities and Apportionment Ad Hoc Committees Interim Reports
Bishop’s Spring Retreat
Revitalizing Stewardship Invitation
Bishop’s Summary
Invitation to Council 2020
Council Adjourns

1:00 p.m. Childcare and Exhibits Close

“Opportunity for the Diocesan Family” – The Douglass Foundation Scholarship Committee

The Rev. Stephen Carson shares with Council about the work of The Douglass Foundation Scholarship Program. Established to support the fields of education, entrepreneurship, science and the arts in the Diocese of West Texas, the foundation has awarded $650,800 to 39 recipients since 2000.

This scholarship is for those seeking advanced degrees in the fields of theology, business, and psychology. The application deadline for the 2019 – 2020 school year is June 14th.

Stephen shares, “The reason I am speaking to you today is to encourage you, our diocesan family, to identify and inform potential applicants about the scholarship program.”

More information about the fund is available at the diocesan website.

Way of Love Conversation: Bless

During Council 2019, participants are invited into seven conversations about each of the seven practices for a Jesus-centered life laid out by the Most Rev. Michael Curry. Contributors to the Fall/Winter 2018 Reflections Magazine that explored the Way of Love will introduce each Bible study conversation, either in person or via video.

Watch the Rev. Mary Earle’s introduction below, and consider, “In what ways is the spirit calling you to bless others?”

“Building a Bridge for Diocesan Schools” – Deputy for Episcopal Schools

Mary Katherine Duffy, incoming Deputy for Episcopal Schools, reports on her vision for the new consulting role for Episcopal Schools she will assume beginning in the fall.

Duffy shares, “As the Chairman of the Episcopal Schools Commission for the last ten years, I can tell you firsthand that our schools have not had the diocesan support that they have needed. Bishop Reed and I began to dream about how the diocese could be more supportive and offer more resources to these schools that are ministering to thousands of students, parents, and faculty members each year. The position of Bishop’s Deputy for Episcopal Schools was born.”

She later continues, “I will spend my time visiting our schools, supporting the clergy and school heads, and facilitating conversations around each school’s strengths and challenges. I will build relationships, provide resources and support, and ultimately work to help the leaders of our school develop the skills they need to be the best they can be.

We will focus on areas of governance, finance, human resource management, and personal development. I will be the liaison between the bishops, the diocesan staff, and the schools, as we work through the challenges that our schools are facing each day.”

“Building Trust and Building Relationships” – The Rt. Rev. Daniel Gutierrez, Bishop of Pennsylvania

The Rt. Rev. Daniel Gutierrez, Bishop of Pennsylvania, addresses Council after his keynote at the Bishop’s Luncheon. Bishop Gutiérrez was consecrated on July 16, 2016 as the 16th Bishop of Pennsylvania. Before his ordination as bishop, Gutiérrez served as Canon to the Ordinary, Chief Operating Officer, and Chief of Staff in the Episcopal Diocese of the Rio Grande. Bishop Gutiérrez has focused his ministry on emphasizing the sacred presence of Jesus Christ, empowering laity, inspiring creative solutions for church growth, emphasizing the missions of the church, social justice, poverty, and ensuring that transparency is part of everything.

Bishop Gutierrez shares, “Part of the challenge is that we have to retell the story about the Body of Christ. We have to say we’re not congregationalists; we are this Body of Christ. … And we’re doing it together. It’s about building trust. It’s about building relationships.

We do have the same challenges. When the world says there’s no hope, you’re the hope. We have to live with a theology of abundance and not scarcity, courage and not fear.”

Bishop’s Valley Golf Classic Results

Sarah Robinson delivers the results of this past year’s Valley Golf Classic tournament in March of 2018.

The Valley Golf Classic benefits Vital University Missions’ program in the Rio Grande Valley on Friday, March 22 at Rancho Viejo Resort and Country Club. Team and sponsor sign up is available at dwtx.org/events.

Resolutions from the Constitutions and Canons Committee

Rod Schneider with the Committee on Resolutions presents two resolutions:

  • Resolution 1-2019 on Canon 9, Section 4 regarding Synod of the Province delegates
  • Resolution 2-2019 on Canon 15, regarding Episcopal Schools

Both resolutions pass after a brief discussion from the floor.

You can read the full text of the resolutions here. The complete diocesan Constitutions and Canons are available on the diocesan website; click here to view.

“Shared Success and Gratitude” – Good Samaritan Community Services Report


The Rev. Michael Chalk, Board Chairman, and Mr. Simon Salas, CEO give the report on Good Samaritan Community Services, a ministry of the Diocese of West Texas, which serves as a catalyst for change, supporting youth, individuals, and families, by providing excellent community services to overcome economic poverty.

Mike Chalk shares, “During my time as chair I plan to work with even more of you to help advance the mission of this place. Our success depends on all of us coming together to help our neighbors at Good Samaritan.”

Simon Salas adds to the conversation, “This past year we served more than 5,600 children, adults, and seniors from prenatal to 99 years old…Our ability to provide our nationally-recognized programs to all who are in need could not be done without the incredible partnerships with all of you in this room. From your volunteer hours, to providing Christmas bags for families, financial support, and your prayers, we are very blessed and grateful.”