About EPISO / Border Interfaith

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El Paso Interreligious Sponsoring Organization (EPISO) / Border Interfaith is a broad-based community organization located in El Paso, Texas.  Our members are faith and neighborhood institutions who work across religious, racial, ethnic, economic, generational and neighborhood lines for the good of the whole community.

EPISO/Border Interfaith believes that in order for community leaders to be effective, we must be educated and informed citizens.  We engage in public discourse and initiate action guided by that conversation, creating opportunities for ordinary people to make real and dramatic change in the community.  We strive to hold elected officials accountable for their public responsibilities.

Affiliated with the Industrial Areas Foundation (IAF), the West/Southwest IAF and the Texas IAF, EPISO/Border Interfaith builds relational power and exercises that power to strengthen our communities and bring about a more just society.  

Teaching & Practicing Democracy

EPISO / Border Interfaith embraces a vision of a vibrant bilingual border community.  We are convinced that El Paso can be a better place to live – with better schools, better jobs, and healthier citizens.

  • We commit as institutional members to work for a community where the schools are excellent, all residents have affordable healthcare, and all people are treated with respect.
  • We hold our elected officials accountable to ensure they protect our natural environment, manage growth carefully, and make basic services available to all.
  • We pledge to identify and train leaders whose web of relationships transcend economic, racial, gender, and religious divisions.

Through building relational power and engaging actively in democratic civic life, our institutions and leaders will transform our border region.  Our motivation comes from the teachings of our diverse faiths and from our fervent belief in liberty and justice for all.


  • Latest from the blog

    EPISO Reflects on La Matanza with Pastoral Letter by Bishop Seitz

    In the immediate aftermath of the shooting in El Paso, EPISO / Border Interfaith launched a campaign to "Stand Against Fear," mobilizing an assembly of 300 faithful and kick-starting a campaign for gun safety legislation. Leaders have facilitated various listening sessions at their institutions and, after hearing the needs of their community, collaborated with local mental health providers to train and certify leaders in Mental Health First Aid. Catholic Bishop Mark Seitz soon wrote a Pastoral Letter “Night Will Be No More” calling the shooting “La Matanza” (The Slaughter) and reminding the faithful of the historic and systemic nature of racism in the American Southwest.    Leaders are now incorporating the letter into the listening sessions, unearthing stories of long-term trauma – of discrimination, racism and violence on both sides of the border, and, in contrast to trying to bring things 'back to normal,' are exploring what a better El Paso looks like. Night Will Be No More: Pastoral Letter to the People of God in El Paso (page 48), Catholic Extension [pdf]  Noche Ya No Habrá: Carta Pastoral al Pueblo de Dios en El Paso, Catholic Extension
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    EPISO/Border Interfaith Leverages $13M for Water, Wastewater Services in Montana Vista Colonia

    For years, Montana Vista felt like a forgotten community due to poverty, isolation and a lack of relationships with elected officials.  Residents appealed to their then-priest at San Juan Diego Catholic for support in getting much needed basic streets, parks and wastewater services.  A longtime leader and co-chair of EPISO, Father Ed Roden-Lucero and EPISO organizers worked with resident leaders, guiding them in their efforts to seek essential infrastructure. Part of those efforts included community education about the Economically Distressed Areas Program, a program created in 1989 by EPISO/Border Interfaith and sister Texas IAF organizations to address lack of infrastructure in the colonias.  That same year, EPISO/BI and Texas IAF organizations got out the vote to amend the Texas Constitution to provide the Texas Water Development Board $200 million dollars to issue grants and loans to install water and wastewater infrastructure in colonias and economically distressed areas.  Since 1989, over $1 Billion dollars have been invested in colonias and economically distressed areas across Texas. During the 2019 legislative session, Texas IAF leaders advanced efforts to generate millions in infrastructure dollars for Texas' poorest families by allowing the Texas Water Development Board (TWDB) to use money from the Economically Distressed Areas Program (EDAP) to provide access to drinking water and wastewater services.  When Prop 2 passed this November, it guaranteed $200 million more to work on this and similar projects in Texas. Change is coming to Montana Vista.  In January, a long-fought for (and separately funded) road extension was newly opened, with four lanes, bike routes, sidewalks, lighting, and landscaping.   Now, to community acclaim, El Paso Water is breaking ground for Phase 1 of its water and wastewater project -- scheduled for completion within 18 months.    El Paso Water Recognition of EPISO/Border Interfaith [video] Inician Obra de Agua y Drenaje en Montana Vista, Telemundo Montana Vista Road Extension Breaks Ground, EPISO
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