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, with Texas IAF, Bishops & Faithful Call on Lt. Governor and Senate to Reject 'Permitless Carry' Legislation

    Bishops, rabbis, clergy and faithful from across Texas convened to express vocal opposition to the passage of proposed legislation HB1927 which would allow "permitless carry" in the state of Texas. Catholic Bishop Mark Seitz referenced the massacre in El Paso which resulted in dozens of residents dead and seriously injured. Baptist Rev. Darryl Crooms from San Antonio testified to the "unnaturalness" of adults burying children.  Lutheran Rev. Jessica Cain testified to the impact of last weekend's shooting in North Austin on local worshippers.  Rabbi David Lyon recalled last year's deadly shooting in Santa Fe High School. Together -- with Lutheran Bishop Erik Gronberg, Episcopal Bishop Suffragan Kathryn Ryan, Methodist Director of Missional Outreach Andy Lewis, Dallas Catholic Bishop Gregory Kelly and several lay leaders -- all expressed concern that passage of HB1927 would increase gun violence.  States that have passed similar laws, removing the required license and training needed to carry a handgun, experienced spikes in homicides and gun violence. "You’ll find no scripture that will support this kind of legislation,” said Pastor John Ogletree, First Metropolitan Church of Houston.  “...it makes our church much less safe,” said El Paso Bishop Mark Seitz. Video of Press Conference Texas Faith Leaders Come Out Against 'Permitless Carry',  CBS Austin [pdf] Bishop Mark J. Seitz, Other Religious Leaders Oppose Bill That Would Ease Carrying of Guns, El Paso Times [pdf] Group of Texas State Leaders Say They're Opposed to Permitless Carry, FOX KDFW Religious Leaders Speak Against Texas Bill That Could Allow You to Carry Gun Without License, ABC13 Houston [pdf] Esto Opinan Líderes Religiosos en Tejas Sobre la Propuesta Legislativa de Portar Armas Sin Licencia, Univision Dallas  El Paso Bishop, Gun Store Weigh In On Texas 'Constitutional Carry' Bill Debate, KFOX14 [pdf] Bishops and Faith leaders Call on Lt. Governor/Senate to Reject HB1927 Dropping License & Training Requirement to Carry Guns, Texas IAF HB 1911 & HB 1927: Removing the License to Carry Requirement in Texas is Unsafe for Gun Owners and the Public
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    Texas Bishops: 'Electrical Grid Failure in Texas Was No Accident'

    [Excerpt below] While we desperately need immediate relief, we must also seek long-term systemic change. As faith leaders, we have a responsibility to cry out for the vulnerable and seek the common good, and this means the reform of a utility system that has served as a means for profit, putting profit before people. Last week, The Network of Texas Industrial Areas Foundation Organizations with interfaith leaders from across the state held a press conference, urging the governor and legislature to take responsibility and put people before profits. It is time to direct recovery resources and restructure utility oversight to protect all, especially the poorer residents already on the edge because of the pandemic. Bishops in Texas: Electrical Grid Failure was Preventable.  Without Accountability, It Will Happen Again, America Magazine [pdf]  'They Were Not Prepared': After Winter Crisis, Texas Will Have to Confront its Energy, Politics and Culture, Dallas Morning News [pdf]
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