About EPISO

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El Paso Interreligious Sponsoring Organization (EPISO) 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 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 builds relational power and exercises that power to strengthen our communities and bring about a more just society.  

Teaching & Practicing Democracy

EPISO 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 / Border Interfaith Leaders Travel to State Capitol to Call for Increased Funding for Schools & Adult Education

    EPISO and Border Interfaith leaders, joined by representatives from Project ARRIBA, flew in to the Texas Capitol to join hundreds of Texas IAF leaders calling on state legislators to increase state finance of adult and K-12 education.  After a morning briefing on school finance, the Texas Innovative Career Education (ACE) program and other issues -- including healthcare, payday lending, and infrastructure in the colonias -- leaders were honored for their establishment of noteworthy labor market intermediaries, including Project ARRIBA.  Immediately afterward, they convened on the South Capitol steps.  El Paso area legislators stood in solidarity with leaders and pledged to continue working for investments in people, including Representatives Joe Moody (HD 78), Mary Gonzalez (HD 75) and Art Fierro (HD 79). In photos above, Fr. Ken Ducre from Christ the Savior Catholic and Rep. Joe Moody speaks to crowd, which includes leaders from sister organizations TMO in Houston, COPS/Metro in San Antonio, Central Texas / Austin Interfaith,  West Texas Organizing Strategy (WTOS), Dallas Area Interfaith and Valley Interfaith in the Rio Grande Valley.  After the press conference, leaders broke out into smaller delegations to meet with legislators representing their geographic regions.      Organizations Call On State Legislators to Support Adult Education, Univision 62 [Spanish video]  Piden a Legisladores Texanos Más Fondos Para Apoyar la Educación de Adultos, Univision 62  Valley Interfaith: State's Share of School Funding Has Dropped From 50% to Barely 36%, Rio Grande Guardian  
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    Montana Vista Road Extension Breaks Ground

    Over the past 20 years residents of Montana Vista, a Colonia located on the outskirts of El Paso, Texas, felt like a forgotten community because of the poverty, the isolation of the area, and the difficulty to get access to county and state representatives. They appealed to the then pastor of San Juan Diego Catholic Church, Father Ed Roden-Lucero, who was a longtime leader and co-chair of EPISO, for support in getting much needed basic services and infrastructure for their community. They began by discussing efforts to get water, wastewater, parks, single-member voting districts for the Clint Independent School District, and for the extension of Greg Rd. to Edgemere Blvd. The initial request for the extension of the road was for convenience, not safety. However, when a serious accident occurred that closed the only entrance to this community for more than 8 hours during the day, they saw the urgency in pushing elected officials for the extension of Greg Rd to Edgemere. They held accountability sessions with candidates and obtained commitments from the then newly elected county commissioner, Vince Perez. Leaders attended meetings and hosted hundreds of house meetings with the constituency to push for the safety improvements and extension of the roads. On the day of the accident there was no access in or out of the Montana Vista area for a whole day. The only way out or in was to take a one-hour detour to Horizon Blvd and then through back roads. It was chaos for parents taking their children to school, buses picking up and dropping off children, and people going to and from work. The extension of Greg Rd. became the only solution for the safety of the community. Today we gathered with Fr. Ed Roden-Lucero, leaders of San Juan Diego, residents of Montana Vista, and county commissioner Vince Perez at the opening of the new four lane road with bike routes, sidewalks, lighting, and landscaping. Together we all celebrated the accomplishment of the extension and the countless hours of work that the leaders and residents invested to make their community safer. Video of Ceremony
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