Central TX Interfaith, with Waco Mayor and County Judge, Convenes 100+ Clergy to Navigate Stay-at-Home Orders

With the coronavirus transforming the way religious congregations operate all over Texas, Central Texas Interfaith has been at the forefront of efforts in Waco and McLennan County to bring together congregational leaders and help them navigate Stay-at-Home orders.  

Town Hall Held with Faith LeadersCBS-KWTX


Central TX Interfaith, Texas IAF Successfully Press State Commission for Utility Relief

"We believe people should be our priority over market, knowing that the two are not entirely disconnected.”

-- The Rev. Miles Brandon, St. Julian of Norwich Episcopal Church

In the only public testimony at today’s Texas Public Utilities Commission (PUC) meeting, Texas IAF leader Rev. Miles Brandon of Central Texas Interfaith called on the PUC to create assistance programs and halt cutoffs for customers impacted by the economic and health impacts of the COVID-19 crisis.   At the meeting the PUC voted to create the “COVID-19 Electricity Relief Program” providing financial assistance and halting service disconnections for low-income and unemployed customers in deregulated markets such as Dallas, Houston, and Round Rock  

 “COVID-19 is causing uncertainty and many hardships, and during this time, Central Texas Interfaith and our partner organizations in Texas IAF don’t want Texas citizens to have their physical or financial health put in danger unnecessarily," said Rev. Brandon, who is based in Round Rock.

PUC Chair DeAnn T. Walker recognized Fr. Brandon and the work of the Texas IAF organizations in advocating for families across the state. 

6 million Texans live in the areas impact by the measures enacted by PUC today including Round Rock, Dallas and Houston.  Texas IAF leaders plan to work with PUC leaders to extend and potentially expand these protections and assistance programs as long as the COVID-19 crisis continues.

[Photo Credit: Texas Tribune]

Texas Regulators Vote to Ban Residential Utility Shut-Offs During Pandemic While Buoying CompaniesTexas Tribune [pdf] 

Texans Unable to Pay Rent and Utility Bills Get Emergency ReliefNBC-DFW [pdf]

Statement by Rev. Miles Brandon, St. Julian of Norwich Episcopal Church, Central TX Interfaith

Statement by Bryan Lopez, Assumption Catholic Church in Houston, TMO

Texas IAF Letter to the Public Utilities Commission 


Immediate COVID-19 Call to Action

Call your Congress Member &
US Senators from Texas TODAY

For Direct Income Payments & Access to Testing!

CALL TO ACTION – Call or email your Congressperson and our 2 US Senators from Texas today to demand immediate federal funding for direct grants (income payments) to adults and an immediate expansion of funding for testing to be accessible to those who need it most, regardless of ability to pay.  We will need to continue calls/emails even if the current stimulus package being debated passes.  See talking points below. 

For phone numbers and direct email links to your Congressperson and our 2 U.S. Senators from Texas, enter your address at this website: https://www.270towin.com/elected-officials/

INTRO – “Hello, my name is (name), I am with (name of your congregation or institution) and Central Texas Interfaith.  With millions of lives at stake, we are calling on you (Congressperson’s name or U.S. Senator’s name) to advocate and vote for legislation that does the following:


  • Congress should immediately pass economic stimulus measures that provide ongoing grants (direct payments) from the US government -- not just for one month, but $1,000-$1,200 per month for every adult living in the U.S. until we are clear of this crisis.
  • This should ideally target people making less than $80,000-$100,000 per year.  This would allow low- to moderate-income people and families the ability to pay rent, purchase food, and have access to basic health services, utilities, transportation and other essentials.
  • The target should be every American taxpayer, regardless of nationality or whether they use a Tax Identification Number in lieu of a Social Security Number.
  • If the current stimulus bill being debated provides at least a start of an initial payment $1,000-$1,200, then pass it.  But this should be followed up with successive legislation to make payments ongoing. 


  • Congress should provide the funding necessary to vastly scale-up the availability of coronavirus tests for Americans who need it most. 
  • Testing should be available equally regardless of ability to pay, insured status, nationality, geographic area, and available to those who are homeless or are in the criminal justice system.
  • This includes adequate funding for ancillary testing equipment and protective gear for providers. 

Our world, and how we order our lives, has changed dramatically.  Though many of us are safely hunkered down in our homes, let us keep at the forefront of minds the elderly and most vulnerable, those experiencing homelessness, those who have lost their jobs, and those whose jobs keep us alive while putting themselves at risk, like healthcare, grocery, and other retail and service works.  After we ensure our families, friends, and others around us are safe and secure, lets carve out the time to continue to act on the faith that our collective power, will, and imagination are greatest when we keep organizing.