In Common 2021

In Common 2021 | Addressing Poverty 

Virtual Event

In Common 2021: Addressing Poverty | April 26-28, 2021

Join the Episcopal Health Foundation for the second virtual In Common gathering, where we will focus on addressing poverty. Congregations will learn how to work within their communities and alongside ministry partners to address the impacts of poverty, strengthen social networks, better understand food insecurity, and support mental health and wellbeing efforts. In Common 2021 is available via Zoom and free for all clergy, lay leaders, parishioners, and partners of the Episcopal Church.

Listen to a keynote address on Monday evening from Jeremy Everett, followed by a panel discussion on food insecurity. Participate in a workshop on Tuesday about the impacts of poverty on mental health. Finally, engage on Wednesday in a workshop titled Practical Steps to Starting Your Poverty Ministry.

COVID-19 has deepened the need to address poverty in our communities. In Common 2021 will focus on what you and your congregation can do to help identify the needs of your community, shine a light on the mental health impacts of living in poverty, and develop practical and transformative approaches to address poverty.

Registration is required for each event


Monday, April 26, 2021 | 6:30PM – 8:00PM

The Keynote Address

The featured speaker is Jeremy Everett, Executive Director and Founder of the Baylor Collaborative on Hunger and Poverty, formerly the Texas Hunger Initiative (THI).

The Baylor Collaborative on Poverty and Hunger is a capacity-building, anti-hunger project within Baylor University, which partners with federal and state agencies, and numerous faith- and community-based organizations to develop and implement strategies to alleviate hunger through research, policy analysis, education, and community organizing. Baylor Collaborative’s staff members and researchers have assisted local community efforts increasing hundreds of millions of additional meals to Texans since 2009.

Jeremy is a Next Generation Fellow of the University of Texas LBJ School’s Strauss Center for International Security and Law, a Senior Fellow with World Hunger Relief, Inc., and was appointed by U.S. Congress to serve on the National Commission on Hunger. Jeremy is the author of the “I Was Hungry: Cultivating Common Ground to End an American Crisis” (Brazos Press), and a contributing author in “Food and Poverty: Food Insecurity and Food Sovereignty Among America’s Poor” (Vanderbilt University Press), and “The End of Hunger: How Science, Religion, and Politics Can Work Together to Make Possible” (InterVarsity Press.) 

The Panelists

Doree Collins M.Ed., serves as Executive Director of the Un-Included Club, a non-profit local to Temple, Texas. Doree has led in this position for the past 5 years and before this, worked as a public-school teacher and administrator. She has developed programs with the youth and families of the organization in mind. Un-Included attracts and serves primarily black and brown youth and the environment and programs reflect the intentional effort to increase the self-esteem of these youth and families.

The Rev. Alex Montes-Vela is the founding priest of St. Mary Magdalene Episcopal Church in Manor, which began in his home in early 2010. After meeting for four and a half years at the Manor High School cafeteria, as well as in Manor area parks and at the local Lions Club hall, the St. Mary Magdalene community moved to its own location. St. Mary Magdalene has become a multiethnic community that worships and lives life bilingually (English and Spanish).

The Rev. Dave Sugeno is an Episcopal priest serving at Trinity Episcopal Church in Marble Falls. Dave was born and raised in Austin, TX and worked as a biologist and horticulturist prior to discerning a call to the priesthood. He has served Trinity Marble Falls since 2009. Dave has been privileged to be part of numerous successful food ministries at Trinity, serving usually in the capacity of cheerleader.

Monday, April 26, 2021 | 
6:30PM – 8:00PM


Tuesday, April 27, 2021 | 6:30PM-8:00PM


Wednesday, April 28, 2021 | 6:30PM-8:00PM

Mental Health, Poverty, and Systems Change in Texas

In this interactive workshop, participants will deepen their understanding of the complex relationship between poverty and mental health. The workshop will focus on a systems view of the policies and practices that are influenced by and influence poverty dynamics, while connecting these abstract ideas to examples and experiences of people in mental health recovery. Participants will walk away with ways to identify how people in congregations can meaningfully support those navigating mental health and economic challenges in their own communities.

Guest presenters include:
Lynda Frost
, J.D., Ph.D., Lyfro Consulting
Anna Jackson, MSSW, Alpinista Consulting
Jason Johnson, Hill Country MHDD Centers

Practical Steps to Starting your Poverty Ministry

Want to create a ministry to address poverty or restart/refocus a ministry post pandemic? This workshop will explore different approaches to impact poverty as a community focused ministry. Workshop presenters will focus on how to develop your ministry approach, how to identify and recruit team members, how to survey your community for actual needs, and more.

Guest presenters include:
Doug Greco
, Lead Organizer, Central Texas Interfaith
The Rev. Bill Cruse, Associate, Kaleidoscope Institute
And EHF Staff

Mental Health, Poverty, and Systems Change in Texas
Tuesday, April 27, 2021 | 6:30PM – 8:00PM
Practical Steps to Starting your Poverty Ministry
Wednesday, April 28, 2021 | 6:30PM – 8:00PM