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May 26, 2023

An Invitation to Give to the St. Francis Chapel Fund In Thanksgiving for Bishop David M. and Patti Reed

A Letter from Judy Quisenberry and the Bishops' Transition Committee

Dear Friends,

Since the start of the year, the Bishops' Transition Committee has been thinking about how best to honor Bishop David M. Reed and his wife Patti, in his retirement as Bishop of West Texas. We are so grateful for the gifts and sacrifices both have given during his time as a bishop and a parish priest all over the Diocese!

The Committee believes supporting Bishop Reed's plan to renovate St. Francis Chapel at Camp Capers is a wonderful way to honor the Reeds. Bishop Reed has served Camp Capers in many different roles since he was a teenager. For more than thirty years, he and Patti have led and attended camp sessions and retreats for children, youth, and adults there. They know firsthand the life-giving friendships and the "God moments" found there.

My husband, Greg, is serving on the Camp Capers Master Planning Committee which began its work in 2022 and presented its first recommendations at the Camp Capers 75th Reunion weekend last October. Greg and I first met David at Camp Capers in the mid-eighties, when he was a newly ordained priest serving as a dean and we were counselors. Many years later, we were blessed to call him our Rector when he served at St. Alban’s Church in Harlingen for 12 years. Over the years of knowing him, he has been a dear friend, a counselor, a terrific pastor, spiritual director, and so much more. Though it was hard to see him leave St. Alban’s when he was elected Bishop Suffragan, we knew his ministry would benefit the whole Diocese in a new way.

Bishop David has known since he was a boy that one of the things that makes our Diocese really special is its spiritual heart, Camp Capers – or as Bishop Jim Folts is credited to say, “the cathedral of our Diocese”. So much spiritual growth and fellowship happens there. Most people familiar with the place and its ministries, including summer camp and year-round retreats, agree that additional space in the chapel is needed. But, discussing the chapel renovation has been difficult, as the chapel holds such deep memories for so many.

If you know Bishop David, you know that he is nostalgic, loves tradition and does not run immediately to the newest, latest or most technologically advanced shiny thing. He has even been known to keep mementos like the old plastic dining room food trays from Camp Capers! Given his love for history and tradition, it may have been surprising to some that he agreed the chapel renovation is necessary to continue to minister to the people who use Camp Capers. We are grateful that the chapel is bursting at the seams, that says we are expanding our reach at this special place!

Bishop David included the Camp Capers chapel renovation in his address to the Diocese during this year’s annual Diocesan Council; here is a snippet:

St. Francis Chapel - It may truly be the most beloved spot in that beloved place… The beautiful, simple, open-air chapel has served for 75 years; it fits camp perfectly; and it’s badly in need of repair. As our summer camp capacity has grown, the chapel has become cramped and overcrowded – a problem we wish all our churches had, right? Built to seat about 120 people, the chapel now might have as many as 200 crammed in, with counselors and staff members sitting on the floor or ground outside. So, I changed my mind. Now is the perfect time to renovate St. Francis Chapel, and I believe the heart of camp is precisely the starting point we need for the new master plan, as we launch into the next season of Camp Capers’ mission and prepare to welcome a new bishop.

During his address, David mentioned that he and Patti pledged the first donation towards this project. Based on his request, Greg and I are honored to make a gift towards the chapel renovation too, and we would love for you to join us. Information about how to give is included below. We think it’s a fitting gift to honor David's legacy of ministry, especially as the tenth Bishop of the Diocese of West Texas, and especially now.

Thank you,

Judy and Greg

Judy Quisenberry                               Greg Quisenberry
Bishops' Transition Committee      Camp Capers Master Plan Committee

Ways to Give to the St. Francis Chapel Renovation Fund

There are three ways for congregations and individuals to give to the St. Francis Chapel Renovation in gratitude for the Rt. Rev. David M. and Patti Reed:

  1. Online, at dwtx.org/give.
  2. Text "Chapel" to (210) 796-6805.
  3. Mail a check to the diocesan office*, made out to "DWTX" and labeled "St. Francis Chapel Gift."

*Episcopal Diocese of West Texas
Attn: St. Francis Chapel Gift
P.O. Box 6885
San Antonio, TX 78209

Click here to give online.
Click here to sign up for periodic email updates regarding the St. Francis Chapel Renovation.

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