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Weekly Witness is your weekly update on the mainstream faith community’s perspective on everything Texas public policy. Hosted by Texas Impact's Scott Atnip, Weekly Witness is recorded in front of a live audience in downtown Austin. We host policy experts, faith leaders, and elected officials who provide in-depth information on relevant policy issues in the state. Weekly Witness is a product of Texas Impact, Texas’ oldest and largest interfaith advocacy group. Visit texasimpact.org for more ...
 
This is the official podcast of the Texas Interfaith Center for Public Policy. The TICPP is a faith-based 501c3 nonprofit with a mission to help people of faith participate faithfully and effectively in public policy discussions concerning broad religious social concerns through non-partisan education on policy issues and training in civic participation. From food and mental health to the theology of creation care, the Interfaith Center is committed to developing people of faith into well-ed ...
 
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show series
 
This week we are joined by United Women in Faith leaders Mary Brown and Darlene Alfred for a conversation about UWFaith and civic engagement. Mary Brown served as committee chair for this year's UWFaith Texas Legislative Event. Darlene Alfred serves on the national board of UWFaith, and is a Texas Impact Board Member.…
 
This week Texas Impact's Executive Director Bee Moorhead fills in for Scott. She had a chance to sit down with Maria Coyne, President and CEO of the United Church of Christ’s Cornerstone Fund. They discussed legacy giving and how faith-based funds like Cornerstone can work with congregations to engage in and support justice ministries through the w…
 
This week we are coming to you from Houston featuring a conversation with Juan Cardoza-Oquendo, Director of Policy and Elections with Houston in Action, an organization that convenes member organizations interested in impacting systemic change rooted in racial justice and equity for historically excluded groups. It is an important reminder for thos…
 
This week we have a special episode for you, featuring the audio from Texas Impact’s Interfaith Service of Public Witness that took place on the steps of the Capitol this Tuesday January 10th. Texas Impact has been hosting this event for 50 years. But, this year was unique in that NINE state representatives from various faith backgrounds participat…
 
Weekly Witness is back for our first episode of 2023, just in time for the start of the 88th Texas Legislature. Scott welcomes Texas Impact's Advocacy Director Josh Houston back to the program to discuss a few of the hot topics leading into the session, namely religious freedom, and how they apply to the policy making process we are about to witnes…
 
This year we released the 200th episode of Weekly Witness! We’ve got one final episode of Weekly Witness for this year, a “clip show” highlighting a few of the many fascinating conversations Scott has had with faith leaders during the course of our first 200 episodes. We hope you’ll listen to this episode—and don’t forget, all of our old episodes a…
 
The dust has settled for a majority of races in the 2022 midterm elections with run-offs scheduled for December 13th. Texas Impact’s Advocacy Director, Joshua Houston, joins Scott to discuss his take-aways from the results so far and turn our direction toward the upcoming 88th Texas Legislature. Bill filing has already begun and January is just aro…
 
We continue our series on Texas Impact's 2023 Legislative Priorities by discussing reproductive rights, religious freedom and what Texans of faith should consider before the November election. Rabbi Mara Nathan, Senior Rabbi at Temple Beth-El in San Antonio, is with us for the conversation. Later in the program, Texas Impact's Executive Director Be…
 
This week we continue our series on Texas Impact's legislative priorities with a discussion about protecting LGBT rights and what Texans of faith can do. With us for the conversation is Bishop Suffragan Kai Ryan with the Episcopal Diocese of Texas. Later in the program, we will be joined by Texas Impact’s Advocacy Director, Joshua Houston to help u…
 
We interrupt our series on Texas Impact's 2023 legislative priorities to bring you a very timely episode as the midterms quickly approach. Scott is joined by Bee Moorhead and Joshua Houston to discuss some of the tools and opportunities Texas Impact is providing to Texas' faith communities this election. Find out more by visiting our website at tex…
 
This week we continue our legislative priority series with a discussion about immigration priorities and what Texans of faith can do. During this series, we will welcome a faith leader to help introduce a section of the legislative priorities and have a conversation about why it is an important priority to the faith community. With us this week is …
 
We continue our series on Texas Impact's 2023 legislative priorities with a discussion about the climate crisis and what Texans of faith can do. This week, we welcome Susan Henry Crowe, General Secretary of the United Methodist General Board of Church and Society to discuss climate issues. Yes, she is our second Susan in a row. Also back again this…
 
This week we begin our series on the Texas Impact Legislative priorities in earnest. For the remainder of this series, we plan to welcome a faith leader to help introduce a section of the legislative priorities and have a conversation about why it is an important priority to the faith community. This week we welcome Rev Dr. Susan Frederick Gray, Pr…
 
We continue our guided tour of Texas Impact's legislative priorities for the 2023 Texas legislative session with some of the folks who helped shape them. In this episode, members of Texas Impact's Board of Directors share their individual perspective on the work and thought put into the process of developing Texas Impact’s legislative priorities. B…
 
Over the next ten weeks, Weekly Witness will take you on a guided tour of Texas Impact's legislative priorities for the 2023 Texas legislative session. In this episode, Texas Impact staff provide an overview of the legislative priorities and offer insights into how they get developed. Bee, Josh, and Beaman discuss how the priorities have changed ov…
 
We present the final installment of our four-part series on public education. Sherry Miller, Past President of the Texas Classroom Teachers Association, joins Scott to discuss how to support teachers and public schools in the post-COVID world. Later in the program, catch an informal chat between Bee and Josh, recorded while Scott was away. After th…
 
We continue our summer fun with the third installment of our four-part series on public education. The goal of this series is to prepare listeners to discuss public education issues with elected officials and candidates for office…note-taking is encouraged. In today’s episode, Scott has a lively conversation with one of the state’s leading advocate…
 
This week we continue our summer fun with the second installment of our four part series on public education. Rejoining us today will be one of the state’s leading experts on public school policy, Ellen Williams, an attorney and public school expert with 35 years of experience in and around the Capitol. Later in the program we are joined by the Tex…
 
It is summer vacation for many...but here at Texas Impact, we think it's time to focus on public education! We hope to provide some summer homework–not to prepare kids to go back to school, but to prepare you for conversations with your elected representatives and candidates going into election season. Joining us this week is one of the state’s lea…
 
Weekly Witness had planned to kick off a series on public education policy for the month of June with a conversation on vouchers and charter schools, but current events intervened. We spend this week talking about the Uvalde school shooting, focusing on outsized connection between gun violence and public schools. Scott is joined by attorney Ellen W…
 
This week we are excited to welcome our good friend Bishop Mike McKee to the program. Bishop McKee is the Bishop of the North Texas Annual Conference of the United Methodist Church, based out of Dallas, and joins us to celebrate the launch of the new bishop-led podcast Unfinished Church. Later in program, Josh Houston joins us to talk about what ca…
 
As Texans face another episode of grid-uncertainty, we talk with some experts who are working on solutions. Dr. Joshua Rhodes is with the University of Texas Webber Energy Group, which recently released a report detailing how Texas could get to net zero carbon emissions by 2050. Later in the program we are joined by former Texas Impact intern Suzan…
 
It's Earth Week y'all! Scott sits down with Luke Metzger, the Executive Director of Environment Texas, as they discuss Texas' renewable energy landscape and some of the exciting projects on their plate for 2022. Later in the program Bee Moorhead joins us with audio from a recent gathering of journalists in Houston where she had the privilege of sit…
 
This week we turn our focus to state agencies and vulnerable kids. Scott speaks Elisa O'Callaghan, Chair of the Board of Justice For Our Neighbors (JFON), and Bobby Watson, Texas Impact's Immigration Advocacy Fellow. Elisa and Bobby provide updates on the situation at the border, including recent changes to Title 42 and its impact on migrant childr…
 
The Texas 2022 primary elections are over, so Scott sits down with two policy pros to parse out the highlights heading in to the runoffs. Bonnie Bruce is long-time Capitol insider who has recently founded her own government affairs practice, Mesquite Strategies. Texas Impact Foundation Board President Beaman Floyd also joins us this week to survey …
 
This week we address the recent attacks on transgender youth and their parents by the Texas Governor and Attorney General. Scott speaks with Shelly Skeen, an attorney with Lambda Legal, about the impact of these attacks, and with TX UU Justice Ministry executive director Rev. Erin Walter, who speaks passionately about the role of Texas' communities…
 
We wrap up our series on election 2022 as Scott welcomes special guest Sen. Carol Alvarado of Houston to talk about her filibuster during the multi-session fight over Texas' election reform legislation. Texas Impact Executive Director Bee Moorhead joins Scott to reflect on his conversation with Sen. Alvarado. Former Texas Impact intern Rev. Ezequie…
 
Our series on elections continues: Scott interviews defenders of democracy and cheerleaders for voting. Grace Chimene, President of the League of Women Voters about Election 2022. Scott is also joined by Kendal Gladish and Cathy Morgan from University Presbyterian Church in Austin to talk about their congregation's efforts to encourage voting. Thei…
 
Our series on elections continues: Scott interviews women leaders from two national voting rights organizations, who are focused on empowering Texas' diverse electorate amid the confusion resulting from SB1. Christina Das, Attorney at the NAACP LDF, talks to Scott from Brooklyn about the Voting Rights Defender Project at the Thurgood Marshall Insti…
 
November 29, 2021: Weekly Witness: Climate Change and Methane, a conversation about climate change and methane featuring Colin Leyden, Texas Political Director for the Environmental Defense Fund and Cassandra Carmichael, Executive Director of the National Religious Partnership for the Environment
 
November 15, 2021: Weekly Witness: Featuring a panel to discuss the recent rise in anti-Semitism in Texas, including: Rabbi Neil Blumofe, Congregation Agudas Achim in Austin; Rabbi Nancy Kasten, Faith Commons in Dallas; Renee Lafair, Anti-Defamation League-Austin; and Rev. Jonathan Page, First Congregational Church of Houston.…
 
Weekly Witness: PUC Sunset Update with Adrian Shelley, Public Citizen, joins us this week to discuss the latest news about the Public Utilities Commission in the Sunset Committee and Josh Houston, Texas Impact, provides us with an update on the Texas Legislature.
 
Weekly Witness: Faith Leaders support equality, oppose anti-trans bullying with Rev. Naomi Brown, Pride Center San Antonio, Rev. Dr. Neil Thomas, Cathedral of Hope UCC-Dallas, Dr. Annaliese Cothron, Texas Impact Board Member, Unitarian Universalist, and Rev. Diane McGehee, Bering Church-Houston.
 
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