Watch this video about the Faith Summit, foster care, and adoption, and then please share it with your friends and congregation!

Join us for the 2016 Texas Faith Leader Summit on Wednesday, November 2, at the State Capitol Building in Austin, Texas. This is a unique opportunity to explore ways that the faith community can work with the State of Texas and Child Protective Services to benefit foster children. If your congregation has a child welfare ministry - or if you're thinking of starting one - meet us at the Summit!

  • Registration is now open. Admission is free, but seating is limited. [register now]
  • There are several affordable hotels close to the Capitol. [book online]
  • Parking is located near the Capitol at a reasonable rate. [see map]

For additional information, special assistance, or other accommodations, email or call Lesley Guthrie at (512) 438-4308.

Special Guest Speakers

Texas First Lady Cecilia Abbott
State of Texas

First Lady Cecilia Abbott

The first Hispanic First Lady in Texas history has devoted her life to serving others - in education, health care, the arts, and more. She has been married to Governor Greg Abbott for 35 years. [learn more]

Texas Lieutenant Governor Dan Patrick
State of Texas

Lieutenant Governor Dan Patrick

Elected in 2014, Dan Patrick is calling for a faith-based collaboration to help children who are involved, or at risk of becoming involved, with the foster care system. [learn more]

Texas Senator Charles Schwertner
Texas Senate

Senator Charles Schwertner

Elected to the Senate in 2012, this sixth-generation Texan serves District 5 including Georgetown, Bryan/College Station, and Huntsville. He is Chairman of the Senate Committee on Health and Human Services. [learn more]

Texas Supreme Court Justice Eva Guzman
Texas Supreme Court

Justice Eva Guzman

Now in her 15th year on the bench, Justice Guzman was the first Hispanic woman elected to state-wide office in Texas when she ran in 2010. She is Chair of the Court's Permanent Judicial Commission for Children, Youth and Families. [learn more]

HHSC Executive Commissioner Charles Smith
Health and Human Services Commission

Executive Commissioner Charles Smith

Gov. Abbott selected Charles Smith to lead HHSC in 2016. He previously served as deputy for child support at the Office of the Attorney General. [learn more]

DFPS Commissioner H.L. "Hank" Whitman, Jr.
Department of Family & Protective Services

Commissioner H.L. "Hank" Whitman, Jr.

A former Chief of the Texas Rangers, Hank Whitman was named DFPS Commissioner in 2016 by Texas Governor Greg Abbott. [learn more]

Bishop Aaron Blake, Sr.
Harvest Family Life Ministry

Bishop Aaron Blake, Sr.

Bishop Blake, who leads the Greater Faith Community Church in Brownwood, and his wife, Mary, launched the Harvest Family Life Ministry in 2003. [learn more]

About the Summit

Now more than ever, faith communities are involved in the care and well-being of children and families involved in the child welfare system. Congregations provide lasting support through outreach, prevention and recruitment of foster and adoptive parents. They also can help children safely reunify with their parents. The faith communities' ongoing partnership with the State is crucial to the health and safety of Texas' children.

We invite you to explore ways that the State can join hands with the faith community to benefit Texas children and families. We invite you to attend the 2016 Texas Faith Leader Summit ( where we will break down barriers and explore ways to join together to help our most vulnerable Texans.

For additional information, special assistance, or other accommodations, email or call Lesley Guthrie at (512) 438-4308.


  • Opportunities for Congregations to Engage with Families
  • Collaborating with Local Community Partners
  • Preventing Families From Entering the Foster Care System


Registration is open! Free admission, but you must RSVP. Seating is limited, so be sure to register early! register now

When & Where

Wednesday, November 2, 2016
check-in begins at 7:45 am, conference at 8:45
Texas State Capitol Building
1100 Congress Avenue
Austin, Texas 78701
map / parking