EIM (Ethics and Integrity in Ministry) promotes the protection of minors, elderly adults and adults with disabilities as well as ethical behavior in all ministry.
An excerpt from a letter written by Bishop Joe Vasquez about EIM (September 18, 2018):
“In the summer of 2001, the Diocese of Austin inaugurated the Ethics and Integrity in Ministry (EIM)
program – one of the first programs for the protection of children and youth in the United States.
As your bishop, I remain committed to our shared effort to protect God’s children. I firmly expect all
clergy, religious, and laity who join in my ministry to act morally, ethically, and with integrity. The harm
caused by abuse, and the moral failure of our church leaders to properly address the scandal of abuse, cannot
be permitted to happen again. To that end, I require diligent compliance with our EIM policies and
procedures, which are continually reviewed and updated.
EIM compliance consists of five components: (i) the submission of an EIM application for ministry prior
to beginning any service in ministry, (ii) authorization for the diocese to run an initial background check
and rerun background checks at least every three years (and more often as needed); (iii) participation in an
EIM workshop within the first 60 days of ministry and at least once every three years; (iv) adherence to the
Diocese of Austin Policies on Ethics and Integrity in Ministry; and (v) classification in the diocesan EIM
database as authorized to engage in ministry.
The EIM workshop gives insight into the victim’s experience of sexual abuse, teaches the skills for
prevention and response, and reviews our EIM policies and procedures (which illustrate the ethical behavior
expected of those engaged in ministry). The diocesan EIM Office also provides age-appropriate education
to our youth, teaching them about boundaries, respect for self and others, safety in relationships, and the
sacredness of being a child of God.
The diocese takes firm action with those who fail to maintain ethical behavior in ministry and fosters healing
by providing pastoral support to victims of such conduct. It is my sincere hope that the EIM policies clearly
communicate the reporting procedures and diocesan response for each of the four general categories of
unethical conduct: (1) abuse, exploitation, or neglect of a child; (2) previous abuse, exploitation, or neglect
of a child who is now an adult; (3) abuse, exploitation, or neglect of an elderly person or a person with a
disability; and (4) all other breaches of ethical behavior expected of those in ministry.
You join more than 60,000 people in our diocese who have made a commitment to establishing a safe and
ethical environment for our children and others. I am grateful for your response in living your baptismal
call by joining my ministry and serving those who are entrusted to us.”
Click HERE to go to the Diocese of Austin EIM page.
Click HERE to find out who needs to be EIM Certified
The EIM Coordinator for St. Joseph Catholic Church in Rockdale is Theresa Alvarez. She will be able to help you with any questions you may have concerning EIM training and certification.
Theresa Alvarez may be reached by contacting the church office at: (512) 446-2049.