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Jun 25, 2015 | Bob Kinney

Three Diocesan Young Adults Represent Episcopal Peace Fellowship at General Convention

Salt Lake City, Utah – Three young adults from the Diocese of Texas are taking part in the Episcopal Peace Fellowship’s Young Adult Delegation at General Convention, June 25-July3.


Maryann Philbrook, who attends St. Julian of Norwich, Austin, and TJ Geiger, a member of St. Stephen’s Church in Beaumont, are co-leaders of the Young Adult Delegation. Sarah Watkins, a member of St. James’, in Austin, is among the seven young adults who were selected from throughout the country.


“Continuing EPF’s tradition of involving young adults in the work of our church, seven young peacemakers from across the country are advocating for justice related resolutions through testimony in various committee hearings for the fourth consecutive General Convention. EPF fundraising and personal spending make their trips possible,” said the Rev. Allison Sandlin Liles, EPF executive director, who was part of the first EPF Young Adult Delegation at the 2006 General Convention.


Philbrook and Geiger are both members of the EPF National Executive Council.


Philbrook is shepherd of the delegation to the 2015 General Convention. An aspirant in the Diocese of Texas, she is EPF’s executive site director for urban pilgrimage that sustains existing urban pilgrimage sites (including Austin) and builds up leaders to create new sites for the pilgrimages throughout the country. The Texas Foundation supports her direction of the Austin Urban Pilgrimage. Philbrook first joined EPF as a member of its Young Adult Delegation at 2012 General Convention.


Geiger is vice chair of the EPF National Executive Council. He works as an assistant professor of English at Lamar University where he teaches writing and rhetoric. A longtime death penalty abolitionist, Geiger has previously served on the boards of directors for the National Coalition to Abolish the Death Penalty and the Texas Coalition to Abolish the Death Penalty.


Watkins first joined EPF two years ago when she co-led the Austin Urban Pilgrimage with Philbrook. Much of her activist work focuses on protecting and strengthening publicly-funded services that allow people with disabilities such as herself to live in their own homes and communities rather than in nursing homes and institutions. Watkins is also active in grassroots efforts to end the practice of incarcerating asylum-seeking families in for-profit immigration detention centers.


The Episcopal Peace Fellowship has worked to promote peace since Armistice Day 1939.