ESL classes provided by churches in Texas have not escaped the impact of COVID-19. Like so many educational activities, most of these classes have been suspended. Caring teachers are checking in on students using social media such as Facebook. Some churches – like Woodland Baptist in San Antonio – are holding classes on ZOOM. At Literacy ConneXus we are actively looking for resources to help churches respond to the needs of ESL students in this current context.

“North Texas Giving Tuesday Now” will be held on Tuesday, May 5, 2020. This emergency campaign will give our community the chance to help us empower adult learners and those who teach them, so that businesses can hire, people can work and families can thrive when YOU provide critical funds that will strengthen learners in these difficult times.

How you can help:

• GIVE! Visit and make a gift. You can even make a gift early or give on May 5, 2020.

• SPREAD THE WORD! Share our page via email, social media and text.

We are only strong because of our community of supporters, volunteers and advocates – THANK YOU!

What’s for Lunch?

WFL Box Title

Why we need you:

This year more than 220,000 kids in Texas will participate in USDA summer meals programs. It’s a given, if children lack food in their homes, they will surely lack books as well. Giving kids the opportunity to check out books at meals sites is a proven way to keep them reading over the summer, and the perfect way for churches to connect with families, and make a difference in their communities.

We are eager to support 50 churches in this summer’s ministry, and invite you to join us. Contact Literacy ConneXus to request a  free What’s for Lunch?  starter kit.

Kits include a box of new and gently used children’s books for check out, library cards and pockets, and a sample t-shirt book bag. The books provided will get you started; we recommend you conduct a book drive to give kids a great selection that will last the summer.


Here’s what to do:

  1. Call Lester at 817-696-9898 or e-mail to request your starter kit.
  2. Plan your What’s for Lunch? project with church members. Along with checking out books, will you provide crafts, read aloud sessions, other activities?
  3. Plan and execute a book drive.
  4.  Identify and coordinate with a meal site for your project,
  5. Keep us posted with pictures and updates!



Join Us at Monkey & Dog Books!

We’ll be hanging out at Monkey & Dog Books in Fort Worth on North Texas Giving Day. Thanks to a generous supporter, on-site donations will be matched up to $500! What a way to get the most out of your giving! We promise fun and refreshments, and lots of interesting people popping in and out all day. And, by the way, Monkey & Dog is the coolest bookstore in town.

Mark September 14th on your calendar!

LC loves MD Books

Get up and Give!

On North Texas Giving Day, your donation soars! Every dollar gets multiplied, some get matched, and others put us in the running for additional cash for the ministry. It’s a win-win-win for those we serve.

Please plan to be a part of this special day by giving to this ministry. The funds we receive will bless children and families who have little or no books in the home, and adults struggling with language and literacy needs.

Thank you for your continued prayers and support of Literacy Connexus!

Donate to LC

T-shirt Bags

This ministry project provides books to kids who have little or no reading materials in their homes. This summer, volunteers snipped and stitched more than a thousand bags. We filled them with books and gave them to kids participating in summer meals programs.

Click on the link below to see how easy it is to get involved.

T-shirt Bag Directions

finished t-shirt bag

Frank C. Laubach: Man of Faith

Frank Laubach believed anybody could become somebody if they learned how to read. He was a leader in the field of ministry to internationals and desired every church member have an international vision. His brilliance in creating reading methods adaptable to every language on the planet netted extraordinary results when prayer became the theme of his life.

Frank C. Laubach: Man of Faith by Gregory Lawson is the inspiring account of Laubach’s impact on the world. His Each One Teach One method, designed to “put Christ in the hearts of students while putting knowledge in their heads,” set the standard for worldwide literacy instruction in the 1930s, and is still widely used today.

Read Lawson’s account of Laubach’s struggle and eventual victory in the arena of Christian faith and practice. The book will inspire those who appreciate Laubach’s contribution to world literacy, even as it will call to action those who seek practical expression of Christian witness in a hurting world.

We are indebted to Carolyn Porterfield, interim director of WMU of Texas, for creating the online version of this book. Thanks to her thoughtful and diligent service, many will have the opportunity to meet Frank Laubach and become inspired by his life of faith.

Frank Laubach

Running for Robin

Last year I came in second in the Baton Rouge Beach Marathon. But I did not get special recognition–it was second to last. A beautiful 13.1 mile trip around the LSU lakes, but a slow one. This year I’m determined to do better. Much better. I’m motivated, and you can add to that motivation.

This year I’ll be running for Robin (Feistel) and all who do ESL ministry in churches in Texas. We are aiming to raise $5,000 to replenish the Robin Feistel Memorial Fund and to support ESL volunteer teacher training. (Last year 377 volunteers were trained using Robin’s TEX–Teaching English with Excellence.)

That’s where you come in. Would you pledge a penny, a nickel, a dime or a dollar for each person I pass doing the half marathon in Baton Rouge on December 3rd? Here’s a link to race results for 2015 to give you some perspective on your pledge. (I’m hoping to pass at least 75 of the estimated 400 race participants.)

Here’s some added incentive. An anonymous donor has offered to match donations up to $2,500–half our goal of $5,000!

It’s simple to pledge. Just contact us with your amount. Race results will be available in a few weeks.

Your gift will be tax deductible and support ESL ministries like the one described above at FBC Marble Falls.



Teach or Die

In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God . . .

Is it any wonder that the burden to teach adults to read was first felt and acted upon by the church?

Over 80 years ago, Frank Laubach became a literacy pioneer while working as a missionary with the Moro people of the Philippines. After a slow start, he earned trust by learning their language and enough about their Muslim religion to discuss and exchange ideas. He then developed a dictionary and simple method of teaching them to read in their language.

Laubach needed 20 teachers plus volunteers to keep up with the eager Moros. When his depression-era funding ran out, a native chieftain saved the day: “I’ll make everybody who knows how to read teach somebody else, or I’ll kill him.”

Frank Laubach stamp

Laubach wrote in his journal, “Everybody taught. Nobody died. Everybody liked it. I did not like the motto ‘teach or die’ and so changed it to ‘Each One Teach One.’” (Lawson, Gregory, Frank C. Laubach:  Man of Faith)

“Each One Teach One” incited an evangelistic harvest among the Moros, with conversions to Christianity the norm. Laubach spread the campaign globally over the next two decades with continued success.

Today Literacy Connexus is still helping churches provide a friendly, non-threatening environment to adults who may feel ashamed asking for help with reading. As one Chicagoan put it, “Admitting you can’t read is just as scary as walking out in the street in front of a car.” (Chicago Tribune)

On February 24 volunteers affiliated with the Forward Training Center in Granbury, TX, will gather to learn how to teach adults to read better. They’ll use the Laubach Way to Reading materials as a core curriculum. And they’ll be thinking about strategies to take the fear out of asking for help.

Join us. Contact us for more information about teaching adults to read better.

Great Books for Children

Mother and Children Reading by Arthur Boyd Houghton 1860We think books make the very best gifts for kids (ages one to 92). So, we asked expert Shelley Lowe, Literacy Connexus board member and owner of Monkey and Dog Books in Fort Worth, how to excite the young readers on our lists.

Here is Shelley’s list of absolute treasures:

Ages 2-3
Hooray for Hat!       Brain Won
Press Here                 Hervehell Tuillet
Bark, George            Jules Feiffer

Ages 4-6
Miss Twiggly’s Tree        Dorothea Warren Fox
Tops and Bottoms           Janet Stevens
I don’t Like Koala!           Sean Ferrell

Early Readers
Frog and Toad Series        Arnold Lobel
The Big Honey Hunt          Stan and Jan Berenstain
Mercy Watson Series         Kate diCamillo
James to the Rescue           Elise Broach

Middle Reader Series (ages 8-10)
Ivy and Bean Series               Annie Barrow & Sophie Blackwell
Little House on the Prairie Series   Laura Ingalls Wilder
The Doll People Series            Ann Martin
Mrs. Piggle Wiggle Books     Betty McDonald
The One and Only Ivan          Katherine Applegate
The Penderwicks Series          Jeanne Birdsall

Older Reader (ages 10-12)
The False Prince                     Jennifer Nielsen
The Island of Dr. Libris        Chris Grabenstein
Under the Egg                        Laura Marx Fitzgerald
The CandyMakers                 Wendy Mass
Wonder                                    R.J. Palacio
Alabama Moon                      Watt Key

Monkey and Dog Books
3637 West Vickery Blvd., Fort Worth, TX  76107
Mon. – Fri.  10 a.m. – 5 p.m.
Sat.  10 a.m. – 2 p.m.