Owen Lenten Lectures 2023

Scroll down to watch videos from our newly appointed Bishop Ruben Saenz Jr.


Lovers of God Weep
Bishop Ruben Saenz Jr.
Luke 19:41-44


Lovers of God Withstand
Bishop Ruben Saenz Jr.
Luke 21:5-24


Lovers of God Watch
Bishop Ruben Saenz Jr.
Luke 21:25-37

Bishop Ruben Saenz Jr.

Bishop Ruben Saenz Jr

Bishop Ruben Saenz Jr. is a native of South Texas and a lifelong United Methodist. He was elected bishop at the 2016 South Central Jurisdictional Conference and was assigned to the Great Plains Conference, effective September 1, 2016.

While serving as resident bishop of the Great Plains Conference, Bishop Saenz was also assigned to provide episcopal coverage for the Central Texas Conference, beginning January 1, 2022.

Effective January 1, 2023, Bishop Saenz was assigned as resident bishop of both the Central Texas Conference and the North Texas Conference.

In his role as an episcopal leader in Kansas and Nebraska, Bishop Saenz led three former conferences through a unification process that began in 2014. Under his leadership, the conference focused on the four pillars of a robust ministry and witness for Jesus Christ in the Wesleyan tradition: Love God; proclaim Christ; serve others, especially the poor; and seek justice.
Bishop Saenz is a graduate of Stephen F. Austin State University in Nacogdoches, Texas, and a former high school teacher, high school football coach, and businessperson. He earned his Master of Divinity and Doctor of Ministry degrees from Perkins School of Theology at Southern Methodist University. As a pastor, he focused his ministry on intentional spiritual practice and formation, developing a lay apostolate, and giving people the tools and encouragement to move out of generational poverty. He served congregations in East Dallas, Oak Cliff Dallas, El Paso, and Edinburg, Texas. El Buen Pastor—The Good Shepherd—in Edinburg, Texas, was the largest Hispanic-American United Methodist Church in the country during his pastoral tenure.
In 2010, he was appointed to serve as the Southwest Texas director of congregational and new church development, and he helped start 11 new churches before being named director of the conference connectional ministries and executive director of the Rio Texas Conference’s Mission Vitality Center in January 2015. In that role, he oversaw the conference’s missional strategies and objectives for congregational vitality, starting new churches, clergy and lay leadership vitality, uniting people, and transforming communities. 
Bishop Saenz has been married to Maye since 1981. They have four children and nine grandchildren, with one on the way.

The Owen Lenten Lectures are endowed through the generosity of Babs and Arch Owen and were established in 1985. Arch Owen was the first president of the LLUMC Foundation and it was his great vision that recognized the need for an endowment to support, in perpetuity, Lovers Lane United Methodist Church, its Ministry, Outreach, and Evangelism.

Arthur Lee Owen passed away on February 21, 2010; Babs enthusiastically supported Lovers Lane and the Lecture Series until the end of her fruitful life on December 7, 2021, just shy of her 104th birthday.  The Foundation Board of Directors holds immense gratitude for Babs and Arch Owen for their steadfast generosity and loyalty and hopes these lectures will enhance your time of renewal during this Easter Season.

To learn more about supporting our Lovers Lane UMC Foundation, click here.