Look Back,

Look Forward

There’s an old gospel song that I listen to frequently (more people should listen to throwback gospel music!) by Marvin Sapp, “Never Would Have Made It.”

As I was reflecting on writing this, that song was playing in my ears, and I thought, how appropriate! God has done so much through our church during this year. For quick perspective, when this fiscal year started, we were still at Westover. God has done a lot! Many of those stories of what God has done you will see below. I hope they genuinely help you rejoice and help you remember that what we’re doing here, what you’re doing here, matters. Thank you!

Moving ahead we feel like God is both rebuilding individuals in our church and rebuilding our church collectively. Having just finished our Ezra series, laying out exactly what we feel like God is calling us into, we believe as we rebuild there will be beautiful joy exploding through and for our people, and in and through our church. I’m praying that we would see this as truer than ever before.


As I think about making Eastside our home and making an impact in this school, neighborhood, in Central Austin, in Austin, and through planting and sending in the states and nations, I’m genuinely excited and encouraged. I feel healed, by the Lord. I feel like He is wanting to move and display His power and beauty through us. That even though locusts and darkness may still be present or will come, that as that old gospel song says, “I’m stronger, I’m wiser, I’m better, much better…” and that it is a testament to what God is going to do through us.

My biggest prayer this year is that you, each individual reading this, would be so desperately in love with Jesus by the end of this year (like, more than ever before), that you can’t help but to give your entire life over to Him. That through this love, many others would meet our Messiah. That many others would fall more in love with our King. That our church would be a part of genuinely shifting the spiritual landscape in our families, in our city, and in this world, for the sake of His glory.

He is worthy, worthy, worthy. Thank you for being a part of our church. I’m excited for this next year.

Let’s make much of Jesus!

Tory Mayo

Lead Pastor



When we think of celebrations, typical images that come to mind include party balloons, birthday cakes, happy anniversaries, and presents. However, as a church, our celebrations are filled with roars of rejoicing as we witness individuals accepting the greatest gift ever given to them: salvation and new life in Christ.


Throughout this past year, we came together on three different Sundays, what we call Celebration Sundays, for these life-changing festivities.


Baptism, an outward act of inward faith in Jesus, symbolizes our trust in Him alone for salvation. As a church community, we honor this profession of faith through celebration. Baptism is a significant occasion that allows us to witness and acknowledge how the Lord has renewed and redeemed the entirety of a person’s life. This year, during all three of our Celebration Sundays, we had the privilege to celebrate 34 individuals being baptized and made new in Jesus Christ. Yes, 34 baptisms! Allow us to share one of the testimonies from this year’s baptisms:


“I want to get baptized to celebrate the change that God has brought about in my life, because, in almost every imaginable way, my life HAS changed. I now have a real purpose, and I have found victory from all the sins that used to trap me. I still struggle in a lot of ways, but the life and peace and joy of knowing Jesus has forever changed who I am. I’m going to be forever thankful for Jesus and the sacrifice that he made out of love for me, because by his wounds, I have been healed.”


This is just one of thirty-four testimonies shared with the church body this year. Thirty-four individual lives that have been forever changed by the blood of Christ. Lives that were seeking satisfaction in alcohol, drugs, and recognition from others; lives that doubted the existence of Jesus; lives that were lost; lives chained by shame, brokenness, and purposelessness. Each of these lives has been buried with Christ in His death and raised to new life through the act of baptism.


As we reflect on this year’s celebration-filled Sundays, we are thankful for each and every individual’s testimony and their decision to be baptized. These celebrations serve as powerful reminders for us, the people of God, of all the ways the Lord has redeemed us to Himself.




This past year has been one of immense transition, replanting, and reestablishment for our church.


As we emerged from a painful chapter and season of pruning as a congregation, we experienced much change and upheaval, yet through it all we fixed our eyes on Christ, the one constant in the midst of seasons of change.


We began this fiscal year midway into our “Partners in the Gospel” series. During this series, we walked through our disctinctive of serving of church: that the church is not built on the talents of a few, but rather on the sacrifices of many; we are each called to be partners in advancing the gospel mission through our local church community. Hearing from faithful friends and laborers for the kingdom encouraged and equipped us for the road ahead as we looked with expectancy toward a new season.


With anticipation of coming change from a previous difficult season as a church, in September, we embarked on an expositional study through the synoptic gospels in our “Uniquely Jesus” series.


By pulling out stories that only one individual author discusses within each gospel account, we reflected on how we each relate to Jesus in unique ways, yet come together as one body. Walking through the richness of the gospel narratives grounded us in who Jesus is, reminding us that He is the one constant amidst any season of transition, including the move into our new Eastside home.


As we settled into Eastside, January brought us into our “Mountains and Valleys” series, which poignantly addressed various topics needed for the health, maturity, and discipleship of our church in this moment.


Focusing on themes like spiritual warfare, anxiety, doubt, suffering, and sabbath, these reflections were instrumental in bringing healing from painful valleys we had walked through as a church, and God met us in our need for renewal.


In February, we studied the book of Acts and the early church in our “Multiply” series. By examining the first believers and how the church grew despite opposition, we were reminded of our own calling to make disciples and embrace the multiplication DNA that is inherent in God’s mission.


Even in seasons of hardship, the church is designed to increase and flourish for God’s glory.


Spring brought a study through our Song of Solomon series, “Loved to Death,” where we gained wisdom for relationships, marriage, and intimacy. Every few years it is important for a church as young as ours to do a series on relationships because of the significance they play in our lives. This poetic book provided guidance for the various seasons of life represented in our congregation. It also gave us a glimpse of Christ’s intimate love for His church through its beautiful imagery.


We are now journeying out of a period of replanting into a new season of reestablishing and rebuilding our church, and our current series in Ezra will anchor us in truth. Just as Israel was rebuilding the temple after exile, so we too now desire to reestablish our church on Christ’s firm foundation and rekindle our zeal and joy in Him. Ezra’s example of courageous leadership, life of prayer, love for God’s Word, passion for justice, and call to sacrificial obedience provides clear modeling for how we can thrive and flourish in our new season as a church.


This year equipped us for renewal both personally and corporately as the body of Christ. Through seasons of change, both painful and hopeful, our Good Shepherd remains the same yesterday, today, and forever. We walk forward into the future in hope, anchored to the eternal Rock who makes all things new.


As we look back, we affirm God’s faithfulness through it all. As we look ahead, we cling to Him, asking for grace to mature and fulfill the mission He has for our church.

Kids and Student


The year is winding down for us and we couldn’t be more thrilled when we think about all the work the Lord has done.


Our events for our kiddos were amazing! From Trunk or Treat to Mom’s Panel with families and friends. Mother-Son Movie Night and Daddy-Daughter Dance were a blast! Finally, for a grand finale, our second year of VBS was another success! We had so many kiddos join us for three days of traveling around the world to see what God has done and is doing through his disciples and the church! For day one, we took a dive into the scripture to figure out “what is the Gospel?”; day two, we heard stories about missionaries and people from scripture that helped us answer the question, “what are disciples?” On the last day we got to answer “what and who is the church?” Us, and the “big C” church.


Our kids got a small taste of God’s sovereignty among all of the nations: past, present, and future. Revelation 7:9 tells us about the future kingdom of God worshiping, “a great multitude that no one could count, from every nation, tribe, people, and language, standing before the throne and before the Lamb.”

We know that so many little seeds have been planted in our kiddos hearts and minds. Some of them may be our future church planters, future pastors, and teachers. They will be the ones to make disciples, they will be the ones to plant churches in all of the nations, ushering in Christ Jesus’ return.


We are planning for another year of bringing these kids to the feet of Jesus, as was happening in Matthew 19:13, where Jesus says, “Let the little children come to me.” We desire these three things: to continue in partnership with our Well Kids parents and families to worship Jesus for who he is, disciple our kids as they continue to learn and grow in faith, and trust that Jesus’ work on the cross was with every single one of them in mind. It is clear that our God is blessing our church and we want to continue to be a part of the work the Lord is doing, calling us into community with one another—as they say “It takes a village”.


God is also doing amazing things in the lives of our 6th–12th graders at The Well. We had the opportunity to spend three days in Giddings, Texas, at our first-ever Spring Retreat during the last weekend of April.


Our students had the chance to go canoeing, participate in axe throwing, experience the zipline on the ropes course, and engage in various other outdoor activities.


Throughout the weekend, we worshipped, prayed, and delved into God’s Word as a group. The Lord blessed us with lifelong memories, which we hope will evolve into cherished traditions of future retreats.


Our Student Ministry also had a successful semester with our Midweek Gatherings. Every Wednesday evening, our students gathered in the church offices to spend quality time with our adult leaders. During these gatherings, we prayed and sought to embody the four qualities we see from the early church in Acts 2:42—breaking bread, fellowship, teaching from the Word, and prayer. Our focus has been on the power of our words and the importance of finding our identity in Jesus.


Our students have been having a great time in Ezra as we have been asking the question, “what does it look like to build our Student Ministry?” and asking the students, “what kind of environment in our events do we want to build?”

It has been refreshing to hear their answers; we want our students to feel safe, loved, and comfortable to invite their friends to Sunday Gatherings.


While we continue to build off our retreats and midweek gatherings in Spring, we cannot wait to disciple this group of students to exalt Christ in the Fall!



This past year, we had the privilege of sending off our first graduating class!


These students have been with us since our freshman year as a ministry, and theirs as students. We were so excited to see them take the seeds that God had planted in them in their college years and see them flourish outside the four walls of The University of Texas. Although we wanted to stoke an excitement over what God was going to do next, we wanted to set our student’s eyes on the character of God and how he was leading them forward by reminding them of how faithful he had already been. In that vein, a major theme of this past year was reflection. We offered our students time and opportunity to remember and meditate on God’s work in their lives in their college years with the hope that it would build their confidence that he would remain the same now, and post-baccalaureate.


A major effort in that direction was our retreats, particularly our spring retreat. The theme was “Rest, Remember, and Reflect,” and it was an opportunity to practice Sabbath as a ministry and spend time in the presence of our faithful God. Through this, we remembered the faithfulness of Jesus in how he had brought a number of these students to faith, and brought them together as the body of Christ—and in some cases brought them together as marriages. Students reflected on how God had deepened their trust in him in ways that they may have never even thought about before that weekend, and were able to walk into their final week of finals with their eyes dead set on Jesus, and how he would bring them through that and whatever came next.


As well as wanting to be faithful to remind them of the marks God had already made on their lives, we wanted to set them up for faithfulness in the future. This culminated in our Beyond College Intensive. This was an effort to equip our seniors with tools they would need to navigate the major transition that would be stepping out of undergraduate studies and into the life of a young working professional. The class took place over the course of three weeks and went over practical tools that would empower the students to steward that transition well. In addition to equipping them practically through the curriculum, we had panels that were composed of covenant members at The Well who we saw as someone who knew had to navigate particular facets of adulthood well.


Our hope was that these panelists would exist, not only as a resource to the students, but that by connecting them with our students, the students would be further knit to the life of the local church. The students were especially excited about these covenant member panels as it gave them the assurance that their church body was there to walk with them as they experienced major life changes.


God has been so faithful to us in this past year and it only makes us more excited for how he is working in this coming year! Our hope is to connect with 500+ students during UT’s Welcome Week activities. Out of these students, a small portion of them will connect with us long term, but we are confident that God is giving us this time to put students in our path that are spiritually open and hungry as he calls people to himself. As well as Welcome Week, we will be hosting continuing events throughout the semester in order to create contact points for us to meet students on campus.


The fall semester will be focused on evangelism, so as we identify students who are open to hearing about Jesus, we will offer them invitations to Discovery Bible Studies.

These studies are a space for students who are curious about faith to hear the word of God and ask honest questions as scripture challenges their ideas about Jesus and life in this world.


The vision is that as God sparks curiosity about faith, students will choose to give their lives over to following Christ and that we can help them navigate that new walk. With this in mind, we hope to launch Discipleship Groups in the Spring!


As we see students grow in a hunger to know Jesus more deeply, we will prayerfully invite them to jump deeper into what it means to be a part of Christ’s kingdom. These will be small group cohorts that follow The Well’s overall vision for making disciples in the city of Austin, and serve to make sure we not only make converts, but make disciples who love Jesus and know how to follow him holistically in every facet of life.



This past year was no different: our Community Groups (CGs) continue to be the backbone of our church family!


The resilience and dedication of our
CGs have been awe-inspiring, serving as the strong foundation that binds the majority of our Covenant Members together and extending a strong presence across the city of Austin. Our CGs have provided a space for numerous individuals to come together each week, fostering biblical community where they worship Christ through the study of Scriptures, prayer, and the breaking of bread (Acts 2:42).


Amidst the various changes our church has undergone, from shifts in our staff team and to relocating back to the Eastside, it’s heartening to witness that many of our CG Shepherds have remained steadfast and unwavering in their commitment to shepherding and caring for the spiritual growth of everyone in our congregation. Their faithfulness has been the bedrock that has enabled our church to persist and continue seeking Christ in every aspect of our lives, and their dedication has sparked a positive ripple effect, leading to the flourishing of many aspects within our CGs.


To support our growing groups, we welcomed nearly 20 new Shepherds and three new Coaches in the past year, including two brand new CGs. Additional resources, classes, and other structural support was also introduced to many men and women in our church this summer, in hopes that the Lord may be calling some to step in to lead a CG in the future.


As we reflect on the closing of this remarkable year, we can’t help but be overwhelmed with gratitude for all that God has accomplished within our CGs. The transformation, spiritual growth, and deep connections that have blossomed within these groups are a testament to God’s grace and work in our midst.


CGs have truly been the lifeblood of our church, fostering a sense of genuine biblical community where individuals are nurtured in their faith and relationship with Christ. We stand in great expectation for the future, as we sense that we are on the brink of witnessing even more extraordinary multiplication and spiritual fruit to come—all for the glory of God alone.




Well Said


This spring, we launched our own podcast, “Well Said”, and have recorded 10 episodes to date!


“Well Said” is hosted by Mary and Tory, and every other week they aim to equip our church with knowledge and confidence to apply a biblical perspective to today’s topics while building and strengthening connections within our church.


In our first episode, we discussed pursuing biblical community even when relationships are difficult. Sharing hardships in their own relationship, Mary and Tory reflected on reconciling despite wounds, being angry without sinning, and the power of forgiving others.


Racial reconciliation was the focus of episode two. We believe God created a diverse universe to display his complexity. Therefore, honoring cultural differences allows us to honor God’s creation.


Episode three reintroduced our Scripture reading tool, E.F.A.P. This acronym stands for Example, Fulfillment, Atonement, and Power, four lenses to read Scripture through to see how it points to Jesus.


In episode four, we shifted to parenting which we see as a call to multiplication and making disciples. Though challenging, parenting is a privilege and impacts generations.


Episode five tackled spiritual warfare. We acknowledged the reality of spiritual forces seeking to thwart God’s plans and people. Episode six built on this by emphasizing we can’t be neutral in this spiritual battle. We must push back the darkness through loyal obedience to God.


Finally, episode seven encouraged listeners to understand their giftings and calling which God has prepared for them. Utilizing our passions, community affirmation, and examples from Scripture, we can walk in how God has gifted us.


We’re excited to be recording the last four episodes for this season where we’ll talk about lament, discipleship, serving the city, and also answer our listener submitted questions! Make sure to turn on your notifications on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, YouTube, and SoundCloud to be alerted when new episodes are released.


If you want to learn more, submit an icebreaker, or share your ideas, visit thewellaustin.com/podcast.



The Lord has been moving in power this past year. As we pray and ask the Lord of the harvest to send out more laborers into His harvest (Luke 10:2), we are asking to see 100 international church plants in the first 50 years of existence of The Well.


To see this come into fruition, we need faithful laborers to be sent out by the power of the Holy Spirit. We also need a team of people who can lead the charge on fulfilling this vision. There is much to celebrate and it is difficult to capture in one place. This year we had 43 men and women go on a total of 7 short-term teams overseas. These teams are an opportunity for the body to experience the kingdom of God in different parts of the world. We also had 29 people participate in a Disciple-Making Intensive (DMI), where they were given equipping for sharing their faith and spent consistent time praying for the lost. In the early Spring, there was a Missions Intensive where we had 70 people show up to worship Jesus and hear more about His heart for all peoples. There was also 11 individuals who completed the Goer Missional Community to take next steps toward going overseas. Lastly, in collaboration with the College ministry and other ministry leaders, we hosted our first Summer Sunday Worship Night at Eastside High School where over 150 people gathered to worship, pray and exalt the Lord together. We desire to be a body marked by prayer and worship and out of an overflow of love for Christ, we hope through spaces like worship nights, empower our church to obey wherever the Lord is calling them and be sensitive to the Spirit’s guidance.


Our prayer moving forward as a leadership team is to engage the entirety of the church with a heart for the nations. We desire that every covenant member sees him or herself as an ambassador of the gospel among the nations. Our prayer is that every covenant member is a faithful disciple-maker of the nations.


As we look forward to FY 2024, the missions team will have much transition. We will have a Missions Director, Missions Coordinator and 3 Missions Mobilizers. This upcoming Fall, we will have a class called the Mission of God, which is a class that gives a Biblical overview of the Missio Dei (Mission of God). We also plan to host another Missions Intensive and DMIs in the Spring of 2024. Pray that the Holy Spirit sets apart men and women for the work of international church planting from our church (Acts 13:1-3). We believe that He will do it!




Meeting in a school provides The Well
with the opportunity to serve the faculty and care for the student body in meaningful ways.


In the past, we have engaged in various activities such as “The Giving Tree,” painting numbers in the parking lot (images to the right), and purchasing prom tickets for the senior class, which have been highly participated in. At the beginning of the school year, many organizations come together to serve students with clothes and backpacks. However, we decided to take our serving efforts in a different direction.


In August, we partnered with Eastside High School’s principal to support the teachers in two significant ways. First, as a community, we helped teachers move in and set up their classrooms for the new school year—a task they typically do alone. Being part of the teachers’ lives on those days, it was evident that they sacrifice a lot to ensure their students have a supportive learning environment, often having to personally fund the items necessary to create the best possible classroom for their students.


This presented another chance for The Well to assist them: we asked teachers to provide a “wish list” of classroom items they needed. In collaboration with their assistant principal, we determined the top five items required for their classes and students. With the generous support of The Well’s members, we were able to fulfill most of these requests, making the upcoming school year more enjoyable for the students.


What many of us at The Well are also unaware of is the makeup of the student body at Eastside. A significant portion of the students are refugees from various countries, particularly Honduras and
El Salvador. Additionally, there is a growing population of homeless students—according to the school’s definition. For this reason, we will be introducing a mentorship program in the fall to support struggling students who may not have a supportive home structure that encourages learning.


We are excited about the opportunity to build meaningful relationships with the students, their caregivers, and the inspiring teachers through this initiative.


Stay tuned for updates after the first grading period in October­—we are excited to share more information about this service opportunity!



During our two weeks traveling all over Egypt, our team got to see first-hand what God is doing.


Cairo, the capital city of Egypt, is drawing a lot of Sudanese refugees who are being ministered to through humanitarian outreaches. On top of Mt. Sinai, our team met a professor from South Korea who is helping in these efforts. God is using our host team led by Tim & Ingrid to build loving relationships to reach tour guides, drivers, neighbors and even disciple Coptic Christians in Alexandria. One common thing that stood out throughout all of Egypt was the lack of hostility towards the Gospel; although Egypt is an Islamic country, most people seem to be quite open to spiritual conversations, some of which are shared below.



Our team was blessed to meet Ola, one of our tour guides in Aswan. God set up a perfect way for one of our team members (Rebecca Williams) to connect with her through their experience of divorce. They were in the truck waiting for the rest of us to come back from touring an old temple in the scorching Aswan desert. Rebecca noticed her rings and one of them was an infinity ring—she was wearing it on her wedding ring finger. Rebecca asked her where she got it and she said her friend gave it to her after her divorce.


Rebecca also bought an infinity ring after her divorce, and shared with Ola that for her, it symbolizes God’s everlasting love for her, and that His promise is that He will never stop loving her, ever, and that her ring is reminder of this. Ola began tearing up, and it was a really sweet moment between the two of them. Rebecca is still currently texting her and hopes to form a friendship.



Feriel is a mid-50s woman in Alexandria who talked to the ladies on our team for two hours. She gave them a no-filter version of Egypt, ranging from the fact that people take bribes to pass driving tests, to the fact that until recently women were killed if they had premarital sex. As their time was winding down one of our team members (Abigel Del Pozo)boldly asked Feriel at the end of their conversation if there was anything they could pray for. She was initially reluctant but agreed to let our team pray for her.


Raquel Cordivari also had the honor of praying over Feriel’s shoulder for healing. Raquel shared with us that as she prayed, she could feel the Holy Spirit’s presence in that room. The fact that this Muslim woman from Egypt would let a group of American Christians, (that she doesn’t really know), pray over her, is a huge win!



Before heading to Egypt, Travis started taking Arabic lessons online with a young man from Cairo. His goal wasn’t to become fluent in Arabic but to make a connection with someone he could meet while in Egypt.


God opened the door for Travis and another team member (Andrew Schmitz) to meet Ahmed, Travis’ Arabic tutor. They met up with him to have coffee in downtown Cairo. He walked us all around showing us places and explaining some of Egyptian culture. After walking a little in the blazing sun, we walked by a Krispy Kreme 🌝 There, they sat down and Ahmed began to share his story with Andrew and Travis. Both of his parents have passed away; his mother was a Messianic Jew and his father was a Muslim. Ahmed is more of an agnostic; not really believing in anything. After sharing an Uber and hearing his story, Ahmed let Andrew and Travis pray over him right there on the streets of downtown Cairo!

Ahmed and Travis are still meeting up for language exchange.


Meena & Michael

One of the highlights for a few of our team members (Antonio Del Pozo & Henna McRae) was the conversation they had with two local Coptic Christians (Meena & Michael) that our host Tim is discipling.


These men shared with us how in the past, Coptic Christians would never evangelize, but that this is something they are desiring to grow in. Historically, Coptic Christians have faced persecution and therefore have focused on internal care of its members. One big prayer Meena and Michael have for the believers in Egypt is that they would be bolder in sharing their faith and be led by the Spirit—not only for themselves but for the whole Coptic Church.


Join us in continuing to pray for Egypt and for the gospel to be proclaimed, for believers to begin growing in evangelism. Pray for Ola, Feriel, Ahmed, Meena, and Michael!



As we approach the end of our fiscal year, I am reminded of God’s continued provision for the Well. We have so much to be thankful for! One of those was moving back to the Eastside of Austin last November. We are now able to gather for worship on Sunday mornings, at an incredible facility at Eastside Early College Highschool, where God has allowed us to develop a true partnership with Principal Bailey and his administrative team. The stories of life change that have already taken place at Eastside have been humbling and looking forward to building on this we move into the new year.


August will mark the end of our fiscal year and while we wait for end of year financials, I can share our YTD financial position as of June (our current finalized financials) and then projections for what we see happening in 2023–24. From your generosity, we received $1.90 MM to the General Fund. This represents a 3% increase in giving over the same time last year.  However, when adjusted for a large one-time gift in December, giving is down 2% compared to 2022. With general fund giving below forecast by 7%, we are continuing to manage expenses through our giving and reserves to ensure that our financial obligations are being met.

Our unrestricted reserves are currently at $934,000 (not inclusive of our operational reserve of $325,000). The use of the unrestricted reserves has been approved to cover the costs associated with the move to Eastside and the additional space we have added at the office. The build out of the worship environment in the gymnasium at Eastside is nearing completion and with these changes we will be able to add to the worship experience and reduce set-up and tear-down time. We are looking forward to sharing these changes with Eastside Administration to support their special events.


With the current giving trend, we are estimating to finish the 2022–23 fiscal year at $2.2MM compared to $2.14MM in 2022. As we work to be faithful stewards of God’s resources, we are building next year’s operating budget to reflect a small growth in giving to the general fund.


We covet your prayers for God’s continued financial provision and thank you for your generosity that has allowed us to press into our vision for Austin and around the world.


Paul Carlson

Executive Director & Elder