Does coming to mass bring you joy? Are you filled with gratitude, humbled and open to His grace? Are you strengthened by this intimate relationship with Christ through the Eucharist? Yes?? So show it! Take that smile, that sense of peace, the love that embraces you through worship and share it with another!
We are called to be in community, welcoming everyone along the path, bringing them closer to the beautiful mysteries of our faith. How could you be doing this? Pray about it and consider joining in our welcoming efforts as they get re-visioned this fall.
Connect with Janet Schirripa to hear more about what we’d like to be doing. Respond to Christ’s call to welcome the stranger and help them take a first step here at St. Raphael. Reach Janet at 865.5704 or email@example.com
Want to share your faith, read a good book, and make some new friends? Come join us (The Sisters’ Book Group), a group of lay women who strive to broaden our understanding of the spiritual life. We read and discuss books that help us in this quest. Meetings are on the 2nd & 4th Wednesday of the month from 1-3 pm at St. Raphael. Authors we have read: Henri Nouwen, C. S. Lewis , Richard Rohr, Paul Coutinho, Mitch Albon, Wm. Paul Yound, Gerard W. Hughes.
We are currently reading The Road to Character by David Brooks.
Would you like to share your sewing talents, in support of our Summer Vacation Bible Camp? We’re in need of some costume and prop construction and we’d love to put you to work! All supplies will be provided; we merely need your time and talent! Contact Linda to explore the possibilities! firstname.lastname@example.org or call 865-5715
This Jesuit trip includes visits to Loyola, San Sebastian, Montserrat, and Barcelona. Trip leaders: Fr. George Witt, S.J., Provincial Assistant for Spiritual Ministries, Maryland & USA Northeast Provinces of the Society of Jesus, and Mr. Joe Naylor, Provincial Assistant for Advancement and Communications, Maryland & USA Northeast Provinces of the Society of Jesus. Prices start at $3,899 (if paid by check)/$4,098 (if paid by credit card). Accommodations, sightseeing, and meals are included. To download a brochure, visit GoCatholicTravel.com/NaylorWitt. For more information, contact Joe Naylor at email@example.com or call 212-774-5529. Spain and Lourdes Flier
From this post on down you can read about previous events at Saint Raphael.
JUSTICE FOR IMMIGRANTS— “I wish to address a word to you, who walk alongside migrant children and young people: they need your precious help. The Church too needs you and supports you in the generous service you offer.
Do not tire of courageously living the Gospel, which calls you to recognize and welcome the Lord Jesus among the smallest and most vulnerable.
I entrust all child migrants, their families, their communities and you who are close to them, to the protection of the Holy Family of Nazareth; may they watch over and accompany each one on their journey. With my prayers, I gladly impart my Apostolic Blessing.”
… Pope Francis, Message for World Day of Migrants and Refugees 2017
Did you notice there’s a large green table in the center of the atrium? Have you stopped to say ‘hi’ to a Welcome Table host or to look at some of the materials? We’re in the early stages of developing the Welcome table into a great resource for you; a place to ask questions, register as a member, figure out what’s going on around here, learn your way around the buildings, or maybe even meet a new friend. Big parishes can be busy and exciting places, but they can also be anonymous and overwhelming. And that’s if you’re comfortable being in a Catholic church! What if you’re just sticking your toe in the water and exploring? Stop by and introduce yourself to a Welcome Table host. Whatever the reason you’re here, we’ll celebrate it and work to make this a comfortable place for you. Have a question outside of the weekend? Give Janet Schirripa, Lay Ministry Support Coordinator a call and she’ll help you out. 865.5704 firstname.lastname@example.org
One of God’s commandments is connected to it: ‘You shall not wrong a stranger or oppress him, for you were strangers in the land of Egypt’ (Exodus 22:21); ‘Love the sojourner therefore; for you were sojourners in the land of Egypt’ (Deuteronomy 10:19).
This phenomenon constitutes a sign of the times, a sign which speaks of the providential work of God in history and in the human community, with a view to universal communion.” … Pope Francis
The Welcome Ministry is having a Welcome Reception in the Lewis Room on Sunday, June 11 at 12:30 PM (after 11:30 Mass). All newly registered parishioners and all prospective members are encouraged to come to share fellowship and to learn about the wonderful services that St. Raphael provides. Refreshments will be served. If you have any questions about this reception, please contact Arlene Cocco at email@example.com
Here’s the ‘want ad’ job description for a wonderful way to be concretely helpful to others as they come to St. Raphael. If you are full of joy, outgoing, ready to greet others with a big smile and make genuine connections than you’re needed at our new Welcome Table. Periodically, at the Mass of your choice, join with others at the Welcome Table to greet, answer questions, pray with, encourage others as they explore St. Raphael as their parish home. 15 minutes before and after Mass, as an individual or even as a family. You do not need to be an expert on St. Raphael or a long time member, we’ll have the resources for you. To learn more, stop by the table to talk to a host or call Janet Schirripa, Lay Ministry Support Coordinator at 919-865-5704 firstname.lastname@example.org
Did you notice the new Welcome Table in the atrium at Easter? Have you had a chance to stop by to look at some of the resources or to talk to a volunteer host? Over the next several weeks/summer we hope to develop this resource for everyone’s use. Perhaps you’re new to the parish or returning to church after several years. Maybe you need someone to point you toward the right staff member/ministry or you might have a question about an event. Need help finding the Lewis Room or the office? Think of the Welcome Table as a concierge service, we’ll try to answer questions and get you settled here at the parish.
This will work best when we have built a dedicated crew of outgoing joyful hosts to staff the Welcome table for each mass. Think you might have that smile? Could you help periodically? You don’t need to be an expert, we’ll have all the resources. What you do need to be is joyful and ready to celebrate each person’s decision to connect with the parish on their faith journey. Stop by the table and talk to a volunteer host or connect with Janet Schirripa, Lay Ministry Support Coordinator at 919-865-5704 email@example.com.
CORRECTED SET OF APRIL GIVING ENVELOPES – Please check your April giving envelopes. You should have received a corrected set in the mail. Due to an error by the envelope printing company, the second collection envelope for Easter Sunday was incorrectly printed.
The Easter Sunday Second Collection – April 15-16 is for the Priests Welfare and Retirement fund to support the retired and disabled priests in our Diocese. Thank you for your generosity and support. You can also give to the Priest Welfare and Retirement Fund online, either one-time or automatically. Please click here https://saintraphael.org/about-us/contribute-to-the-parish/ for more information.
“As a Catholic bishop speaking to my own faith community, I pray for a generous spirit and a sense of mercy for those in need of protection and care. Through the work of Catholic Relief Services abroad and Catholic Charities at home, we are proudly on the front lines of services to refugees and immigrants. This work is inherent in the mission given us by Jesus Christ. We seek to do what is just and right for the fellow members of our human family, advocating for the support that will help us to improve our programs and services to those in need. …..
A series of reflections for the parish on Pope Francis’ The Joy of the Gospel
Part 16: Developing and Deepening The Church is herself a missionary disciple; she needs to grow in her interpretation of the revealed word and in her understanding of truth. It is the task of exegetes and theologians to help “the judgment of the Church to mature”.* The other sciences also help to accomplish this, each in its own way. With reference to the social sciences, for example, John Paul II said that the Church values their research, which helps her “to derive concrete indications helpful for her magisterial mission”.** … At the same time, today’s vast and rapid cultural changes demand that we constantly seek ways of expressing unchanging truths in a language which brings out their abiding newness. “The deposit of the faith is one thing… the way it is expressed is another…”***
In The Joy of the Gospel, we’ve heard Pope Francis invite us to try new methods of seeking to live out the mission of the church. I’ve been enriched greatly as a pastor by taking him up on that invitation and looking into some best practices for parishes. One of the things many pastors have found helpful is a leadership team of people in key positions with ability to communicate across various parts of a parish, who have a broad range and balance of strengths. At big parishes this team usually consists of
Feast of the Holy Family – Dec 30 PRINT
On December 9th Pope Francis offered his annual blessing of the nativity scene in St. Peter’s Square. In his remarks he encouraged the faithful to remember today’s migrants when looking at the crèche. He drew a familiar parallel between the experience of a refugee and the birth of Jesus. “In the painful experience of these brothers and sisters, we revisit that experience of the baby Jesus,” said the Holy Father, “who at the time of his birth did not find accommodation and was born in a grotto in Bethlehem and then was brought to Egypt to escape Herod’s threat.”
Today many immigrant families live in vulnerable situations. Like the Holy Family, they face rejection and often have to flee dangerous threats. Many of us come into contact with these families who live in the shadows, fearing separation, detention, deportation and limited participation in our communities. And on this feast we remember that all families are holy in God’s eyes.
When we hear of the violence and turmoil that a few have provoked around the world, it is understandable why some seek policies and protective measures to calm such fear. But Pope Francis challenges us never to act solely out of fear.