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Good News for August 16th


Dr. Omékongo Dibinga was a keynote speaker at the National Black Catholic Congress. His

company is Upstanding International (UI). It provides leadership and diversity presentations and training. Customers include corporations, non-profit organizations, educational institutions, and government groups. UI produces books and other multimedia products as well. They are geared towards motivating organizations and individuals to reach their full potential.

Dr. Dibinga is an international speaker, trilingual poet, TV talk show host, rapper, and professor of Intercultural Communication. He is a member of the faculty at American University. There heals o serves as a faculty affiliate to the Antiracist Research & Policy Center.

I found his talk tremendous. It was challenging, humorous, poetic, and pithy. He opened with a rap. It juxtaposed and encapsulated Black history, the contemporary Black experience, joys,

sorrows, hopes, and shadows. It defined much about what his company is about.

In other words: What is an UPstanding person? They are “people in the fuse” - burning, leading to an explosion that can help build (or destroy). He echoed the breakout session about using testimonies as tools for evangelization. He called black Catholics to be “The human ink that writes the story of our heritage.” In this, he echoed former (deceased) Auxiliary Bishop Fernand Joseph Cheri of New Orleans. The Bishop once said, “I sing a solo that becomes the canticle of the community.” Referencing that, one of Bishop Cherri’s favorite songs was “If anybody asks you who I am… just tell them I’m a child of God.”

Dr. Dibinga spoke of the poignant call to be people “Taking a seat on the bus line of grace.” We can do the difficult work because we have a relationship with Christ. “HE has endured the opposition against Him so that YOU will not grow weary.”

Dibinga asked, "What do you need to gain foresight - to improve your eyesight - to provide

insight?” He used the acronym “G.R.O.W.” to help you determine “What are your 3 strikes in


Give - vs an attitude of entitlement and complaining about what you’re getting or what society has not given you. Let people see the sermon (what you do) vs hearing one. Give and the world will give back to you.

Release - Life is not fair. Bad and unfair things will happen to you. Let it go. Let them go.

Forgiveness is the fragrance of the flower that is left on the heel that has crushed it.

A windshield is larger than a rearview mirror for a reason. It is because we are supposed to

spend more time looking forward than backward. Problems start when you spend time trying to blend in rather than trying to stand out. Life is binary. There is no middle ground. Either you - or they - are going up or going down. Don’t try to help bring people up. Lead by example - they’ll follow you.

Overcome - FEAR can stand for “Forget Everything And Run.” It can also stand for “False

Expectations Appearing Real.” Pray at your fear or fear will prey on you. Paying it forward helps overcome fear. You’re too busy moving forward to be afraid of what could happen.

W in and not give in. What’s your plan to achieve the GOAL? Not Go Out And Lose. Instead, GetOut And Live. Get Out And Love. Get Out And Learn.

For further reading:

The UPstander's Guide to an Outstanding Life Book (Dr. OmékongoDibinga. 2011. Free Your

Mind Publishing)

Lies about Black People: How to Combat Racist Stereotypes and Why It Matters (Prometheus Publishing, Dr. OmékongoDibinga, Published 2023)

Fr Charles Zlock, Pastor


Racism has distorted our vision for too long. The time to see one another as human is now. Two women of faith (one Black, one white) acknowledge the sin of racism and proclaim a way forward – together, with respect and kindness, rooted in the example and words of Jesus.

This day of reflection will name the reality of racism and its destructive impact on each of us. Storytelling, conversation, deep listening, and ritual will provide a basis for healing individually and as a Christian community.

Philadelphia, PA 19116




As more people have returned to in-person mass, we’ve had lots of questions about joining the choir at St Raymond. If you’d like to become a part of this amazing ministry, please reach out to our Director of Music, Kenny Arrington, at so that he can set up a time to meet and conduct a voice assessment to determine where your voice may fit. We’re looking for people who are moved to Praise God through song, are humble, patient, and able to commit to attending weekly practices and singing for our 10:00 mass.


Brothers and Sisters in Christ, As we approach the Solemnity of the Assumption (Aug 15), find an image of the Blessed Mother and spend 15 minutes of devotional silence in front of it. Place those you identified last week as being far from the Church under her mantle. Pray for them by name and ask Mary to intercede for them. ~Archbishop Pérez


Sunday, August 27th, after 10 am mass (time will be approx 12-1 pm).

Calling parents and youth to join our Youth Ministry and Event for 6th - 8th Graders. The first meeting, a Kick-Off Pizza Party, is Sunday, August 27th, after 10 am mass (time will be approx 12-1 pm). Come out to meet Brandi Whitehead, Youth Outreach Director, and the Team. You will hear about several upcoming ideas under consideration. And it is a good opportunity for the kids to meet each other.

Please RSVP to Brandi at 215-549-3760 or



SPECIAL COLLECTION, 9/3 Black and Native American Missions

This fundraising initiative was established as the first national collection for the Catholic Church in the United States in 1874. Since that time, it has proven itself to be a successful vehicle for sharing the resources of the Church’s members to provide for the unique cultural, pastoral, and temporal needs of our African American, Native American, and Alaskan Native sisters and brothers. Your support provides the presence of missionaries here in African American, Native American, and Alaskan Native missions, parishes, schools, religious education programs, and the many, many diocesan programs and projects that strengthen the work of the Gospel. Your partnership places Bibles and catechetical materials in the hands of priests, consecrated men and women, and lay leaders. Your sacrifice impacts pastoral work across the country and addresses the need to train catechists, permanent deacons, and seminarians for future generations here in many of our neighborhoods and backyards. Please be generous!


Are you interested in joining the Catholic faith? Do you know someone else who is? Are you Catholic but want to learn more about your faith? Or do you want to go deeper into your relationship with Christ and journey with others in a more intentional way?

The Order of Christian Initiation of Adults or OCIA (formerly RCIA or the Rite of Christian Initiation for Adults) Is a new structure meant to invite people on a path to Baptism, First Communion, and Confirmation.

OCIA is part of an ongoing journey of discipleship that will culminate with baptism and confirmation — usually during the Easter Vigil — but will continue throughout the person’s lives.

It is open to people who have never been baptized (known as “catechumens”) and people who are baptized but never received Confirmation and First Holy Communion (“candidates”)

But wait… there’s more!

It is also open for fully initiated Catholics who wish to do a committed deep dive into their faith. It might appeal to a committed Catholic wishing to develop a more intentional relationship with Christ within a community setting.


Join us for one of two Information Sessions. The first will be with Deacon Bill and Cindy Bradley on Sunday, August 20, at 12:30 PM (after Mass Hospitality in the Sister Rosemary Room underneath the rectory). The second is on Monday evening, August 21, at 7:00 PM with Fr. Charles Zlock in the Sister Rosemary Room. If you can not make either session, Contact Fr. Zlock or Deacon Bill at the rectory. Phone: (215) 549-3760


Fr Charles Zlock, Pastor



Eucharistic Revival – Join Us! Our world is hurting. We all need healing, yet many of us are separated from the very source of our strength. Jesus Christ invites us to return to the source and summit of our faith: his Real Presence in the Eucharist. The National Eucharistic Revival is a movement to restore understanding and devotion to this great mystery here in the United States. Stay up to date on our local celebration of the Eucharistic Revival at

  • Eucharistic Congress sign-up sheets are in the back of the church.



  • 8/20 = Mission Appeal

8/15 Tuesday Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary

8/20 Hospitality Sunday

8/27 Youth Ministry Kick-Off Pizza Party. Come out to meet Brandi Whitehead, Youth Outreach Director, and the Team. Please RSVP to Brandi at 215-549-3760 or

8/26 and 8/27 = Monthly Prayer Team after Mass (always last Sunday)

Submit your weekly collection envelopes during your summer vacation and travels…..We are counting on you!


The Men of St Raymond (Men’s Group) will be having a Meat Raffle Fundraiser! Tickets are $3.00 each or two @ $5.00 Tickets can be purchased in the rectory office or After Mass in the rear of the church.

Drawing will be Sunday, August 27

Proceeds to Benefit Parish Youth & School

Saturday, September 9

Event: Diaper and Baby Item Drive:

World's Greatest Baby Shower

Catholic Social Services will hold a Diaper and Baby Item Drive. There are two ways to give: scan the QR code (flyer) or purchase baby clothes and gear and drop them off or have them delivered to Amy Stoner at 222 N. 17 St,

Philadelphia, Pa 19103, 3rd floor.

More info: Please contact Amy Stoner at for more info!


August 15th Solemnity of the Assumption of Mary

On Aug. 15, Catholics around the world mark the Assumption of Mary, commemorating the end of her earthly life and assumption into heaven. But while the feast day, a solemnity, is a relatively new one, the history of the holiday — and the mystery behind it — has its roots in the earliest centuries of Christian belief. The Catholic Church teaches that when Mary ended her earthly life, God assumed her, body and soul, into heaven. The dogma of the Assumption of Mary — also called the “Dormition of Mary” in the Eastern Churches — has its roots in the early centuries of the Church.


The Saint Raymond Church family mourns the passing of Merle Heyward

Funeral Service Saturday, 9/9/2023 (Time TBD)


St Raymond is collecting School Supplies for the needs of the children in St Raymond School. We will be collecting Backpacks, pencils, crayons, lined paper & folders. If you can assist, please drop off all items in the back of the Church or the Rectory.

Thank you for your help.


Attention Ladies

Catholic Women’s Conference

Sat. Oct. 28, 2023

Registration Information Packets are located on the desk at the rear of the church. Please complete the pink form and return it to the basket provided to ensure that you are registered for the session of your choice. Please note you may only select one session.

Sign up early- the event fills up quickly!


Join us, Tuesday, August 29, from 4 pm-7 pm for our 2nd annual Meet and Greet BBQ for our St. Raymond Church and School families. Food, Games, and Music will be provided. To RSVP, please call the Rectory Office at 215-549-3760 or use the signup sheets in the back of the Church.


Family Faith Formation Classes (PREP)

Begins Sunday, September 17, 2023

Please note the new time & schedule.

On-site catechesis will be immediately following the 10:00 Mass on the 1st & 3rd Sundays of the month in the lower church. Parents are to attend these classes with their children. Classes will last 45 min to an hour.

At-home catechesis will be on the 2nd, 4th & 5th Sunday of the month. This new model of Catechizing children is based on Scripture: Deuteronomy 11:18-19. ” Fix these words of mine in your hearts and minds; tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your

foreheads. Teach them to your children, talking about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road when you lie down, and when you get up. Parents are the primary educators for their children, we are here to assist you in the process. If want to see a change in the world, it is up to this generation of children to bring it about. Train up a child in the way he should go; together, we can.

Let’s Just Do It!


St Raymond Church needs you!

Fr Charles Zlock has asked that you volunteer a minimum of 2 hours per month. How can you help? Please see below for a preliminary list of small, yet important activities.

Catechists; Faith Partners (RCIA); Altar server scheduling and training; Altar server robes (weekly straightens, regrouping, and periodic washing); Office volunteers: Administrative support like answering the phone and answering the door. Filling out sacramental forms for baptisms and Godparents. Ordering office and liturgical supplies. Office organization. Filing records and forms. Proofreading articles for the parish bulletin. Moving supplies to the church and office.

Mass slides operation; Camera operators; Ministry to the Sick (phone calls); Home visits to the sick report compiler, communication coordinator, etc;

Weekly exterior campus review with a follow-up report; Counting the collection; Caring for Friends assistant/ coordinator; Church Community Builder database update; ESL volunteers; and Certified drivers for the parish bus.

The engagement of parishioners is critical to leading to a St. Raymond that is alive, vibrant, and joyful. Please contact the rectory office at 215-549-3760, Or, contact a member of the staff directly (names, phone numbers, and email addresses are on the front page of the parish bulletin).



Monday Evenings, 8 PM

Event: Virtual World Mission Rosary

Join hundreds of people throughout the Archdiocese who have regularly been praying the ROSARY LIVE! United in this most powerful prayer, we ask for the miraculous intercession of the Blessed Virgin Mary to hear our intentions and renew our Catholic faith as we pray in unity for our brothers and sisters in mission lands worldwide. On Mission Mondays, we pray the World Mission Rosary, created by Venerable Fulton Sheen, in which we offer each decade for one of five Mission areas, including the US.

Location: Use this Zoom link to join each Monday:

More Info: Sponsored by the Pontifical Missions Societies (


Please log in to find out what is going on around the Archdiocese of Philadelphia.


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Terry Mendenhall
Terry Mendenhall
2023년 8월 17일

I can not thank you enough Father for writing the article concerning the talk you heard by Dr. Dibinga. It was the best I have ever read on the subject and your summary was excellent. I wish it could be sent to every parish...I have sent it to several people , including Sister Marietta in St. Dorothy's in Drexel Hill. Do not know if you know her, but hope you can meet her someday...a very special person.....thanks again...prayers continue for you and the parishoners andthose that ae not parishoners!!!......Terry

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