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Good News for December 6th

So how do your "change-oriented disciples" deal with criticism and critique? They allow the mind of Christ to guide them. First, they begin to pray for their critics. It might not result in the transformation of the critic. Yet it is more about the transformation of the disciple. Second, they do not dwell on criticism. They move forward. Third, they spend their time on outwardly-focused activities. These disciples are too busy focusing on others and reaching into the community. They do not have time to dwell on negative talk. They are also continuous learners. They are reading books, attending conferences, scouring the internet, and being part of a learning community. They are always focusing intellectually outward to improve themselves.

This hard work is never finished. It is ongoing. Change-disciples are in it for the long journey. After making the attempt to improve internally, change-disciples move the focus externally. They focus on three structural areas. These are “OUTWARD FOCUS,” “RADICAL WELCOME READINESS,” and “CLOSING THE BACK DOOR.”

Let us begin to look at that next time.

Fr. Charles Zlock


Good Things are Happening at St. Raymond!

Fr Charles Zlock - 1 Year Anniversary

Time flies! We celebrate Fr Charles Zlock’s arrival at St Raymond one year ago. Thank you, Fr Zlock! May God continue to bless and guide you.


Advent Homily Series

Join us for our Advent Series: Who is Your Secret Santa? Follow along at mass each week to unwrap 10 gifts God has for you this season!


Advent by Candlelight

On December 2, Sr. Lynn Marie Ralph, SBS, reflected on inviting the Christ Child to enter our lives in a new and profound way, particularly by candlelight. The women of St. Raymond decorated the most beautiful tables. Please see the photos from an amazing evening. We hope to see you in 2024!


Called & Gifted - Charism Discernment

The Called & GiftedDiscernment Process is designed to help Christians discern the presence of charisms in their lives. Charisms, or spiritual gifts, are special abilities given to all Christians by the Holy Spirit to give them power both to represent Christ and to be a channel of God's goodness for people. Whether extraordinary or ordinary, all charisms ought to be exercised in the service of God (Catechism of the Catholic Church, 2003)

15 parishioners completed our first program this past summer. St Raymond is pleased to offer it again starting in January 2024. YOU are invited to join us for an information session on Saturday, 12/16, 8:45am (after 8am Mass), in the rectory basement/Sister Rosemary Room. Please call the office (215-549-3760) to let us know if you are able to join, or if there are any questions.

Be who you were created to be, and you will set the world on fire.

St Catherine of Siena


Life Groups

Advent Life Groups meditate on and discuss the 12/3 weekend Gospel reading this week. if you are unable to join us, please see the Member Guide that is attached below for review.

Advent Life Group Member Guide - Week 3
Download PDF • 119KB

Celebrating Our Youth with Generation Grace

Do you have a child in grades 6-8? Please contact Brandi to get them involved in our Middle School Youth Ministry. We would love to have all our Middle School Kids involved. Brandi can be contacted at or 215-549-3760.

Saturday, 12/9 - Christmas Light Show

We will visit the Spectacular Light Show at Franklin Square, Philadelphia.


Family Faith Formation Sessions

"Let the children come to me”

Attention Parents/Guardians: Family Faith Formation Sessions will run September 17, 2023 – June 2, 2024.

Parents with children entering grades K through 7th grade are encouraged to attend. Sessions are held immediately following the 10:00 Mass every other Sunday in the lower church. Enrollment forms are located on the desk in the rear of the church. Contact Arleen Daniels at 215-549-3760 or to receive a form via email. The greatest gift you can give your child is the gift of faith formation. If children do not experience how to live for God, the world will certainly show them how not to!


Extraordinary Ministers of Holy Communion Commissioning

This past weekend, a short Commissioning Ceremony was held for all those who volunteered to serve as an Extraordinary Minister to assist with Holy Communion and to bring Jesus, in the Blessed Sacrament to those who are homebound. Parishioners who are serving in this special way include: Araminta Brown, Jamette Davis, Peggy Evans, Talea Ferguson, Brenda Greene, Ellen Griffin, LeAnn Harris, Shelley Johnson, Marilyn Lamore, Deslyn Mancini, Ken Morris, Cheryn Pajil (Smyrl), Allison (Sunny) Ragan, Antoinette Reeves, Margie Ruzicka, Christine Supplee, and Michelle Young. May God send His blessing to all who serve in this manner.


Connect with Us Online

Be part of our awesome virtual community! Follow us on Instagram and Facebook to get the latest scoop, see fun pictures, and hear about our exciting events.

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Church Announcements

Feast of the Immaculate Conception

Friday, 12/8 is a Holy Day of Obligation for The Immaculate Conception of The Blessed Virgin Mary. Mass is 8 am.


Please join in praying the Rosary each weekend during the four weeks of Advent. Prayer begins 15 minutes before the start of Mass (4:45 pm, 7:45 am and 9:45 am). Please come in quietly during that time.

Upcoming Special Collections:

12/10/23 Christmas Flowers Offering

12/23/23 Christmas Offering

St. Raymond Bling (Merchandise)

Back by popular demand! St. Raymond merchandise is available for purchase in the church office during week day. We have some of your old favorites, such as hoodies and aprons. Plus, there is new merchandise including warm St. Raymond hats. Let's share the good news of St. Raymond in your attire.

Buy something for yourself. They also make great gifts!


It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas!

St Raymond Christmas Concert


A Soulful Christmas at the Kimmel Center

Soulful Christmas returns to the Kimmel Center Tuesday, December 12th at 7:30pm. Several members of the St. Raymond Choir will join the Philadelphia Catholic Gospel Mass Choir in singing in this year's concert.

TICKETS: Only a few tickets remain! Tickets cost $32 and are available in person at the Church office between 10 am and 1 pm, or by contacting Brandi at 215-549-3760. Phone reservations have a 24-hour grace period between your call and your payment (cash or check). In fairness to all, tickets will not be held beyond that 24-hour window.

TRANSPORTATION: St. Raymond will provide bus transportation to and from the Kimmel Center, departing from the Church lot at 6:30 pm. Our seating capacity is 48. When placing your order, please let us know if you would like a ride.


Giving Tree

The Giving Tree is on display in the rear of the church. Please take a card and purchase one or more of the items indicated. Your contributions will be used to stock the Blessing Shop at our Annual Home for Christmas Celebration. Men, women, and children from area shelters will be our guests and will be allowed to select from the items that are donated. Gifts will also be provided for children whose parents are incarcerated. If you are supplying a gift card for a teen, please DO NOT place it in the donation boxes in the rear of the church; instead, place it in the collection basket or in the collection boxes in the church. Please return your gift(s) UNWRAPPED to church or Rectory before December 22, 2023.

Thank You for your generosity!


Home For Christmas

We are calling all volunteers and willing workers to help turn St. Raymond into a Christmas wonderland for more than 200 kids and adults from local homeless shelters! The annual Home for Christmas Celebration will be Saturday, December 23, 2023, noon to 3:00 pm, but lots of help is needed beforehand, too! From decorating to food prep, hospitality, and cleanup, there's a task for everyone. Please sign up to help here or use the signup sheets in the back of the church this weekend.


USCCB 2023 Daily Advent Calendar


Community Events & Announcements

Career Opportunities:

Are you interested in pursuing a career in masonry or carpentry? The City’s Rebuild initiative in partnership with the Preservation Trades Center (PTC) is recruiting participants for our Winter 2024 Carpentry and Masonry Academies. These full-time, paid training programs ($15/hr) are 40 hours per week for six weeks. At the end of the 6-week program, participants will have the chance to interview for a full-time apprenticeship. No experience is required!

Visit the website for more information.


Constituent Service Sundays

Sunday, December 17th at 12 pm in the School Hall (after 10am Mass)

Staff from Councilman Isaiah Thomas’ office will be onsite to offer help and support with your issues, concerns and questions. Free legal advice will also be provided.


The Word Made Flesh: Artists of Color Shine Light on the Incarnation

Sponsored by: New Encounters - Catholics Facing Racism

Join us for an Advent Series of Visual Meditations and Reflections on Henry Ossawa Tanner, Our Lady of Guadalupe, and multi-cultural religious art.

Sessions take place on Tuesdays 12/12 and 12/19 at 7pm on Zoom. Sessions will last approximately an hour.

On December 12th, we will reflect on the image of Our Lady of Guadalupe. The reflection will be led by Aurora Camacho de Schmidt, who is a professor emerita of Spanish and Latin American Literature at Swarthmore College and an immigration activist with the New Sanctuary Movement.

On December 19th, we will have a reflection and open discussion on multi-cultural religious art, led by the question of “Who belongs in our Crèche?” New Encounters leadership will facilitate this final session.

Registration is FREE, thanks to ongoing financial support from The Catholic Foundation of Greater Philadelphia. Register here.


Missionary Discipleship in 2024

Learn more about this great opportunity and register here.


News From the Office of Black Catholics

Check out the December Newsletter for many exciting events.


This Week's "Go Forth" Suggestion from Archbishop


Archdiocese of Philadelphia Updates

Please sign up to find out what is happening around the Archdiocese of Philadelphia.

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