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Good News for March 13, 2024

Updated: Mar 14

Comfort the Sorrowful

Who has not experienced some type of sorrow in their life? Answer: nobody. The sorrowful are all around us. You don’t have to look far. You hear about someone going through a rough time from family, friends, or other parishioners. Write down their name. Ask for their contact information. Call them or visit them. 


When you do, please, don’t ask, “How are you?” You know the answer. They’re doing lousy. Ask them, “How can I support you now?” or “How can I minister to you at this time?” They might not be able to give you an answer at that moment. Yet the question has a depth to it. It offers a sense of attention and intention. It contains an aspect of comfort. 


In the book of Job, his friends hardly speak after hearing about Job’s plight. First, they sit with him for seven days. This is the ministry of presence. It is “compassion” from the Latin words “cum” and “passio” (to “suffer with“ someone). They are not offering advice or counsel or help. They are journeying and accompanying that person through the dark valley. 

Next week we look at the fifth Spiritual Act of Mercy which is to “Bear Wrongs Patiently.”

Fr. Charles Zlock

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Lent at St. Raymond

The Elect Experience the Second Scrutiny

This past Sunday the Elect, formerly Catechumens, experienced the second Scrutiny of three. Originating around 500 AD, these Scrutinies showcase God's transformative work in the Elect, focusing on repentance and conversion. The Elect at St. Raymond are in their final stages of purification in preparation for Baptism at the Easter Vigil.

We are encouraged to pray especially for the Elect during this Scrutiny. The Church reminds them that choosing faith involves challenges, including misunderstanding and rejection, similar to carrying a cross. This prayer hopes for them to gain insight like the man born blind did, understanding the divine purpose in the world and resisting darkness, doubt, and disbelief.



One of the best ways to celebrate Lent is receiving the Lord’s mercy through the Sacrament of Reconciliation. As an appointed “Minister of Mercy” by Pope Francis, Fr. Zlock offers several opportunities for Confession to accommodate busy, working schedules:

  • Monday evening from 6:00 - 7:00 pm

  • Tuesday morning from 6:30 - 7:30 am

  • Saturdays from 4:00 - 4:45 pm (Please NO Confessions after 4:45. Fr. Zlock is will be preparing for the liturgy)

  • By appointment. Call 215-549-3760 to schedule a convenient time. 

Take advantage of this opportunity to experience grace and forgiveness at no charge!

Holy Week Schedule

  • Holy Thursday, 3/28: Mass of the Lord’s Supper at 7 pm

  •  Good Friday, 3/29:  Service of the Lord’s Passion at 3 pm

  •  Good Friday, 3/29: Stations of the Cross at 7 pm

  • Saturday, 3/30 at 10 am = Decorating the Church for Easter (No 8 am Morning Mass)

  • Easter Vigil, 3/30: 7 pm (No 5 pm Service)

  • Easter Sunday, 3/31: 8 am and 10 am with Easter Egg Hunt for kids 12 & under after 10 am Mass

Request for Candies and Easter Eggs

Our annual Easter Egg Hunt will be held on Easter, March 31st after 10 am Mass. We are asking for candy donations (no peanuts) and plastic eggs. Please drop off in the box in the back of the church or the church rectory during the week from 9:30 am-4:30 pm. Your kindness is greatly appreciated!!


Good Things are Happening at St. Raymond!

Join us for "Bible, Boots, and Backpacks" — a series of four unique hikes led by Father Charles Zlock. On these journeys, we'll explore nature while reflecting on Pope Francis' message in Laudato Si’, an invitation to care for our planet and each other. It's a chance to walk, reflect, and connect with both creation and our Creator. Everyone is welcome, so grab a friend and come along for inspiration, community, and a breath of fresh air. Let's walk, reflect, and grow together!

Get detailed information about each hike here. Call Fr Zlock if you have further questions at 215-549-3760, ext 1.


Celebrating Our Youth with Generation Grace

Do you have a child in grades 6th-8th? Please contact Brandi to get them involved in our Middle School Youth Ministry. Below is the schedule that was created for the children. We would love to have all our Middle School Kids involved. Brandi can be contacted at or 215-549-3760.

Saturday, April 20 and Sunday, April 21 - Youth Ministry Bake Sale After all Masses

Sunday, May 26 - Caring for Friends Food Preparation


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!


Life Groups


Lenten Life Groups are open to parishioners, family, and friends (pretty much anyone). If you have never joined a Saint Raymond Life/Small Group, now is the time! 90 minutes + once a week + 4 weeks = a new relationship with Jesus and others.

Our Week Three Member Guide is attached as a resource for all. Enjoy!

Week Three - Member Guide
Download PDF • 348KB


Jazz Concert Benefitting St. Raymond School

Join us Saturday, April 20 from 7-11pm for Smooth Jazz / R&B featuring Shirley Lites & Company. Enjoy complimentary wine, cheese, and crackers while supplies last. Feel free to bring your own beverages.

Purchase your tickets in advance for $25 by calling the rectory at 215-549-3760. Tickets will be $30 at the door.

Sponsored by the Men of St. Raymond, all proceeds from the concert will benefit St. Raymond School.


Church Announcements

Join us in celebrating Father Zlock's 30th Anniversary on May 4th from 6 pm to 9 pm in the St. Raymond School Hall. Come and enjoy an evening filled with food, drinks, music, and wonderful fellowship as we honor Father Zlock's three decades of dedication to the priesthood.

RSVP by April 7th at this link.

Don't miss out on this joyous celebration!

It will take many hands (and brains) to successfully celebrate Father's Anniversary. Please join us this Sunday (3/17), after the 10am Mass in the Rectory Basement (Sister Rosemary Room) for the kick-off planning meeting for this blessed event.


Weight Watchers

Weight Watchers are back, and they meet here at St. Raymond every Thursday from 4 pm to 6 pm. If you are interested or know someone who is, please contact Brandi in the Church Rectory at 215-549-3760 or email her at

Church Safety Equipment

Recently, the Parish purchased two items that are important to church safety. A fully- equipped first aid kit, as well as an automated external defibrillator (also known as an AED device), are located in the sacristy. Both are on a table to the left of the sacristy sink. This ensures that St. Raymond has sufficient means to address significant medical emergencies during liturgical events.

Snow and Inclement Weather

In the event of severe snow, the 8 am Weekly Daily Mass Schedule will be based on the Catholic School Schedule. If the school is closed or delayed, there will be no 8 am Daily Mass that day, thus giving time to get the lot cleared for the next Mass. Please check your local news channel for school closings.

Tax Time

As you prepare your taxes, Brandi in our Parish Office is happy to provide a statement for your 2023 Giving. Please call her at 215-549-3760 or email her at

Special Collections

March 3 - Rice Bowl

March 10 - Easter Flower Offering

March 29 - Holy Land Sanctuaries

March 31 - Easter Offering

March 31 - Maintenance and Repairs

Financial Facts

We thank those parishioners who, recognizing God’s gifts to them, make their response in our weekly collection. Your continued support is vital, necessary, and deeply appreciated.

Collection for Sunday, March 10, 202

Budgetary Goal: $13,500.00

Collection & Envelopes: $4,405.00

Electronic Giving: $5,177.00

Monthly Church Maintenance: $440.00

REST: $50.00

Rice Bowl: $200.00

Easter Offering: $45.00

Easter Flowers: $437.00

Holy Land: $35.00

Total: $10,789.00



... about the homilies you hear. Really! Honestly! The new Catholic Preaching Institute (CPI) at Saint Charles Seminary invites you to participate in what could be the largest-ever study of its kind in the nation. It only takes 10 minutes to do!

Then invite each of your family members to do the same, and share this with all your Catholic friends! With everyone’s input, CPI will design programs to make preaching in the archdiocese more compelling ... so that your experience of the Word of God becomes even more inspiring.

Don't wait! The survey closes March 22. Simply click here to complete the online survey or scan the QR code below.


Prayer Team Help Needed

Are you comfortable having a conversation with God? St Raymond’s Prayer Team is seeking volunteers to pray for and with others. The monthly Prayer Team Partners gather on the first weekend of the month after each Mass to hear and respond to prayer needs. The primary requirements are a love of Christ and love of your neighbor. We will help you with the rest. To learn more or volunteer, please email Deacon Bill or call him at 215-549-3760.


Wanted: Servers and Sacristans!

Attention, young people of St. Raymond’s! We are in need of new altar servers – and we also wonder whether any students or young parishioners would be interested in being hired as sacristans.


Fr. Zlock and Deacon Bill will work with a few adults at St. Raymond to mentor all applicants. They will pray daily for them, observe how they do at Mass, encourage them and offer advice when needed.


Jesus said to His disciples, “The harvest is plentiful, but the workers are few.” If you aspire to be one of God’s workers, please contact Brandi at 215-549-3760 or


Job Search Assistance Needed

St. Raymond needs to fill 2 - 3 positions over the coming months. The positions are in (1) Social Service Outreach, (2) Sacramental Preparation/Religious Education of our youth, and (3) Director of Parish Finance and Accounting.


Fr. Zlock is looking for someone to lead this task. This would include working with Parish Staff to make adjustments to existing job descriptions, posting the jobs on various media and job channels, initial evaluations of any resumes received, initial interviews and helping manage the process for final interviews and hiring. 

The work is important to fill positions that are critical to running the parish. If interested, please contact Fr. Zlock at 215-549-3761 (Ext 1) or  


Calling all Young Adults!

Sign up for Fr. Zlock’s Young Adult WhatsApp community for prayers, videos, reflections and events for the young adult community. Click here to join the group.


Anointing of the Sick

On the weekend of April 13th & 14th 2024, the Sacrament of Anointing of the Sick will be administered at the Saturday 5 pm and Sunday, 8 am and10 am Masses. Parishioners who have been diagnosed with a chronic illness (cancer, diabetes, arthritis, lupus, diseases of the heart, lung,  kidney, etc.), undergoing treatment for another disease/illness or living at a very advanced age are encouraged to receive this Sacrament.

If you qualify and desire to be anointed, sign-up sheets are available on the desk in the rear of the church, or you must call the rectory no later than  April 10. No names will be accepted after this date. Should you have any questions please call Arleen Daniels at 215-549-3760.


REST Celebrates Women's History Month

We are thankful for the amazing women we now call family from Sierra Leone, Afghanistan and Congo as well as the volunteers with REST walking along side them.


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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Community Events & Announcements


Presenting the National Black Catholic Congress April Webinars


Calling All Parents of Teens!

Mark your calendars for April 13 to watch a half-day conference offering practical help to parents of teens. Engage24 is a uniquely-tailored event offering practical help, experience and wisdom to parents from one of today's leading voices on the subject of parenting teens. Mark Gregston, author and host of Parenting Today's Teens podcast and radio broadcast will share offer thoughts about the joy and challenges of raising teens in today's fast-paced culture. The event is free, and promises to be fun and informative.


Kimmel Center Offers Free Summer Arts Program for High Schoolers

Rising 9th through 12th grade students with intermediate to advanced-level performing arts experience are invited to audition for a free 3-week camp program at the Kimmel Center in Philadelphia, focused on Singing, Acting and Dancing.

The program runs weekdays from July 8 to July 26, 9:30 am to 5 pm. Students are expected to attend all days of the program and will participate in skill-building classes, masterclasses, audition preparation, rehearsal and a culminating performance in a Musical Theater production.

Registration deadline is April 1, and acceptance to the program will be audition-based. Register here.


College Scholarship Opportunities

High school seniors and juniors – check out this website.

Right now, we know that college costs are really high, and FAFSA is having problems. But we also know that attending college is life-changing. So see if Quest Bridge can take you where God wants you to go! If you have good grades and are involved in extra-curricular activities at school or in your community, this is a resource you don’t want to miss.


Lunch and Learn


News From the Office of Black Catholics

Check out the March 2024 Newsletter for many additional exciting events.


Archdiocese of Philadelphia Updates

The March newsletter is available here.

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


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