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Good News for May 8, 2024



Curtis Martin is the founder and CEO of the Fellowship of Catholic University Students (FOCUS). This is an evangelization ministry primarily focused on sharing faith with students at colleges and universities. He was the keynote speaker at the recent 2024 Priest’s Convocation.


As a point of departure, Martin looked at the Gospel of John, Chapter 1:35-39: “The next day John was there again with two of his disciples, and as he watched Jesus walk by, he said, ‘Behold, the Lamb of God.’ The two disciples heard what he said and followed Jesus. Jesus turned and saw them following him and said to them, ‘What are you looking for?’ They said to him, ‘Rabbi’ (which translated means Teacher), ‘where are you staying?’ He said to them, ‘Come, and you will see.’ So, they went and saw where he was staying, and they stayed with him that day. It was about four in the afternoon.”


Why would the writer of the Gospel of John care that it was 4 pm? Why was this particular time so important? Because, at that moment, everything about the lives of those two disciples changed…. forever. That was the start of the fire. That is when their existing faith was ignited.


Martin talked about how the success of parishes is typically measured. A diocese looks at the number of Baptisms. The number of people in the pews. And the amount of money collected. Martin said that these are important, but they do not measure the faith of the person. They are “lagging indicators” of faith.

 

“Leading indications” are things like: How often does a person pray daily? How often does a person go to Confession? How often does a person spend time in front of the Blessed Sacrament? Participation in these leading indicators automatically leads to an increase in numbers of the lagging indicators. A person who prays daily, goes to Confession monthly, spends at least an hour in front of the Eucharistic Lord on a regular basis AUTOMATICALLY goes to church more often, gives more to the parish and has their children participate in the sacraments. The reason is that the faith of these people has been ignited.


So, how do you ignite the faith of the people in the pews? How do you start the spark of the flame of the people who are not in the pews? This was Curtis Martin’s challenge to the priests at the Convocation. A first step is to have conversations about these questions with people who are seen and active in the parish - and people who are not.

 

Fr. Charles Zlock


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Good Things are Happening at St. Raymond!


"Let the little children come unto me."



Congratulations to the children of our parish! Kelvin Santiago Serrano, Anna Gabriela Baskin, Jackeline Gomez Aponte, Aubrey Pauline McMillan, Jazmin Gomez Aponte, Eva Noelle Brown, Gray Kevin Pierre, Joxiel Gomez Aponte, Jaxson Christopher Patton, Valdah Leezza Metellus, and Krystal Lynn McMillan


The smiles on their faces tell it all -- what a joyous, spirit-filled moment it was for parents and parishioners to witness these eleven radiant children at the 10 am Mass on Sunday when they received the Body of Christ at their First Holy Communion.

 

Celebrating Fr. Charles Zlock's 30th Anniversary



Last Saturday, we gathered to celebrate an incredible milestone: 30 years of faithful service by Fr. Zlock in the priesthood. We're so grateful for his dedication to answering God’s call and for his service to our community. We are blessed to have Father Zlock in our lives, and we look forward to continuing this journey of faith under his spiritual guidance.


In Case you Missed it...Deacon Bill's Roast and Toast


 

Happy Mother's Day!

All the mothers who are worshipping at St. Raymond are wished a day of happiness and peace. May the image of our Blessed Mother continue to remain central in their lives as they care for the welfare of their children.


 

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 brandi@saintraymond.net or 215-549-3760.


Sunday, June 9- Caring for Friends Food Preparation (date change)

Friday, July 5-Gospel Skate Night at Rolling Thunder

 

Church Announcements


The Ascension of Jesus

Join us for Mass to celebrate the Ascension of Jesus on Thursday at 8 am.


Pentecost is Coming

The "Birthday of the Church" soon will be upon us. Let's show our true colors by wearing red on May 19, to mark the coming of the Holy Spirit among us. May 19 is also, fittingly, Hospitality Sunday at St. Raymond. Join us for light refreshments and fellowship after the 10am mass. Please note this will not be a full lunch since we are dedicating our time and resources to celebrating Fr. Zlock’s ordination party last week.


Men's Group

St Raymond Men’s Group will be meeting Tuesday, May 14, at 7 pm in the Rectory Dining

Room


Silence Cell Phones

Please remember how distracting cell-phone noises can be during Mass. We prayerfully ask you to silence your phone when you enter church, so that no one is disturbed during this holy hour.


Lost and Found

Have you lost any personal items during Church service and never retrieved them? Please check the bin in the back of Church labeled “Lost & Found”. People turn in items often to the Rectory. All items turned in are put into the bin.


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 brandi@saintraymond.net.


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.


Trauma Kit Now in Sacristy

Did you know that trauma cases are one of the leading causes of fatalities for people over 40? To increase the possibility of addressing medical issues requiring trauma first aid, a "Stop the Bleed" trauma (or tourniquet) kit is now in the sacristy. It is located next to the Automatic Electronic Defibrillator (AED), to the left of the sink.


The trauma kit includes:

  • Tourniquet with windlass rod

  • Heavy gloves

  • Compression dressing

  • Packing gauze

  • Marker

Using the kit is not difficult but does require a bit of familiarity with the items in the kit. A five-minute instructional video can be found here. It's worth taking the time to watch, just in case.


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.


Sunday, May 5, 2024

Budgetary Goal: $13,500.00

Collection & Envelopes: $6,155.08

Electronic Giving: $6,399.00

Monthly Church Maintenance: $217.02

Catholic Missions: $20.00

Easter Offering: $25.00

REST: $525.00

Total: $13,341.10


To our Online Parishioners

We, at St. Raymond, are extremely pleased that you continue to be part of our community via livestream. Although you may be unable to attend Mass in person, please remember that we need your financial support in order to remain a vibrant parish. You may give online anytime at this link.


Feel free to contact the rectory for assistance at 215-549-3760.

 

ATTENTION: ST. RAYMOND NEEDS YOU!

Matthew 9:37-38:  Then he said to his disciples, “The harvest is abundant but the laborers are few; so ask the master of the harvest to send out laborers for his harvest.”

Numerous needs have been communicated here and in the bulletin. Unfortunately, responses are nearly non-existent. A vibrant parish has members responding to the call for help. YOU CAN MAKE A DIFFERENCE! Please scroll below for several opportunities. You can sign up here or complete a signup sheet on the table in the back of church (on the Williams Ave side). We want to hear from you! THE HARVEST AWAITS!


Altar Servers

Attention, parents and young people of St. Raymond! We are in need of new altar servers. Training will be provided. Father Zlock and Deacon Bill will also mentor all applicants. They will pray daily for them, observe how they do at Mass, encourage them and offer advice when needed. Please contact Brandi at 215-549-3760.


Bethany Team

The Bethany Team's primary function is to serve as greeters to welcome all who attend weekend Mass (5PM, 8AM and 10AM). The team also guides people in the procession to receive the Eucharist. Requirements are a warm smile and hospitality. A monthly schedule will be provided. Please contact Minta at mintabrown@saintraymond.net or by phone at 610-329-7256 if you would like to join the team.


Technology

We are in dire need of support from those with basic technology skills:

  • Slide Operators – manage slides shown on TV screens during 5pm, 8am or 10am Mass

  • Camera Operator – manage live streaming of 10am Mass via YouTube

  • YouTube Host – Engage with parishioners during 10am Mass

Requirements are a love for your parish, and a willingness to learn and serve. Teenagers and adults can contact Brandi at 215-549-3760.


To volunteer for any of the above tasks, please complete this form and someone will be in touch soon!


 

Job Search Assistance Needed

St. Raymond needs to fill two positions over the coming months. The positions are: (1) Social Service Outreach, and (2) 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 czlock@saintraymond.net.  

 

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.


 

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

Father Joseph Ita-Sam's New Book is Available


Father Joseph Ita-Sam will be at St. Raymond's this Sunday, and he will be bringing copies of his new book, Confronting Situations: A Guide to Living a Fulfilled Life. Inspired by the gospel words "I have overcome the world" (John 16:33), the book offers motivational insights, real-life stories, and empowering scriptures. Each chapter combines inspiration with practical therapeutic approaches, including short prayers for solace. Copies may be purchased after Mass for $20 each.

 

News From the Office of Black Catholics



Check out the Newsletter for many additional exciting events.

 

Archdiocese of Philadelphia Updates


The May newsletter is available here.

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


 






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