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Good News for November 29th


There are four aspects to churches, which either take their congregation to the next level, or begin a turnaround cycle to success. The first is internal: it is mental/emotional. The other three are structural.


First is an attitude adjustment. The attitude adjustment starts with people who are fully invested in the church changing and moving to a different level. These people know that God has placed a mission field right in front of them. They are excited about it. They want to be a part of it. Yet they know that changes and growth are neither sudden nor dramatic. Catherine of Siena Institute founder Sherry Weddell, estimates that it takes a church 15 years to move from maintenance mode to mission.


They know that church health is more than size and attendance numbers. It is about having a church that people would miss and fight for if the church closed tomorrow.


They are honest about the fact that their church will still have critics. It will face people who doubt. What changes in the attitudes is how invested disciples respond to these challenges.

They stop making excuses. They stop blaming others. They stop comparing their church to others and celebrate what God is doing in their church. They are continuous learners; they attend conferences, they read books, they are part of a learning community.


Finally, they work on what might be the hardest of attitude changes. They deal with critics and criticism in a healthy way. How do they do that? Let us look at that next time.


Fr. Charles Zlock

 

Good Things are Happening at St. Raymond!

Advent Life Groups meditate on and discuss the 11/25 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 #2
.pdf
Download PDF • 153KB

 

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

Saturday, 12/9 - Christmas Light Show

We will visit the Spectacular Light Show at Franklin Square, Philadelphia. Please contact Brandi at 215-549-3760 if you are interested.

 

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 arleen@saintraymond.net 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 weekend at all the Masses, we will have a short Commissioning Ceremony 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.

 

Church Announcements


Sacrament of Reconciliation

Confessions (Sacrament of Reconciliation) will NOT be heard at 6:00 pm Monday, December 4th. Instead, confessions will be offered at 6:30 am Tuesday, December 5th.


Rosary

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.


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.


Upcoming Special Collections:

12/10/23 Christmas Flowers Offering

12/23/23 Christmas Offering


St. Raymond Bling (Merchandise)

Back by popular demand! St. Raymond Bling (Merchandise) is available for purchase in the church office during week days, or after Mass. 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: A block of tickets has been ordered for ease of purchase. Tickets cost $32 and are available on a first-come, first-served basis. To allow us to spread the joy, there is a two-ticket maximum. Tickets 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.

 

Advent by Candlelight on December 2nd

Instead of decorating trees, use your imagination to decorate a beautiful and seasonal table! Join us for "Advent by Candlelight"this Saturday, December 2, from 6-8 pm at St. Raymond. This event for women will offer an elegant, relaxing, and memorable evening of friendship, while centering our thoughts on inviting the Christ Child to enter our lives in a new and profound way, particularly by candlelight.


We are asking women to decorate and host a table. As guests enter, they are greeted with the ambiance of soft Christmas music and the glow of candlelight. There will be time to socialize, eat, and admire the decorated tables. Sr. Lynn Marie Ralph, SBS, our guest speaker, will share how “There is a Blessing Coming Your Way."


Table Hosts do not have to be a member of St. Raymond’s Parish. A love for God and the desire to reflect on the true meaning of this most holy season is the only requirement. Fliers will be in the back of the church.


Contact Brandi, Arleen or Minta at 215-549-3760 for additional information or to sign up. Let us share the light of Christ with all!

 

USCCB 2023 Daily Advent Calendar

 

Upcoming Community Events

Constituent Service Sundays


Sunday, December 17th at 12pm 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.

 

Diaconate Information Session


 

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


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 the first three Tuesdays in December: December 5, 12 and 19th at 7pm on Zoom. Sessions will last approximately an hour.

On December 5th, we will reflect on Henry Ossawa Tanner’s paintings. Tanner was the first African-American painter to receive international acclaim. The reflection will be led by Dejay B. Duckett, who is the Director of Curatorial Services at the African-American Museum of Philadelphia.

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 November 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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