Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Fun Fest 2010 -- Day 4

Photos by Jane Winstead

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

15 promises for those who pray the rosary

The rosary is prayed every weekday morning at 8:30 a.m. at St. Raphael. The Rosary Group meets every Tuesday and Thursday at 9 p.m. Experience the real power and wonder of the prayer of the rosary in community followed by individual prayers, as requested, for spiritual, emotional, and physical healing.

The following are the 15 promises of Mary to Christians who recite the rosary, as
given to St. Dominic and Blessed Alan de la Roche.

1. Whoever shall faithfully serve me by the recitation of the rosary, shall receive signal graces.

2. I promise my special protection and the greatest graces to all those who shall recite the rosary.

3. The rosary will be a powerful armor against hell. It will destroy vice, decrease sin and defeat heresies.

4. It will cause virtue and good works to flourish; it will obtain for souls the abundant mercy of God; it will withdraw the hearts of men from the love of the world and its vanities, and will lift them to the desire of eternal things. Oh, that souls would sanctify themselves by this means.

5. Those who recommend themselves to me by the recitation of the Rosary shall not perish.

6. Whoever shall recite the rosary devoutly, applying himself to the consideration of its sacred mysteries shall never be conquered by misfortune. God will not chastise him in His justice, he shall not perish by an unprovided death; if he be just, he shall remain in the grace of God, and become worthy of eternal life.

7. Whoever shall have a true devotion for the rosary shall not die without the sacraments of the Church.

8. Those who are faithful to recite the rosary shall have during their life and at their death, the light of God and the plentitude of His graces; at the moment of death they shall participate in the merits of the saints in paradise.

9. I shall deliver from purgatory those who have been devoted to the rosary.

The faithful children of the rosary shall merit a high degree of glory in heaven.

11. You shall obtain all you ask of me by the recitation of the rosary.

12. All those who propagate the holy rosary shall be aided by me in their necessities.

13. I have obtained from my Divine Son that all the advocates of the rosary shall have for intercessors the entire celestial court during their life and at the hour of death.

14. All who recite the rosary are my sons, and brothers of my only son, Jesus Christ.

15. Devotion to my rosary is a great sign of predestination.

Monday, October 25, 2010

What priests and deacons wear

In the last few weeks some have asked why the deacon is dressed like the priest.

The vestments are different; the priest wears a chasuble and the deacons wear a dalmatic during the celebration of the Eucharist. Although they look similar, they are different.

This article explains it a bit more.

Fun Fest 2010 -- Day 3

Photos by Jane Winstead

Friday, October 22, 2010

Fun Fest 2010 -- Day 1

Photos by T. Allan Smith
Fun Fest continues on Friday and Saturday noon to 11 p.m. and on Sunday noon to 9 p.m. More great food, live music, bingo, carnival rides and games. And, oh yes, a rummage sale full of hidden treasures waiting to be discovered. It's fun for the whole family and it helps support St. Raphael Catholic School.

Photos by Jane Winstead

Thursday, October 21, 2010

On the midway at Fun Fest

Photo by T. Allan Smith
Pretty sure Michael Jordan didn't start this way. Still, those prizes look pretty tempting, don't they? One In Wins, the signs say. But those big guys at the top are probably pretty safe, don't you think? Unless you're a top free throw shooter, you might want to consider a different game. More photos coming later. Check back.

Ready for Fun Fest to open

Photo by T. Allan Smith
Students were lined up in front of the ticket booth to get their arm bands at the opening of Fun Fest 2010. The festival opens at noon on Friday, Saturday and Sunday.

To honor the workers

This slide show is dedicated to the many parishioners who gave their time and talent to make Fun Fest possible. Only a few of those who toiled are pictured here but they represent the entire group who worked so hard to assure that Fun Fest would be a success. Workers, we salute you.

Fun Fest food favorites

Video by T. Allan Smith

This video contains updated interviews.

Yum yum! Your favorite Fun Fest food?

Video by T. Allan Smith

Setting up for Fun Fest

Photo by T. Allan Smith
Ashley Fox prepares the Ring Toss booth for tonight's activities. Festgoers will try to loop their rings over soda bottles to win prizes. It takes a lot of work to prepare for Fun Fest. This series of photos will highlight the workers who make Fun Fest happen. The festivities begin this afternoon at 4 p.m. Fun Fest runs through Sunday. Click on the photo to enlarge

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Last day to get discount tickets

Today is the last day to get discount ticket packages for the St. Raphael Fun Fest, which opens tomorrow. Take a look at yesterday's post for ticket package options. Remember, this is one of the biggest fundraisers for St. Raphael Catholic School. Have fun and help a worthy cause.

Monday, October 18, 2010

Fun Fest tickets – buy now and save!

Photo by Jane Winstead (2009)
There are only a few more days to wait before the 2010 St. Raphael Fun Fest opens on Thursday. There are fewer days, though, to still get discount tickets, so don't miss out. Fun Fest runs through Sunday, October 24. It's all on St. Raphael's beautiful waterfront campus.

Remember how much fun it was last year? There are real carnival rides, delicious food, games, live music, bingo and a rummage sale.

You can still volunteer to work a the event, of course. Hands are always needed. But most of all, come and enjoy the fun with fellow parishioners, and help St. Raphael Catholic School.

Wednesday is the last day to buy discount tickets. Click on the ticket form at the left to see a clear, full-sized copy of it. That'll help you decide which package is right for you.

This is one of the major fundraisers for the school. With your help last year, we raised nearly $25,000. You, your family and friends can help make this year even better.

We look forward to seeing you at the 2010 St. Raphael Fun Fest.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Inside the CCW card party

Video by Louise Barrett
Ever wondered what happens at a Council of Catholic Women card party? Videographer Louise Barrett takes you inside the card party that was held on Saturday, October 16, at the Parish Center. Take a look to see what all the excitement is about. Proceeds from the card party and other CCW events are used to support the parish in various ways. Music: Bob Marley & The Wailers – Three Little Birds.

Below, see a slide show from the CCW card party.

Photos by Jane Winstead

Thursday, October 14, 2010

40 Days Mass and reception

Photos by Jane Winstead
Father Dominic celebrated Mass at Our Lady's Chapel at the Cathedral of Saint Jude the Apostle on 5th Avenue on Tuesday, October 12. The Mass was for parishioners who participated in the prayer vigil at the abortion clinic on Central Avenue on Tuesday. Catholics from all over the Diocese of St. Petersburg are participating in the 40 Days for Life campaign to end abortion.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Prayers during 40 Days campaign

Photos by Jane Winstead
St. Raphael parishioners gathered at the abortion clinic on Central Avenue Tuesday, October 12, to pray during the 40 Days for Life campaign in the Diocese of St. Petersburg.

Read Maggie Moren's account of the prayer vigil that St. Raphael parishioners participated in on Saturday, October 2.

Hip hip hooray!!! It’s almost here!!!

Our carnival starts Thursday, October 21, and runs through Sunday, October 24, right on our beautiful waterfront campus.

Anyone who attended last year knows it was a great time, and this year’s will be bigger and even better!

We will have lots of carnival rides, delicious food, games, live music, bingo, and a rummage sale – something for all ages!

We have lots of ways for the entire church family to help make this a great weekend. You can volunteer at the event, you or your business can be a sponsor, you can place a yard sign in front of your home or business.

This is your last chance to buy your discounted ride tickets and arm bands prior to the event. You can also sell them to your friends and neighbors! Tickets will be on sale after all masses.

This is one of St. Raphael School’s major fundraisers. With your help, last year we nearly raised $25,000. This year we hope everyone here will take part in supporting this great weekend event as we exceed last year’s dollar amount!

We look forward to seeing you at the 2010 Fun Fest!

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

St. Raphael students in the Times

Students from St. Raphael Catholic School are featured in the St. Petersburg Times today in a photograph by Jane Winstead accompanying an article about rituals and superstitions of Tampa Bay Rays fans.

The article was published in advance of tonight's playoff Game 5 against the Texas Rangers. Some of the students are wearing Rays jerseys.

The article can be seen online and in print on the back page of the special playoff section.

Jane said she received a call from Times reporter Danny Valentine asking permission to use the photograph after he had seen it on the Saint Raphael Messenger.

Jane took the photograph of second graders at St. Raphael who were participating in the Eucharistic Adoration on Wednesday, October 6.

The students are shown in the old church kneeling before the monstrance on the altar.

Monday, October 11, 2010

Student Reader ministry

A recent article in The New York Times listed two things that Americans fear the worst: Death and public speaking. Getting up in front of large groups or even small groups can be a daunting task for many.

However, it can be one of the most fulfilling experiences as well.

Proclaiming the Word of God during the Mass is a church ministry that most would not even think to become involved with.

Our children who attend the school here at St. Raphael learn very quickly how to participate and overcome this fear while serving God’s Church. As first graders, they begin their experience of reading in front of the congregation during weekly Liturgy.

In addition, our middle school children have an opportunity to expand their participation in this church ministry by reading at the Sunday masses. The purpose is to have the children grow up understanding the importance of proclaiming God’s word and how best to proclaim it, serving the Church as part of their spiritual journey and learn some basics of public speaking while they are at it.

It is also very special when a parent and their child proclaim God’s word at the same Mass.

Ashley Fox, one of our adult Sunday readers, recently read with her daughter Lauren.

On October 10, both mom and daughter were our readers for the Sunday 9:30 a.m. Mass. Lauren is a 7th grader at St. Raphael and has this to say about participating in this ministry:

"I've enjoyed the experience of reading at Mass. I really do believe it helps us as young people to overcome fear of being in front of a large group."

A chance to study the word of God

By Ashley Fox

I started reading at Mass shortly after I participated in the Christ Renews His Parish formation program. I wanted to get involved with a ministry that would allow me to participate more fully in the Mass. In doing so, I had hoped that I would gain better understanding and appreciation for the celebration of the Mass.

In the ten years I have been a reader, I feel like I have learned more about my faith than in all the years before. Not only do I understand the actual celebration of the Mass better, but I’ve had a chance to study the word of God, as I prepare for each reading I’ve done. The workbook that we use to prepare for reading gives some excellent background information and explanation about the specific scripture so that we really understand what we are proclaiming.

Some people have said to me “Oh, I could never do that. I am too nervous speaking in public.” I think we all have some nervousness at one time or another, but I also believe this is a perfect time to pray to God asking for His help in calming your nerves. It is so nice to have that feeling of answered prayers each time you finish reading. Every time you do it, you get less and less nervous. What a gift to see God shaping and transforming you to be used as a tool in His ministry.

I’ll never forget my very first time reading. I was so nervous! As was the custom back then, I was assigned to just do the first reading. There was a senior reader assigned to do the second reading, which meant his responsibilities also included the announcements, and the prayer intentions .

I had studied and practiced the first reading and I knew when I was supposed to go up to the ambo. I got there 20 minutes before Mass began to sign in and review everything a few more times.

I knew the name of the person assigned as the second reader, but I was not familiar with him and I was anxiously waiting for him to arrive so that I could double check on the details of my assignment .

Every time someone walked in, I asked if they were “so and so” and each time they said “no”, I began to panic.

With every passing minute I panicked more and more as I realized I didn’t know the order of the announcements, nor would I be sure of when I was to approach the ambo if I had to do the second reading and especially wasn’t sure of when and how to do the prayer intentions.

Nobody was showing up and there was only five minutes before mass was going to begin! I ran out into the church and found an usher and asked him to help me find an experienced reader who knew what to do.

Fortunately his wife was a seasoned veteran and she jumped in to help me, much to my relief.

From that point on, I prepared for each Mass as if I would be the only reader – just in case I was.
I’ve enjoyed reading over the years and I’m happy that my daughter has had the opportunity to join this ministry. I know that she is gaining valuable experience in public speaking, while actively participating in the Mass and growing spiritually.

If you're interested: Please contact Marybeth Finster at for more information about participating in this ministry.

Photos by Jane Winstead

40 Days: Help and answered prayers

Photo by Jane Winstead
Deacon Jim joins parishioners for a prayer during the vigil on Tuesday, October 12.

By Maggie Moren

St. Raphael's prayer warriors came to the abortion clinic on Saturday, October 2, in hourly shifts to pray starting at 7 a.m. and ending at 5 p.m.

The clinic at 4131 Central Avenue performs abortions on Saturday mornings.

As St. Raphael members prayed, God heard their prayers and there was one save, which means that an abortion-minded woman changed her mind and is keeping her baby.

One couple who regrettably did have an abortion found that their car had a dead battery as they were leaving the clinic. The man went inside to get jumper cables but the clinic did not help them, so the woman reluctantly approached the St. Raphael group and asked them for jumper cables.

No one in the group had cables in their car. But Mary Lou Price, one of the prayer warriors, called her son Scott on the phone. Scott came down and helped the couple. The man was so grateful and thankful. He tried to pay Scott who refused, telling the man that he came down because he knew they needed help.

This group lived out their Christian faith and the couple experienced love from those praying outside of the clinic, people who wanted to help by demonstrating their concern and love, not condemnation.

Hopefully, the couple will seek further help from Project Rachael, realizing that people are out there wanting to help them.

Jamie and Ted Scarpino from Life Teens, along with several youths and their parents came down at noon to pray and sing songs of praise to Jesus during their hour.

The group apparently impressed and lifted the hearts of parishioners from other parishes. After they left the site, some participants called one of the leaders of 40 Days for Life to tell about their experience.

In turn, I received a call lauding the efforts of the St. Raphael group. I was told this group of young people and their parents were wonderful witnesses.

There were more than 18 people present during that hour. We had more than 40 parishioners from St. Raphael who came down to pray that day. Awesome.

Many thanks to those who came down to pray and those who could not come down but prayed with us from church or their homes.

If you're interested: St. Raphael's next day to pray in front of the abortion clinic is October 12, from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. Since it is a Tuesday, there are fewer who have signed up than for Saturday. Please consider coming down for an hour to pray with us. God bless.

Fun Fest tickets, anyone?

Photo by Jane Winstead
Tickets for the St. Raphael Fun Fest were on sale Sunday, October 10, as ticket committee members stood ready to assist parishioners. There also were opportunities to sign up to help with the event, which is the year's largest fundraiser for St. Raphael Catholic School. Help is needed with nearly all aspects of the festival, including food preparation and sales, game booth duty and more. The Fun Fest runs from Thursday, October 21 through Sunday, October 24. Authentic carnival rides and games from Modern Midways will be featured. | Click photo to enlarge.

Students at Adoration

Photo by Jane Winstead
Second graders at St. Raphael Catholic School participate in the Eucharistic Adoration on Wednesday, October 6, in the old church. The Real Presence of Jesus Christ in the monstrance on the altar gives faithful Catholics the opportunity to consider the sacrifice Jesus made for us and to spend prayerful time in His presence. The practice of Eucharistic Adoration has continued since the Middle Ages. | Click photo to enlarge.

Monday, October 4, 2010

Blessing of the Animals

Photos by Jane Winstead
Deacon Jim conducted the Blessing of the Animals Monday, October 4, to mark the feast of St. Francis of Assisi.

Parishioners gathered behind the Parish Center with their dogs and cats and other pets for the occasion. At least one snake was observed in the gathering.

St. Francis is the patron saint of animals and the environment. The ceremony is conducted in remembrance of St. Francis' love for all creatures.

St. Francis also was the founder of the Franciscan Order, whose members follow the saint's rules of a simple life dedicated to service of the Lord.

Want a photo?: If you would like to download any of the photographs from the slide show, please click on the slide show. You will be taken to the Picasa Photo Album Web site. Choose the photo you want to download and click the DOWNLOAD button at the top of the page. The photo will be saved to your desktop.

Faith the size of a mustard seed

Photo by Jane Winstead
Jesus said if you have faith the size of a mustard seed you can move mountains, Father Tim told parishioners Sunday. The gospel was from Luke 17:5-10. The apostles asked the Lord to increase their faith so that they would have the strength to follow God's Word. He had told his disciples that although sin would occur to be sure they were not the cause of someone sinning. He also told them to rebuke the sins of their brothers but to forgive if they repent, and to continue to forgive as long as they continue to repent. The apostles did not believe they had the strength to obey. "Increase our faith," they said.

Luke 17

6 The Lord replied, "If you have faith the size of a mustard seed, you would say to (this) mulberry tree, 'Be uprooted and planted in the sea,' and it would obey you."

7 "Who among you would say to your servant who has just come in from plowing or tending sheep in the field, 'Come here immediately and take your place at table'?

8 Would he not rather say to him, 'Prepare something for me to eat. Put on your apron and wait on me while I eat and drink. You may eat and drink when I am finished'?

9 Is he grateful to that servant because he did what was commanded?

10 So should it be with you. When you have done all you have been commanded, say, 'We are unprofitable servants; we have done what we were obliged to do.'"

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Pop! go the scouts

Photo by Jane Winstead
Scouts from St. Raphael's own Troop 219 and Pack 219 are raising money for troop and pack activities with offers of tasty Trail's End popcorn snacks. The scouts were on hand after Masses on Sunday, October 3. Parishioners could choose from several flavors, including cheddar cheese corn, white cheddar cheese corn, Unbelievable Butter and butter light.

Three new featured pages

We've added three new permanent pages to the Saint Raphael Messenger.

Catholic Video offers a selection of video from around the world featuring Catholic speakers who offer support and encouragement to Catholics living their faith.

Who is St. Raphael? was inspired by the recent celebration of the feast of St. Raphael during the Children's Mass. Father Tim told the story of St. Raphael, St. Michael and St. Gabriel.

Lighthouse Catholic Media offers detailed information about the weekly featured speaker available at the kiosk in the narthex as well as videos by other Catholic speakers whose CDs are available through the Lighthouse ministry.

Links to these new pages also can be found under Pages in the column on the right.

Friday, October 1, 2010

Parish Council begins work

Photo by Jane Winstead
Seated, from left, Ken Dandar, Father Tim Sherwood, Lynn Edmonds, Lloyd Abentroth. Standing, from left, T. Allan Smith, Pat McGuire, Celeste Brown, Marty Foreman, Ursula Abner, Michael McBride, Deacon Jim Grevenites and Valerie Wostbrock. Council members Shelly Shukys, Jon Campbell, Therese Johnson and Peggy Hawkins were not present.

The Parish Council has started a process to develop a mission statement and vision for the parish as well as a revision of the bylaws.

At the suggestion of Father Tim, the group will reflect on the broad mission of the parish, its direction and its future, and will make recommendations at its next meeting at the end of October.

All suggestions are welcome. You may send an e-mail to council president Ken Dandar or contact any council member.