Monday, November 29, 2010
Sunday, November 28, 2010
There is still time to register for a special all-day session in January with Dr. Scott Hahn, a former Presbyterian minister who converted to Catholicism in 1986. If you are unsure whether you'd like to attend, listen to this compelling talk by Dr. Hahn on Catholic teaching. It is only audio. The image is the Sacred Heart of Jesus. There are links below for the other parts if they don't come up at the end of each video.
Dr. Hahn is a popular speaker who has given more than 800 talks across the country and overseas. He is one of the featured speakers for Lighthouse Catholic Media. His books and CDs are available in the narthex at church.
Here is an article with the details about Dr. Hahn's visit to Light of Christ Catholic Church in Clearwater on January 29.
Part 2 | Part 3 | Part 4 | Part 5 | Part 6
Thursday, November 25, 2010
It is a time for preparation, penitence and anticipation. The Advent wreath is a sign of the anticipation of the birth of Jesus. Traditionally, one candle is lighted this week, two next week and so on.
In addition, this is a season for anticipation of the Second Coming of Jesus Christ. As we prepare for the Christmas celebration we are mindful of the wait for Christ's return.
Although Sr. Judy Zienlinski, OSF, of the Sisters of St. Francis in Sylvania, OH, may be experiencing temperatures cooler than we find in St. Petersburg, her reflections on the First Sunday of Advent may still be helpful to us.
This video is provided by the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops.
Liturgy notes: Advent: We hope, we prepare
The First Sunday of Advent
Jesus said to his disciples:
“As it was in the days of Noah,
so it will be at the coming of the Son of Man.
In those days before the flood,
they were eating and drinking,
marrying and giving in marriage,
up to the day that Noah entered the ark.
They did not know until the flood came and carried them all away.
So will it be also at the coming of the Son of Man.
Two men will be out in the field;
one will be taken, and one will be left.
Two women will be grinding at the mill;
one will be taken, and one will be left.
Therefore, stay awake!
For you do not know on which day your Lord will come.
Be sure of this: if the master of the house
had known the hour of night when the thief was coming,
he would have stayed awake
and not let his house be broken into.
So too, you also must be prepared,
for at an hour you do not expect, the Son of Man will come.”
• Read the first and second readings and the Responsorial Psalm
– United States Conference of Catholic Bishops
Wednesday, November 24, 2010
• Maggie Moren, St. Jude Medal recipient
• The work of Maggie Moren
• The Saint Jude Medal
Saturday, November 20, 2010
On Sunday, November 21, parishioner Maggie Moren will receive the St. Jude the Apostle Medal for distinguished and outstanding service in St. Raphael parish and the Diocese of St. Petersburg.
In August, when Maggie Moren received the letter from Bishop Lynch about the St. Jude the Apostle Medal, she read it, put it down on the dresser and left the room.
She was flabbergasted.
Why me? she wondered. What did I do? “It was a surreal, ‘take your breath away’ moment,” she says. “Wow!”
She went back and read the letter again. Still in awe, she told her husband, Rod.
Little of that initial shock has worn off. Three months later, she still questions why she should be singled out for her work in the parish.
“I’m just a little spoke in a big wheel,” she says. “Why me?”
Parishioners who know Maggie know exactly why. Maggie Moren is one of the busiest members of St. Raphael Parish, with numerous ministries that keep her moving in service to God almost full time since she retired in 2000.
Maggie is head sacristan, serves on the Liturgy Committee, is a reader and altar server at weekday and weekend Mass, is an extraordinary minister of holy communion, an organizer for 40 Days for Life and an active member of CCW, has served on the RCIA team and much more.
• The work of Maggie Moren
It is a volunteering habit honed during her years with Target stores as a manager in the human resources department. Target’s good neighbor policy allowed her to be involved in her communities in a big way, doing everything from planting flowers at schools to helping Habitat for Humanity build houses.
“It was an awesome part of my job,” she says.
But if her workplace volunteerism helped prepare her for her contributions today in St. Raphael parish, it was her professional experience with a solid work ethic that prepared her to handle the myriad activities in which she finds herself involved. She reflects on a question about her work background and what she does now.
It is the melding, she says, of the business ethic and the Christian ethic, admitting that she hadn’t really thought of it that way before. “I am using the blessing that God has given me.”
As a self-described Type A personality, Maggie Moren is given to spotting a task that needs to be done and just doing it – whether it’s planning and organizing CCW events or cleaning up and washing dishes afterward – or preparing the altar for Mass as the head sacristan.
It is the sacristan duty, though, that holds special appeal.
“I love being a sacristan,” she says, “You’re preparing for the Lord and you don’t want to make any mistakes.”
Then she relates how unsure she was when Monsignor Cavalry approached her about taking over the duties. It was one Sunday after Mass. She had remained in the pew praying. She felt a tap on her shoulder. It was Monsignor.
What did I do? she thought, wondering if, perhaps, there was a problem.
“He said that he would like me to be a sacristan. You can’t argue with Monsignor when he has his mind made up.” She wasn’t at all sure she would know what to do or do it well. Nevertheless, guided by the Holy Spirit, she took up the challenge.
“It was another ‘take your breath away’ moment.”
Her formative years in post-World War II Kansas City, MO, first at Christ the King Elementary School and later at Bishop Hogan High School undoubtedly shaped her strong faith. Schooled by nuns from the order Sisters of Charity, BVM, Maggie became devoted to Jesus Christ in elementary school and rarely wavered, though her energetic personality might have given the nuns some pause.
“I was a little brat,” she says, but adds that in those days of strict discipline you didn’t misbehave because the stern nuns in their traditional black and white habits didn’t put up with it. One time in college, though, she skipped biology class and stayed home. A nun called home to report the absence to her mother, who didn’t happen to be home at the time. Maggie answered. Oops!
Her return to school the next day was full of mea culpas.
One time the strong-willed Irish lass decided to stop going to Mass. That lasted for about three months, she says, then the pull of the Lord was too great and she returned to regular Mass. As a girl, she went with friends to other churches sometimes but never considered going to another denomination.
“We have the body, blood, soul and divinity of Jesus Christ. Why would I want to go anywhere else?”
Not only does she revel in her faith, but she wants to share it with others. When she was on the RCIA team, the joy bubbled over.
“The treasures that the Church has – you want to share with others and you want them to love the Lord, and you hope you are helping them to do that.”
Still, there are perils for the devoted parishioner doing God’s will every day. It is possible, Maggie says, to become so busy that it cuts into your prayer time.
“You can be in the hands of Jesus but you have to talk to Him every day and be with Him every day.”
It’s why she attends daily Mass: “I need all the help I can get.”
The Saint Jude Medal was established in 1999 by our Bishop Lynch to recognize the contributions of laity throughout our diocese. The individuals (who are recommended by their Pastor) have given “exemplary service and shown extraordinary dedication to their parish”.
Congratulations to CCW member Maggie Moren, who will be awarded the 2010 St Jude Medal for St. Raphael Parish on the Feast of Christ the King, Nov. 21. Maggie has served St. Raphael since 1995.
Maggie’s working background is in Human Resources both at John Knox in Missouri, and Target in both Missouri and Florida (She helped open 10 stores in Florida.) She also worked for four years as a parish administrator at St. Patrick Church in Tampa when her husband was transferred to this area.
Maggie began working almost full time as a volunteer at St. Raphael after she retired in 2000, later volunteering to help at Catholic Charities and Pregnancy Plus Medical. She and her husband Rod have four grown children and three grandchildren.
At St. Raphael, Maggie worked many years as an RCIA team member. Maggie now serves as head sacristan and is on the liturgy committee.
She has been a CCW member since 2002, and has held several offices in the group. Maggie has cooked, shopped, set up, organized and cleaned up for numerous CCW events. Maggie has been a part of St Raphael Bible studies.
Maggie is also an Extraordinary Minister of Holy Communion, altar server and reader at weekday and weekend Masses. Maggie is part of the Adoration ministry, Communion to the homebound, and the Rosary ministry. Maggie has taken Holy Communion to those at Shore Acres Nursing home and helped with the monthly Mass there for many years.
She has been the Respect Life co‐chair, believing firmly in the dignity of life from the womb to the tomb. She has organized the Baby Bottle fundraiser at St Raphael and at other parishes and helped organize baby showers for Pregnancy Plus Medical and Mary's Outreach.
Maggie was a major organizer of our Parish/Diocesan 40 Days for Life Program, connecting with other Catholic Parishes and Protestant Churches.
In addition, Maggie volunteered at Catholic Charities after Hurricane Katrina helping those who came to the St. Pete area as refugees. Maggie was so effective that she was hired as a temporary staff member for the relocation project.
Maggie has been on the board of Pregnancy Plus Medical for the last three years. She is now able pursue one of her dreams by returning to her love of art. Maggie uses oils and pastels. Some of her beautiful works have been donated to the charities she supports.
We are honored to have Maggie recognized for her faith-filled love and service to St Raphael and the Diocese of St. Petersburg.
Past St Jude’s Medal Recipients include Bernadine Quartetti (09), Don and Ruth Mattick (08), Vivian Frank (07), Lu Perrin (06), Ofelia Hoeppner (05), Terry Hamm (04), Bernadette Bailey (03), Celeste Brown (02), Truus Stuimer (01), Ginny Hansen (00), Jeanette Bolich (99).
Established in 1999 by Most Reverend Robert N. Lynch, Fourth Bishop of St. Petersburg, the St. Jude the Apostle Medal is awarded to a lay member of a parish for distinguished and outstanding service.
Cast on the medal are the Diocesan Coat of Arms (first image) and the image of St. Jude the Apostle, Patron of this Diocese (second image).
During evening prayer, on the Feast of Christ the King Sunday, November 21, at 3 p.m., at the Cathedral of St. Jude the Apostle, Bishop Lynch will recognize 102 recipients from 78 Parishes and Missions and one Diocesan recipient.
Through their generosity and loyal service to their parish and communities, these lay men and women have contributed greatly to spreading the Gospel of Jesus Christ.
• The work of Maggie Moren
• Maggie Moren receives medal (slide show)
Thursday, November 18, 2010
At that time, Mussolini was the dictator in Italy and respect for Christ was diminishing, a problem that remains with us today. For many, personal wants and needs take precedence over God. Christ’s authority is rejected in favor of individualism.
Pope Benedict XVI has said that Christ’s kingship is based on loving and serving others, not on “human power.” He noted in 2006 that “the cross is the ‘throne’ from which He demonstrated the sublime regality of God-love.”
"After all the enemies – and in the last instance, death – have been defeated," the Pope said, Christ’s kingdom will be fully realized on earth. Until then, Christians should “freely accept the truth of God’s love,” he said.
The Virgin Mary’s humble and unconditional acceptance of God’s will in her life was the reason that “God exalted her over all other creatures, and Christ crowned her Queen of heaven and earth,” Benedict said.
The logic of Christ is not based on “criteria of efficiency and of human power,” he said, but on love and service to others.
The Solemnity of Christ the King is celebrated on the last Sunday of the liturgical year. It is followed by the First Sunday of Advent, the beginning of the new liturgical year. A solemnity is a principal holy day.
• Parishioner Julie Musselman offers a personal perspective in A Catholic Home Journal
The Solemnity of Christ the King
The rulers sneered at Jesus and said,
"He saved others, let him save himself
if he is the chosen one, the Christ of God."
Even the soldiers jeered at him.
As they approached to offer him wine they called out,
"If you are King of the Jews, save yourself."
Above him there was an inscription that read,
"This is the King of the Jews."
Now one of the criminals hanging there reviled Jesus, saying,
"Are you not the Christ?
Save yourself and us."
The other, however, rebuking him, said in reply,
"Have you no fear of God,
for you are subject to the same condemnation?
And indeed, we have been condemned justly,
for the sentence we received corresponds to our crimes,
but this man has done nothing criminal."
Then he said,
"Jesus, remember me when you come into your kingdom."
He replied to him,
"Amen, I say to you,
today you will be with me in Paradise."
• Read the first and second readings and the Responsorial Psalm
– United States Conference of Catholic Bishops
Wednesday, November 17, 2010
St. Raphael's Nursing Home Visitation Ministry is highlighted on the Diocese of St. Petersburg's Web site under a Ministries of Mercy banner.
Parishioner Louise Barrett, who coordinates the ministry, is quoted as saying, "We visit the residents to bring the Lord to them and because some have no family and our visit may be the only one they receive." She mentions that she and eight other parishioners visit the nursing home each week. She has been visiting for 11 years.
The article describes in detail the activities of the ministry during a recent visit to the Shore Acres Nursing Home. Linda Champion and Joan Priest also are mentioned in the article. Linda is quoted as saying she was scared at first but now can't give up the ministry.
Several other ministries at various parishes in the diocese are featured as well, including St. Joseph, St. Gabriel, Prince of Peace, Lorenzo Terrace II, All Saints and St. Jerome.
Bishop Lynch started the Ministries of Mercy initiative in 2006 to support and foster parish ministries that serve the poor, suffering and marginalized.
If you're interested in the nursing home ministry: Call Louise Barrett at (727) 821-2561 or send her an e-mail at AMBLAB.@aol.com
Tuesday, November 16, 2010
Playing today’s best Christian music, Spirit FM lifts the soul by providing inspiration, education, and entertainment for the whole family. From Hip Hop and Rock, to CHR and Sacred Classics, there’s something for everyone at Spirit FM.
Friday, November 12, 2010
Dr. Hahn is a popular speaker who has given more than 800 talks across the country and overseas. He appears regularly on EWTN. He is the author of many books on theological subjects, including Rome Sweet Home, which chronicles the process of conversion of him and his wife, Kimberly.
Hahn boasted as a young minister of having converted some Catholics to what he called a purer Christianity. However, he and his wife began to have doubts when they became convinced that contraception was against God's law.
The more he studied the differences between Catholicism and Protestant denominations, the more he became convinced that Catholicism was the true church. Hahn credits the Catholic organization Opus Dei with influencing his conversion.
The Spend a Day with Dr. Scott Hahn runs 10 a.m to 3 p.m. January 29 at Light of Christ Catholic Church in Clearwater. An optional Mass begins at 8:30 a.m. followed by registration and refreshments. Tickets are $20 each and include a box lunch.
You may register in advance at www.locchurch.org or at the Light of Christ rectory. Call (727) 386-9248 for more information.
Dr. Hahn's topics for the day will be The Lamb's Supper, Letter & Spirit and Why Scripture Matters.
Dr. Hahn is one of the featured speakers for Lighthouse Catholic Media. His books and CDs are available in the narthex at church.
Thursday, November 11, 2010
Thirty-third Sunday in Ordinary Time
Gospel: Luke 21:5-19
While some people were speaking about
how the temple was adorned with costly stones and votive offerings,
Jesus said, "All that you see here--
the days will come when there will not be left
a stone upon another stone that will not be thrown down."
Then they asked him,
"Teacher, when will this happen?
And what sign will there be when all these things are about to happen?"
"See that you not be deceived,
for many will come in my name, saying,
'I am he,’ and 'The time has come.’
Do not follow them!
When you hear of wars and insurrections,
do not be terrified; for such things must happen first,
but it will not immediately be the end."
Then he said to them,
"Nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom.
There will be powerful earthquakes, famines, and plagues
from place to place;
and awesome sights and mighty signs will come from the sky.
"Before all this happens, however,
they will seize and persecute you,
they will hand you over to the synagogues and to prisons,
and they will have you led before kings and governors
because of my name.
It will lead to your giving testimony.
Remember, you are not to prepare your defense beforehand,
for I myself shall give you a wisdom in speaking
that all your adversaries will be powerless to resist or refute.
You will even be handed over by parents, brothers, relatives, and friends,
and they will put some of you to death.
You will be hated by all because of my name,
but not a hair on your head will be destroyed.
By your perseverance you will secure your lives."
– United States Conference of Catholic Bishops
Wednesday, November 10, 2010
Parishioner Don Mattick saw an opportunity. Don’t discard those pews, he said. He had plans for them. He saw possibilities for that fine old walnut wood.
Don and parishioner Tony d’Abramo have created beautiful handmade memorial crucifixes from the old wood. The second batch of them is now being prepared and is available at the parish gift shop.
Each piece is hand sanded and individually custom fitted. The handcrafted items are not varnished or stained. The natural wood is hand rubbed with linseed oil to bring out the grain and natural color. Each cross is branded with the initials of the church burned into the wood at the base.
There are three sizes, 8-inch, 10-inch and 12-inch, and metal and resin corpora from which to choose. They can be made to hang on a wall or be freestanding with a small block pedestal. Prices range from $20 to $32.
Although the material has been cut and prepared the crucifixes have not all been constructed yet. They will be completed when orders are placed for them.
Don (far left) and Tony started working together a couple of years ago after Tony retired. Their first project was to build choir robe cabinets in the hallway between Meeting Room A and the church. Since then they’ve tackled other projects around the parish. Over time, Don has been instrumental in acquiring woodworking equipment he and Tony now use. Not long ago Don bought nearly a whole workshop of equipment from the Missionaries of Africa retirement home on Seventh Avenue near the Cathedral of St. Jude the Apostle.
In addition to the crucifixes, there are several small tables in the church constructed from wood of the old pews.
Crucifixes are not only for sale at the gift shop but some have been created for a special purpose. Ten crucifixes are hung throughout the parish campus, including the priests’ rooms, the sacristan and altar servers rooms, and meeting rooms A and B.
This is actually the third batch of handmade crucifixes for St. Raphael. The first was created from scrap wood from building the beams in the new church in late 2005. There were 59 crucifixes in that edition. Then, in 2007, there were 98 in the first batch using wood from the old pews. This third edition will include 44 crucifixes.
Not all the pews will be used for the crucifix project. Some were sold to parishioners and others who wanted a unique furniture piece for their home. There are pews still available. Longer ones are $300. Shorter ones are $200.
Don and Tony extend an invitation to anyone who wants to help with the various parish building projects. Recently the two have been putting windows into doors in the church office to make it easy to see if the priests have visitors without disturbing them.
Don suggests that young parishioners who have a desire to do woodworking but don’t have the experience and skills needed would be particularly welcome. He’s happy to pass on his knowledge. Don recalls being taught woodworking by a master carpenter so showed him how to do a task then made him do it.
“I’d love to pass some of that on,” Don says.
Photos by Jane Winstead
Tuesday, November 9, 2010
Kelly (left), the Australian-born motivational speaker who wrote Rediscovering Catholicism, visited our parish in January as part of a three-day mission in the Tampa Bay area.
Kelly challenges Catholics to wake up the sleeping giant that is the Catholic Church. He urges us to become a billboard for the faith by becoming "the best version of ourselves."
It is similar to the message he brings to secular audiences in his role as corporate motivational speaker tending to such clients as Chick-fil-A, FedEx, McDonalds, 3M, and Pepsi.
But Kelly was raised Catholic, and it is to those roots he returns when he embarks on missions like the one that brought him to St. Raphael. Recordings of Kelly's Catholic missions are distributed by Lighthouse Catholic Media. This new CD can be ordered here. The parish gets a donation back on any CD club subscriptions.
Parishioner Julie Musselman has made Lighthouse CDs and books available in the narthex at the church. Stop by the Lighthouse display for CDs and books from other dynamic Catholic speakers.
Sunday, November 7, 2010
Photo: Julie's husband Bob prepared a "big breakfast" for the family reminiscent of breakfasts Bob's dad used to prepare.
Thursday, November 4, 2010
Wednesday, November 3, 2010
Parishioner Greg Creamer has completed the altar for the statue of St. Joseph now installed on the south side of the church near the tabernacle.
The statue of St. Joseph and the baby Jesus now stands atop a three-foot mound of lava rock, cedar stone, river rock and slate in a fittingly masculine setting.
The two-day project began with a trip to the stone yard Friday afternoon to select materials. Greg knew what to look for because he would be matching the look of the altar for the statue of the Blessed Mother on the opposite side of the church.
Though he was using the same materials, Greg selected larger pieces to achieve the masculine look he wanted. It took two trips to the stone yard to get what he needed. He used about 1,200 pounds of material for the project.
A plywood base supports the whole structure and the statue is bolted to the stand. It’s a creative process to place the rocks just right to achieve the desired look but for Greg, who owns Artistic Flowers and supplies arrangements for the St. Raphael altar, that is a welcome challenge.
Each stone, with its unique shape and character, adds to the overall effect. Greg placed stones and removed them with an eye for the details and an understanding of what each piece added to the composition. He assembled the project in about two hours Saturday afternoon.
Greg built the altar for the Blessed Mother five years ago at the request of Monsignor Caverly. When Father Tim and Deacon Jim asked him to create an altar for St. Joseph using similar materials he was happy to oblige.
“It’s a blessing to be able to do this project for our parish,” he said. “Many people work many hours to make our church what it is and I am glad to do whatever I can to help.”
The shrine was made possible by the St. Raphael chapter of the Council of Catholic Women through a $3,000 bequest from CCW member Lily Manfredo Riconda. St. Joseph has special meaning for Lily, whose late husband, Leo Joseph Riconda, was born on March 19, the feast of St. Joseph.
• Click on photo of St. Joseph above to enlarge | Photos by Jane Winstead
Tuesday, November 2, 2010
Monday, November 1, 2010
• Parishioner Julie Musselman wrote about the Thursday Mass on her blog A Catholic Home Journal. Also, hear recordings of the Litany of the Saints.
• Read about the meaning of All Saints Day
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.