24 Jan 2013

Message from Father De Celles:

The U.S. Catholic bishops have announced a “Call to Prayer for Life, Marriage and Religious Liberty.” As part of this call, I am inviting all St. Raymond parishioners to join me in taking part in the United States Bishops’ “Call to Prayer for Life, Marriage and Religious Liberty.” This initiative involves 5 parts:

1) Monthly Eucharistic Holy Hour: Every Last Wednesday of the Month we will have a Holy Hour from 6pm to 7pm, and offer special prayers for life, marriage and religious liberty. This will take place during the last hour of the currently regularly scheduled Wednesday Exposition and Adoration. The first “Holy Hour for Life, Marriage and Religious Liberty” will take place this coming Wednesday, January 30, at 6pm.

2) Daily Rosary: All parishioners are asked to pray the Daily Rosary, either individually or as a family, for life, marriage and religious liberty.

3) Intentions at Mass: We will continue to include petitions for the protection of life, marriage and religious liberty in every Sunday’s Prayer of the Faithful, and I ask that those who attend weekday Mass keep these intentions in your prayers at those Masses.

4) Meatless Fridays: As I have often reminded you, the Lord taught his apostles that some terrible evils are conquered only through acts of penance: “This kind cannot be driven out by anything but prayer and fasting” (Mark 9:29). With that in mind, and following the Bishops’ current initiative, I encourage all parishioners to abstain from meat of any kind (other than fish) on all Fridays of the year. (Of course, Catholics are required to do some form of penance every Friday of the year. Traditionally, the penance normally offered on Fridays is abstinence from meat, although most Catholics either replace it with another form of penance [which is permitted] or neglect to offer any penance at all [not permitted]. During Lent abstinence from meat is absolutely required on every Friday for all Catholics over 13 years of age. Note, however, except in Lent, failure to do Friday penance does not constitute a mortal sin).

5) This summer we will observe a Second Fortnight for Freedom in the 2 weeks before the Fourth of July, much as we did last summer.

These are just a few small things we can do to help keep up the good fight for life, marriage and religious liberty in our parish and our country. I add to this list my own continuing invitation to parishioners to join me in abstaining from meat and praying the Rosary (at least) every Wednesday as well. And while all these small efforts will be effective in their own way, they also serve as reminders that we must constantly look for new ways to promote and encourage others in the truth, always charitably, respectfully and peacefully.

18 Dec 2012 – Hurricane Sandy Relief

This is a note from one of Fr. DeCelles family members who lives in New Jersey. At Thanksgiving Father had asked her to notify him if she heard of any Catholic parishes in particular need due to Sandy. She made Father aware of the below mentioned need.

Little Ferry, NJ was hard hit, with many homes destroyed by flood when a berm in the town burst. St. Margaret Church in Little Ferry was also damaged, and the church and rectory are still closed. Apparently, the church was where many people in this lower income area went for help such as food pantry, etc.

Our parish (in NJ) is working with St. Margaret’s sister parish to provide gift cards so Little Falls families can purchase items for Christmas. Cards for Sears, Target, Toys R Us, Kohls, Lowes / Home Depot, Best Buy are probably the most useful. Restaurant or grocery store gift cards are also welcome since many homes there do not have working kitchens yet.Your parishioners could send gift cards to our parish. Our youth group will be coordinating and making sure these get to the right place.

Seeing as the youth of their parish are working to organize efforts for Hurricane relief we thought it would be nice for our youth to assist them in this endeavour. For starters this week for Youth Group on Thursday night we will be making Christmas Cards of encouragement that can be passed out to the families with the gift cards. So High School YOUTH GROUP (this week only) will be from 5:00pm-6:30pm in the Library (Thursday Night) and we will have pizza for dinner. I would also like to encourage you (youth esp) to think about giving to these families in need (including youth your age) who are without basis necessities this Christmas.This is rather late notice but should you like to contribute a gift card to help those in need you can drop it off to the parish office marked for hurricane relief through this Friday, or you can bring them with you this Thursday.

I pray you are all enjoying a Blessed Advent!! You are all in my prayers! Let me know if you have any questions.

Yours in Christ,
Ms. Kristin

Kristin Smith
St. Raymond’s Director of the Youth Apostolate
703-440-0535 ex. 21

11 Dec 2012 (UPDATED)

The House of Mercy has a shortfall of approximately 200 toys (which can include religious items such as CDs, books, rosaries, etc.) due to not receiving their usual number of donations this year.

Boxes for the donated toys will be placed inside the lobby near the library on the entrance level of St. Raymonds. Toys will be collected at 4:00 pm on Thursday and delivered to The House of Mercy, where they will be wrapped and given to the children.

The House of Mercy
8170 Flannery Court
Manassas, VA
(703) 659-1636