Everything we have is a gift from God. We seek to find ways to use these gifts to give back to the Lord.

The Parish of St. Raphael provides a number of activities and teams that allow us to use our gifts to return them with joyous thanks.  These activities fall into several categories:

Liturgical Ministries which provide parishioners who support the celebration of the Eucharist

  • Adoration of the Eucharist – Adoration of Jesus exposed in the Blessed Sacrament each Thursday from 3-7 PM.
  • Altar Linens – provide clean linens to be used at the celebration of the Mass
  • Altar Servers –assist the priest during the celebration of the Eucharist, representing the congregation
  • Bethany Ministry – reaching out and supporting our fellow parishioners who have experienced the loss of a loved one through death
  • Children’s Liturgy of the Word – a simplified presentation of the readings for each week of the Liturgical year, that allows children to understand and celebrate the Word of God
  • Extraordinary Ministers of Holy Communion (EMHC) – assist in the distribution of the Eucharist at Mass & to the homebound.
  • First Saturday Devotion – First Saturday of each month at 10:30 AM, to celebrate Mass, pray the rosary and adore Jesus exposed in the Blessed Sacrament
  • Greeters – provide parishioners with a warm welcoming atmosphere as they enter the church
  • Lectors – proclaiming God’s word during all liturgical celebrations
  • Liturgical Environment – providing a joyful environment in which to celebrate the Eucharist during each of the season of the liturgical year
  • Music Ministry – providing music and song to celebrate God’s joyful news
  • Ushers – greet, help parishioners with special needs, take up collections, distribute the bulletins

Community Services Ministries which provide prayer, support and care to our fellow parishioners, both internal and external

  • Emergency Food and Nutrition Network (for Catholic Charities) – on-going and special event collections of food supplies for the EFNN
  • Finders-Seekers – Matching those in need of jobs with those who have them
  • Knights of Columbus – joining with the Local K of C to support their outreach eventsLoaves and Fishes – food and caring for parishioners in need
  • Prayer Shawl – knitted and crocheted garments created with prayers for the recipient
  • St. John’s Soup Kitchen – delivering food and care at the soup kitchen in Newark
  • Sunshine Committee – greeting cards and notes to parishioners for whom we are praying

Parish Life Ministries which address the day-to-day needs of the parish and encourages interactions among parishioners

  • Collection Counters – teams of parishioners who count the offerings each week
  • Family Life – offering events for parish familiesFundraiser – defining events that will provide needed funds to the parish
  • Gardening – care and upkeep of the external gardens
  • St. Joseph Maintenance – DIY home repair and improvement projects
  • Senior Citizens – offering events for parishioners 60+
  • Vouchers – sale of vouchers for local supermarkets, 5% of sales going to the parish

Faith Formation and Preparation for the Sacraments which train our children and adults in the truths of our Faith and prepare them for the reception of specific Sacraments, as well as activities that strengthen the knowledge and beliefs we hold as Catholics

  • Antioch – An annual weekend trip for all high school youth to deepen their understanding of self and, thus, a deeper understanding of God
  • Preparation for Baptism – preparation for the sacrament of Baptism, required for all first-time parents. Both the preparation and the receiving of the Sacrament are by appointment.
  • First Reconciliation – preparation of our children to receive the sacrament of Reconciliation through training and support of their families.  Occurs in October of each year
  • First Eucharist – preparation of our children to receive the Eucharist for the first time. A joint preparation with the Religious Education staff and the families.  Occurs in March/April each year.
  • Confirmation – A year-long program of preparation for the sacrament of Confirmation through peer mentoring, retreats, and service projects
  • Religious Education – for young children (grades K-7) in which we create an atmosphere that is interactive, faith based and modeled after the love of Jesus.
  • Rite of Christian Initiation for Adults (RCIA) –a one-year process, led by a core team, which is open to individuals being called to the Catholic faith or adults who want to celebrate First Eucharist or Confirmation.
  • Siena Circle – a discussion group that uses current publications to lead to a lead a more spiritual and faith-filled life
  • Small Faith Sharing Communities – small teams who join together to explore our Faith and deepen our knowledge of the facts of our Faith
  • Young Adult Ministry – Young adults ages 21-32, who support one another to continue their Faith Journey and discuss the issues facing them in the new environments
  • Youth Ministry – provide a safe, confidential environment for all high school youth to meet in a social setting and discuss current events, using our Faith as the basis for discussions

Parish Councils which provide overarching guidance and organization for the Parish

  • Parish Leadership – oversight and leadership of parish community, setting goals and communicating with parish members
  • Finance – advise and assist the Pastor in matters pertaining to the financial administration of the parish
  • Stewardship – helping the parish family to recognize their God-given gifts and use them
  • Operations – supporting the physical needs of the church property and its upkeep

Please use the pull-down menu for details on these ministries.