Praise Be to You – Pastor Message

Pope Francis Laudato Si tI’ll admit that I’ve only just begun to peruse the 200 or so pages of Laudato Si, Pope Francis’ new encyclical “On Care for our Common Home.” But the very first lines, from which the title is taken, are something we can consider as we head out on various summer vacations and trips. “Laudato si,” or “praise be to You,” is taken from St. Francis of Assisi’s hymn praising God for the wonder of his creation.

This gives us the starting point to approach all else the Holy Father has to say about care for creation, and how environmental issues affect especially the poorest in our world. It’s a starting point of wonder and gratitude for the beauty and gift of the created world, a fundamentally Christian perspective that crosses divisions of politics, ideology and time.

I think of Fr. Karol Wojtlya, St. John Paul II as a young priest, taking groups of young adults kayaking on the forest rivers of southern Poland, to be closer to nature and closer to God. Or of J.R.R. Tolkien in mid-20th century England, troubled by the cutting down of lovely and ancient British forests – so much so that in his Lord of the Rings trilogy there are trees that fight back! (Those would be the Ents, as geeks like me know.)

As you and loved ones breathe the salt air on white NC beaches, or camp by cool mountain streams in the western hills of our state, or simply stroll in the shade of one of the parks right here in Raleigh, say: “LAUDATO SI…!,” Praise be to you, Lord, for the beauty of your creation!  And then let’s consider the rest of what Pope Francis has to say.  Click here for the document.

God bless, Fr. Phil Hurley, S.J. Pastor

Office Closing July 3

flagOur offices and meeting rooms will be closed on Friday, July 3rd in observance of the Independence Day holiday.

Peace be with you.

Register Now for Vacation Bible Camp

www.hdnicewallpapers.comTurn hot Summer days into cool faith-filled fun at Vacation Bible Camp!  Camp will be held from July 13 through July 17.  Click here to register! (Login with your email and click Available Registrations)

VBC welcomes children aged 4 through 10 as campers, and ages 11 and up as volunteers.  Adult volunteers are also needed.  Come one, come all!

Would Your Preschooler Like Science?

ECC bubble tEarlier this month, the Preschool held a special class for four year olds in the community so we could share a very important part of our program, SCIENCE!  Ms. Molly led 10 children and their parents in a 45 minute class titled, “Bubbles in the air! Bubbles everywhere!” During this class,……

We Need 75 Volunteers for Habitat for Humanity July 18

2015 Habitat tJoin us this year as we work towards our goal of building affordable homes for people in need. This is an awesome way to personally give back to the community and help others. We will be constructing homes on July 18 (framing), August 15 (framing), September 19 (siding), October15 (painting & framing), and November 21 (siding). Register at   (Volunteer with Us>Construction>Crosstowne). The address is 740 Grove Creek Lane Raleigh, NC 27606. For more information or help with registering, contact Matt Sabula at

Confirmation Community Building

Confirmation tParish youth who are preparing to celebrate Confirmation in October, gathered recently for an evening of community-building games.  In addition to getting to know each other better, the games provided an opportunity to explore concepts of communication, trust, and leadership development. There will be additional chances for Confirmandi to enjoy this event throughout the Summer.  Click through these pictures to get a taste of the fun!

In the Name of Jesus – We Made It!

Pledges for the 2015 Bishop’s Annual Appeal have reached $282,681. We heard from 1300+ families for a parish participation rate over 38%. That’s nearly 101% of our $280,322 parish goal. Thank you to all who supported the 2015 BAA. Your outstanding generosity will go a long way to helping 30 ministries serving people and parishes across the Diocese of Raleigh. Overall, the BAA stands at 6.9 million dollars, which is 96% of goal.

You can still make a pledge! You can pick up an envelope in the parish office and drop it in the collection basket during any Mass. You can also return your personalized pledge card to the Diocese or donate online at If you have any questions, please contact Peggy Shaffer at


#SummerWithUs is our Youth Ministry’s Summer offering to our Youth.  You may be on Summer break but during the summer months, we hope that you spend your #SummerWithUs!  Stay tuned for Summer Events such as outings and trips, service opportunities, gatherings, and prayer experiences!  We have events on Mondays, Wednesdays, Saturdays and more. Contact Jeremy for details.

Do you have ‘mad’ communication skills?

Do you have ‘mad’ communication skills? Are you a skilled writer? Do you feel like a charter member of the Grammar Police? Are you comfortable with Word and Publisher? Do you have a sense of graphics and layout? Have you managed a social media site? Can you articulate the differences between @ and # ? How about sound and videography?

St. Raphael needs to update our use of communication technologies, our approach to managing and producing the bulletin, as well as how we reach out through social media and even print materials. Could you be part of the team? While expertise is certainly helpful we need some committed people in the trenches, assisting with production and hands-on management of the different communication venues.

Please connect with Janet Schirripa, Lay Ministry Support Coordinator at or 919.865.5704 to learn more about the various ways this team of volunteers will strengthen our parish through improving the flow of information.

Pray for Our Youth on Mission

In early June at our 11:30 AM Eucharist, our Middle and High School Missionaries to Louisville, KY and Grenada were commissioned and blessed by our Pastor and community.  The following prayer was prayed and please use the following prayer to pray for them!!!  Thank you. Youth Minister Jeremy Roca

Father, we ask you with your Son:
Stir up in our youth, their families, and chaperones the Holy Spirit
You graciously poured out upon them at their Baptism.
O Holy Spirit, we ask you to bless, challenge, and guide our missionaries as they go forth to minister in your name.
Make their heart sensitive to your presence moving within those whom they serve.
Make their hearts bold, O Holy Spirit, and lead them to step out of their comfort zone and seek you, our God, in every moment.
O Holy Spirit we ask that you also bless, challenge, and guide our parents who stands before us now.
Continue to raise them up, O Holy Spirit, to be faith-filled and joy-filled witnesses of your love to their families.
Remind them of the dignity, responsibility, and the joy of raising their family in the faith.
We ask this, we pray this, in the name of Him who is Risen, and sends us forth in mission, Christ Jesus our Lord.

Minister to Our Youth this Fall!!!

The ministry to our youth in our parish is effective when adults like YOU share your time, talent, and treasure, and when we trust our God to use us and our gifts to joyfully proclaim to our youth: Jesus Christ risen from the dead.

Over this summer reflect on whether you are being called to this ministry.  READ MORE…