From the Pastor (May 17, 2020)

Dear Parishioners,

This week marks a poignant, dispiriting moment for those young St. Raphael parishioners who were preparing to celebrate their Sacrament of Confirmation (in a joint ceremony with Queen of Angels Church) this past Thursday, or to celebrate their First Holy Communion here this very weekend. In several cases, family plans were formulated long in advance, with celebration sites booked and relatives planning to travel some distance to witness the event.

We are still waiting to see how these situations will be resolved as the pandemic evolves, but we all feel so bad for these candidates having their life-milestone put on hold.

As with public and Catholic schools, there will be no return to parish Faith Formation / Religious Education / CCD classes until after the summer. We are grateful to our catechists for keeping in active touch with their students each week.

At this point in the month of May, we broach the season of Quinceañeras / Sweet 16’s, along with special Ethnic Liturgies and a couple of weddings. Most of those involved knew they need to
reschedule, until churches re-open their doors. We wish we had more specific information to share regarding this, but we do not at this point. The latest directive from above (5/13/20) remains: no
public Masses until further notice…churches will remain closed.

We remind you once more that we live-stream the Mass bilingually each Sunday at 11 am. See the info at the top of this page and join us for online worship.

We also remind you that our online giving platform has been set up and is already in use.

Visit our parish website (https://straphael-queens.org) and click on WAYS TO GIVE or the word DONATE to learn how to use this tool. You can also text SUNDAY 646-692-0050 to donate. Our church and all other churches are weakened financially by the pandemic. Heartfelt thanks also to those who send a contribution in the mail or drop it through the rectory door slot.

Our Food Pantry ministry has increased enormously in recent times. A week ago Saturday, a man phoned the office in the late morning (more than two hours before the opening time) and said,“The line is already five blocks long. If I join it, what are the odds I’ll get food?”. He was, of course, taken care of, thanks to our indefatigable volunteers.

By the way, the Pantry thanks its latest individual donors, as well as Boy Scout Troop 390 at St. Teresa’s (donation totaling $826.18), NY Presbyterian “Stronger Together” for the Breakfast Bags, and Sterling Affair. Much obliged on all counts!

-Father Jerry Jecewiz