Email Newsletter May

The month of May is dedicated to the Blessed Virgin Mary and to all mothers.  We celebrate these women in a special way this month. You can read the weekly bulletin or visit the parish website for more details about this month's activities.

First Holy Communion - Saturday, May 1st


Congratulations to the 38 children receiving First Communion throughout the month of May.  We know the Church will be filled with excited parents and grandparents, as the children receive Jesus in the Sacrament of the Eucharist for the first time.  What joy this day brings!   [Don't forget to get your First Communion picture next to the statue of St. Raphael!]

Consecration to St. Joseph & Marian Congress

You are invited to join Bishop Parkes in prayer this Saturday, May 1st at 12 noon as he consecrates the Diocese of St. Petersburg to St. Joseph, Spouse of Mary. This will take place at the Cathedral of St. Jude the Apostle, in St. Petersburg. You are invited to join in person or via Livestream

This year’s Marian Congress will be a virtual gathering on Saturday, May 8th. The theme is, “Mary Welcomes You With Open Arms.”  The keynote speaker is Father Chris Alar, MIC, National Shrine of The Divine Mercy.  There is no cost to participate. At 11:30 a.m., Bishop Gregory Parkes will celebrate Mass and lead participants in a renewal of consecration to the Immaculate Heart of Mary. All Catholics are encouraged to participate virtually.   To learn more, visit

Happy Mother’s Day

We are offering the annual spiritual bouquet for those who would like to remember their mothers (living or deceased) on Mother’s Day, May 10th.  To make a Mother's Day Spiritual Gift you can fill out the electronic form here, by May 1st.  The suggested offering is $10 and can be submitted through online giving.  Mothers will be remembered at all Masses on Sunday, May 10th.

May Crowning

On Saturday, May 8th the CCW will honor the Blessed Mother with a May Crowning at their monthly 8am Mass.  The school children will honor the Blessed Mother at a School Only Mass on Thursday, May 6th. 

 Hail, Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with you.  Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the fruit of your womb, Jesus.  Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners now and at the hour of our death.  Amen!

Listening Session

Dr. Bryan Froehle is a parish consultant and has been working with us for the past few months. He began back in December working with staff and some of our ministries. He will be visiting May 6-9th, to continue working with parish groups and begin working with a new grouping of ministries.  Saturday, May 8th, 3:00pm-4:30pm and Sunday, May 9th, 10:00am-12:00pm will be our preliminary parish listening sessions. These sessions are great for us as a parish leadership team to hear how God has been present to and worked through this community in past and looking towards the future. All are invited. There will be another formal listening session in the Fall. 

School Auction


Join us on Friday, May 14th starting at 6pm for the St. Raphael School Auction and BBQ.  Scan the QR Code above on your phone to purchase tickets.

Congratulations to Deacon Israel Hernandez 

On Saturday, May 15th, 2021 at 11:00 am Bishop Gregory Parkes will ordain Israel "Izzie" Hernandez into the priesthood for the Diocese of St. Petersburg.  The ordination takes place at the Cathedral of St. Jude the Apostle (5815 5th Avenue North, St. Petersburg).  All are invited, but due to social distancing requirements, seating is limited.  The Mass will be available via live video stream and Spirit FM 90.5 for all.

Congratulations Graduates!

Congratulations to our eighth grade students graduating on Friday, May 28th.  Our prayers and good wishes are with them as they mark this important milestone in their lives. May God watch over them in their continuing journey.

Our thanks and appreciation to the parents, teachers and staff who have supported them through these years. 

For the remaining St. Raphael Students, classes will end on Friday, June 4th with an early dismissal!

Young Adults Mass and coffee will gather in the church courtyard right after the 11:30AM Mass and head over. If you usually attend another Mass and are only joining us for coffee, expect to get there between 12:45 and 1:00PM. This is for young adults out of High School ages 18 to 39. See you there!

Dispensation and Church Updates

As you may have heard Bishop Parkes has announced that the general dispensation will end on May 22nd and we invite you all back.  There are still exceptions such as if you are sick, please stay home.  You can read Bishops Parkes letter here.

The first weekend in May we will be opening more seating in the Church, as we prepare for more families to return.  There will be signs marking which side of the church has additional seating.  All in attendance will still be reminded and expected to wear masks while in the building and social distance where possible as we continue to help our community stay healthy.  

The Baptismal Font will be flowing again.  The water in our font is cycled, filtered, and chlorinated (like a pool) significantly reducing the possibility of passing on germs.  Whether you choose to bless yourself with the Holy Water or not is your personal choice.

Looking Ahead

During the months of June and July we will not be having the Wednesday 7pm Daily Mass and we will be moving benediction to 4pm.  We will return to the regular schedule the first Wednesday in August.  

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