“Then the righteous will answer and
say, ‘Lord, when did we see You hungry and feed You, or thirsty and
give You drink? When did we see You a stranger, and welcome you, or
naked and clothe you? When did we see You ill or in prison and visit
You?’ And the king will say to them in reply, ‘Amen, I say to you,
whatever you did for one of these least sisters and brothers of
Mine, you did for Me.’ ”
Jesus’ teaching that “whatever you do for the least of my brothers
and sisters, you do for Me” (Mt. 25:40), and rooted in the mission
of our faith community, the vision of St. Raphael Parish Social
Ministry is to help all parishioners recognize that their baptism
calls them to be ambassadors of hope through direct service for
others, and advocacy for a just and peaceful world.
The definition of Parish Social
Ministry is the empowerment of the parish as the people of God to
fulfill the Church’s mission of love, justice, freedom and peace by
communally responding in an organized way to societal and individual
human needs. Parish Social Ministry: A Vision and a Resource
(The National Conference of Catholic Charities, 1985).
The vision of
Parish Social Ministry is to assist parishioners, through parish
community, to understand and act on Catholic Social Teaching.
Parish Social Ministry: Strategies for Success (Tom Ulrich,
Based on parish
volunteers who have committed themselves to helping the people of
our community, Parish Social Ministry is a vibrant, growing part of
our faith community. Volunteers give freely of their time and
talents providing assistance to those with basic needs, striving to
minister compassionately, with sensitivity and confidentiality,
hopefully treating each person with the dignity that each sister and
brother deserves in Christ.
Ministry provides assistance in three different ways:
Service, working with the St. Vincent de Paul Society,
(distribution of food, clothing, furniture, assistance with
shelter needs, transportation, visitation, telephone
reassurance, financial assistance and special services)
support groups such as Initial Bereavement, Lazarus Ongoing
Bereavement, Ministry of Consolation, Caregivers, Don’t Eat
Alone, Merry Seniors, Kids & Us
(speaking out for the vulnerable in our society in an effort to
move beyond charity to justice).
Teaching: Seven Basic Principles
Dignity of the Human Person.
person is precious; people are more important than things; the
measure of every institution is whether it threatens or enhances
Family, Community, and Participation.
is not only sacred, but social; marriage and family are central
social institutions; people have a right and duty to participate
in society, seeking the common good and well-being of all.
person has fundamental right to life and those things required
for human decency; corresponding to these rights are duties and
responsibilities to one another, to our families, and to
the larger society
for the Poor and Vulnerable.
moral test is how our most vulnerable members are faring,
recalling the Last Judgment (Mt. 25:31-46) to put their needs
Dignity of Work and the Rights of Workers.
rights must be respected: to productive work, fair wages,
organizing unions, private property and economic initiative.
We are one
human family; we are our brothers’ and our sisters’ keepers; our
love for all demands that we promote peace and justice in a
world surrounded by violence and conflict.
Care for All God's
We show respect for
our Creator by stewardship of creation; the environmental
challenge has fundamental moral and ethical dimensions.
Parish Social Ministry
at St. Raphael's
The first office
was a small room in the rectory basement. Today, PSM occupies the
first floor in the front of the Convent, and is staffed by Sister
Judy Fay, CSJ (Coordinator), 36 office core volunteers, and numerous
auxiliary volunteers. The office is staffed from 10 AM – 3 PM,
Monday through Friday. The office telephone is 516-308-3808.
ministries and services are:
Parish volunteers assist once weekly for three hours, or on a
substitute basis, in areas including phone work, assisting food
pantry guests, transportation calls, and referrals for
assistance in various areas
Vincent de Paul Society.
Members work with PSM to
respond to emergency needs within the community. Meet monthly.
Donation and collection of
foods, paper and cleaning products given to individuals and
families in need in parish area.
Anthony Ministry. Volunteers
bring food donated by parishioners from Str. Anthony statue in
Church to the Food Pantry in PSM office after Mass.
Bereavement Support Group.
Trained facilitators hold eight-week group sessions in the fall
and spring to provide support and information to those in the
initial grieving process (two months – two years).
Group. Bi-weekly meetings with a nurse facilitator for
people dealing with all cancer types and stages.
Volunteer parishioners using their own vehicles who provide
rides to and from medical appointments for parishioners.
Hopemobile Drivers & Companions. Provide
scheduled rides for seniors and wheelchair-bound parishioners to
Mass, food shopping, and medical appointments in our parish van
(initial home visit required to prospective passengers). May
serve weekly, monthly, seasonally. Valid NYS state driver’s
Visitors and Callers. Make
periodic visits to homebound parishioners or make weekly phone
calls to nurture the parish community connection.
Monthly meetings are held for those caring for aging and
chronically family members.
Page Updated February 7,
© 2010 Parish of St. Raphael. All Rights Reserved