St. Raphael values the continuing, life-long education of all parishioners. There are a variety of educational opportunities throughout the year. This includes a comprehensive faith formation program. Our Catholic tradition, heritage, and theology are so rich and deep that each of us is compelled to continue learning about our Faith through our life's journey.
As an adjunct to Adult Education, Bible Study addresses various books of the Hebrew and Christian Scriptures that allow participants to uncover the historical and academic aspects of the Bible. While the intellectual dimension is primary in our scripture study, the sessions also provide the opportunity for participants to uncover the faith dimension of scripture.
The Sacrament of the Eucharist is the heart and center of our lives as Catholic Christians. It is the sacrament that we can come to again and again to find spiritual nourishment, to experience forgiveness, to grow in holiness, and to be unified. Children in the second grade and their parents are prepared for their initial reception of this sacrament. In addition to the Religion curriculum offered in St. Raphael School and the Parish School of Religion (PSR), they participate in a First Eucharist Sacramental Program.
St. Raphael School educates students from kindergarten through grade eight, serving families from 10 neighboring cities. The Mission Statement of our school reads "Saint Raphael School is a Catholic community where we live our faith and learn through a commitment to academic excellence.” Our National Blue Ribbon School of Excellence is recognized as one of the top grade schools in the eight-county diocesan area of Cleveland and northeast Ohio. Ann Miller, (440) 871-6760
PSR: Parish School of Religion
St. Raphael Parish School of Religion (PSR) is a Catholic Religious Education Program for parish children in Grades 1 to 8 who attend public school. It is staffed by a Director, Secretary of Religious Education, thirty-five catechists and numerous parent volunteers. Offering a blend of catholic information and spiritual formation, the comprehensive program presents Religion classes on Monday afternoons and evenings throughout the school year. Also included are a Spiritual Olympics program, social justice service projects, prayer services, Stations of the Cross, May Crowning and an all-school Mass. A Home –School Religion option is available to families of students in grades 1, and 3-7.
Home & School Association
The role of Home & School Association is to support the school administration. Teachers and parents unite in a unique way to help secure for each child the fullest advantage in religious, mental, social and physical education. Good communication between parents and teachers is encouraged. It also provides a means for people to become involved in the parish community through school. Teresa Hardy, (440) 779-9999
All teens in grades 9 through 12 are welcome in the high school youth ministry program (HSYM). This group generally meets every Sunday evening (during the school year) for prayer, social events/outings, service and catechesis. The comprehensive approach to youth ministry offers our teens the opportunity for field trips, leadership, development, retreats, service outreach and participation in diocesan and national Catholic youth ministry events. The High School Youth Ministry Program is always looking for adult volunteers to serve in many and varied capacities. Adults interested in volunteering must interview with the Director of Youth Ministry, attend the Diocesan Virtus Training, and undergo a background check.
Baptism is the first sacrament of initiation that makes a person a child of God and an heir to God's promises of eternal salvation. Parents and Godparents are required to attend an instructional class for this sacrament prior to the conferral of Baptism for their first child. This class is held on the first Sunday of every month. Baptisms are celebrated on the remaining Sundays of the month.
Confirmation is the sacrament that seals the recipient with the Holy Spirit and bestows gifts that enable the confirmed Christian to live courageously for Jesus Christ. Eighth graders participate in a year-long sacramental preparation program that begins in the Spring of 7th grade and culminates with the celebration of Confirmation the following spring. Adults wishing to receive the Sacrament of Confirmation should contact Fr. Steve Breck.
The Sacrament of Reconciliation is the sacrament through which we personally experience God's forgiveness and unconditional love. It also has a communal aspect. Our sins injure the Body of Christ. We can be reconciled to God and to one another, through the absolution by the priest, when we are truly sorry. The First Reconciliation Program is in conjunction with the First Eucharist Program. Second graders and their families participate in specific requirements for the reception of this sacrament.
St. Raphael Preschool Religion classes are offered throughout the school year for three, four and five-year olds of the parish. Volunteer parents, assisted by student aides present age-appropriate lessons on our Catholic faith, bible stories, prayers and seasons of the liturgical year. Classes take place in the primary and intermediate classrooms of St. Raphael School during the 9:30 a.m. Sunday Mass.
The Raiders Club is a before and after School care program for the working families of the St Raphael school children. The Club meets in the Raphael Center and accepts children in Grades Kindergarten through Sixth. The morning club includes quiet activities and games. The afternoon club includes a snack, homework time and other educational, yet fun activities such as crafts, recreational activities, special events, field trips, computer time, movies and more. The club meets on days when school is in session. If you have a talent for creative activities that you would like to share with the children in the afternoon program, please contact:
Vacation Bible School
St. Raphael Catholic Vacation Bible School is a five-day program offered during the last week of July for children age four through those entering 5th grade. Each year's scriptural theme is presented daily through large general sessions with dynamic music. Smaller group activities offer the children opportunities to learn about a Saint of the Day and Catholic Identity word. Games, Arts & Crafts, Snacks and Bible Story time reinforce a biblical point, virtues and prayers of our faith. Teen helpers entering Grades 6-12, along with adult volunteers, make this lively week a memorable celebration for children and families of all ages.
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