December 25, 2016

Welcome!  Whether you are a first-time visitor, an alum coming home or one of our beloved “regulars”, we are so happy to have you with us this Christmas Day.  Your presence adds so much to our celebration!

As we look to the new year, there is only one word that comes to mind:  CENTENNIAL!

Yes, St. Raymond Parish is celebrating our Centennial in 2017.  It’s been 100 years since Fr. Francis Scanlan and our Founding Families came together to form the parish we all love.

Clearly, this is a reason to celebrate.  We have been working to put together a schedule of events that appeals to not only those who have a soft spot for St. Raymond Parish in their hearts, but to those who still have to get to know us.  Let me give you a few highlights:

The Centennial Speaker Series

So far we have four outstanding speakers booked to come to the Cathedral for talks on a range of subjects.

From March 25-28, we’ll have our parish mission which will be led by Fr. Tom McCarthy, O.S.A.  Fr. Tom  is a past president of St. Rita of Cascia High School and currently serves as the Vocation Director for the Augustinians.  He’ll be speaking on the Sacraments and comes to us with rave reviews.

On Wednesday, April 19, we are thrilled to welcome Bishop Robert Barron to the Cathedral for an evening talk.  Perhaps you know Bishop Barron from the Catholicism series on PBS, or his new Pivotal Players series, or, if you are on social media, you see Bishop Barron gracefully evangelizing through his Word on Fire organization.  This will be a ticketed event.  Watch and Facebook for ticket details in January.

Matthew Kelly will be presenting his “Living Every Day with Passion and Purpose” program on Saturday. June 10.  Tickets for this day-long seminar are currently on sale at  Matthew is the author of Resisting Happiness, the book you’ll receive today. This event will sell out.

And finally, we are eager to welcome Fr. John Kartje back to the Cathedral for a talk on the relationship between religion and science.  Fr. Kartje is the Rector of Mundelein Seminary, an astrophysicist and a biblical scholar.  He was with us last summer for a Year of Mercy event, and his ability to present complicated and seemingly contradictory information is stellar.  We are working on a date for fall 2017.

Homecoming Festival

SAVE THE DATE:  On July 1-2, we are hosting an incredible Homecoming Festival on parish grounds.  We are booking a great slate of live music including some local bands that include alumni and parishioners.  We are thisclose to signing some great Chicago-area festival bands…think Fab Four, Motown and a whole lotta    dancing in the streets.  

We are also working on a slate of great food and drink, kids’ entertainment and games, alumni events, and Cathedral tours.  On Sunday, July 2, we’ll have a Homecoming liturgy with alumni clergy concelebrating.

This is just some of what will be planned in 2017, so you want to be sure you keep in touch.  Here’s how:

· Sign-up for Centennial update emails at our website

· Like our Facebook page…Cathedral of St. Raymond Parish and School

· Like our alumni Facebook page...Cathedral of St. Raymond Alumni

· Read our bulletin each week at

Thanks for being with us!  Merry Christmas!

Eileen Hooks Gutierrez
Director of Development
815-722-6653, ext 242

P.S.  Huge thanks to Dick Schuster (’54) for videotaping our Centennial Opening Liturgy earlier this month.  Dick will be running his footage on Channel 6—JCTV this week.  Check it out Monday-Friday at 9:00 a.m., noon and 6:00 p.m.



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