Formation Ministries

Each formation ministry requires volunteers to fill a variety of roles.  Catechists are responsible for teaching the Catholic faith through classroom lessons and activities. They commit to pursing catechetical certification and continuing education.  Classroom helpers assist the catechists in various ways.  They set an example for others by living their faith but do not necessarily pursue catechetical certification.  The retreats and Safari and some of the other formation ministries need volunteers for a variety of non-catechetical roles such as registration and safety patrol.  ALL adult volunteers who work with children in the Archdiocese of Cincinnati must complete a 3-hour VIRTUS training course and pass a background screening.

Adult Education/Bible Study

September through May, adults are invited to join in continuing study and growth in our Catholic faith.  God continues to speak to us throughout our lives, but we need to feed our spiritual life with good food.  Several groups meet weekly at both campuses.  New groups are formed as a need arises.  All are welcome to participate in the groups!  For a list of groups currently meeting or to volunteer as a catechist, contact Lisa Lenard at the parish office.

Advent & Lenten Retreats

Teams come together 2-3 months before Advent or Lent begins to plan these two intergenerational retreats each year.  Volunteers are needed to serve in planning, food preparation, children’s activities, registration, music, and facilitating teen/adult discussions.  Contact Lisa Lenard at the parish office if you would like to be part of this ministry.

Baptism Preparation

Parents requesting the baptism of their child are required to attend an instructional program in preparation for this life-altering event.  During this class, participants review the meaning of baptism, the baptismal rite, symbols associated with baptism, and the role of the Sponsor. Classes are held at the St. Joseph Parish Center on a monthly basis.  Contact Lisa Lenard at the parish office if you would like to be part of this ministry.


The parish religious education program for children pre-school through 12th grade meets on Sunday mornings during the school year from 9:00-10:10 am. If your child is not in a Catholic School, we encourage participation in this program. All Catechists are volunteers from the parish, and courses are offered to assist in facilitating classes.  We are always looking for new catechists and classroom helpers.  Contact Deacon Norm Horstman or Lisa Lenard at the parish office if you would like to be part of this ministry.



Nursery care can be provided during the St. Raphael masses whenever there is both need for the nursery and people willing to provide that care.  The nursery is located in the church undercroft (Hoban Hall).  The nursery is typically for children birth to age 3.  We encourage all parents who would like to use the nursery to step forward to volunteer on a regular, rotating basis.  Ideally, we would like enough volunteers so that nursery workers are scheduled at the most once per month, preferably once every other month.  Teens are welcome to assist adults. All adult volunteers for the nursery are required to attend the VIRTUS Child Protection Training and a fingerprint screening.  Contact Deacon Norm Horstman or Lisa Lenard at the parish office if you would like to be part of this ministry.

Marriage Preparation

Volunteer married couples are needed to meet with engaged couples to discuss various areas of communication. To volunteer for this ministry contact Fr. Kramer.

Scripture Safari

Scripture Safari is our parish Vacation Bible School.  We have gathered together the children of this parish and the wider community since 1986.  Volunteers are vital to our Safari.  We need teens entering the 7th grade and older to serve as teen helpers.  We need adults to lead classes and assist.  We need people to work in areas such as snacks, games, music and performance.  Scripture Safari begins the Monday following the fair which usually places it in the final days of July and into the 1st week of August.  Teen volunteers are asked to attend a training prior to Safari.  Contact Patty Larger, Deacon Norm Horstman, or Lisa Lenard if you would like to assist with any part of Safari.


The Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults is the process through which adults and children seven years of age and older come into the Catholic Church.  All begin with a time of Inquiry or questioning. This is a time to get answers to basic questions, begin to build relationships, and enter the process of finding a sponsor and choosing the right path of formation. The period of formal formation follows inquiry. These sessions meet from August through the Easter season.  During this time Catechumens and Candidates journey toward reception of the Sacraments of Initiation.  The newly initiated Catholics then continue to meet for further formation, called Mystagogia, until Pentecost.  If you are interested in working with the team, or walking with someone as a sponsor, contact Lisa Lenard at the parish office.

Young Adult Ministry

The goal of Young Adult Ministry is to enable young adults to deepen their faith in Jesus Christ and strengthen their ties to the Universal Church and the Parish while encouraging them to take an active role in the Church's Mission in the world and connecting them with peers in their faith community.  All parts of this ministry are driven by the needs and desires of young adults in this community.  If you are a young adult who sees or feels a need or desire for a particular event or activity, please call Deacon Norm Horstman or Lisa Lenard at the parish office.

Youth Group Core Team

Youth activities are planned by the Youth Ministry Core Team.  The team is composed of students and adults who gather on the 1st Sunday of the month at noon in the St. Raphael Parish Center.  The Core Team is open to all high school-aged members of the parish.  Youth ministry is built on the relationships between Jesus, the high school student and other members of the parish.  All activities are to help these relationships to grow and bear fruit.  Each member of the Core Team and any other student who requests one will have a Prayer Partner.  This is an adult member of the parish who will pray for and with the student throughout their high school years.  They are there for each other as they face the joys and challenges of life.  If you are interested in volunteering for core team or as a prayer partner in being an adult chaperone for an activity, please call Deacon Norm Horstman at the parish office.

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