Father Raymond East | St. Teresa of Avila, Washington, DC
Submitted by: Gwendolin Herder
I experienced this from afar via email, but I could see that Fr. East immediately in March reached out to his parish, then went on to create amazing outreach from weekly online programs for kids, families, elders etc. to "drive-by-confessions" and even a weekly "the masked parishioner" competition. At St. Teresa of Avila people were cared for in a direct and personal way and were given ways to stay connected with each other and the community all through the pandemic. No one was left alone and there was a lot of praying going on there. www.stachurchdc.org
He cared for the lives and souls for all his parishioners and was immensely creative in how to do so mostly online but also in person where possible. He also made sure people stayed connected with one another. St. Teresa never ceased to pray.
Fr. Ray is an extraordinary priest who has inspired many people to joine the catholic Church; he leads people to faith and faith practice and Christian community in ways not seen that often. The faith and creativity he generated in his parish to get through the lockdown was and is very inspiring and gives a lot of hope for Catholic parishes.
Thank you for your initiative, it will be so helpful to see that there were indeed parishes that did more than send a weekly link to online mass.