CARIBOU, Maine — The Catholic Extension has named Fr. David Raymond a nominee for the 2018-19 Lumen Christi Award, an annual honor given to an individual or group who demonstrates how the power of faith can transform lives and communities.
Catholic Extension is a national fundraising organization which provides funding and resources to dioceses and parishes through programs and services investing in people, infrastructure, and ministries.
Raymond is the pastor of the Parish of the Precious Blood (Holy Rosary Church, Caribou; Sacred Heart Church, Caribou; Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary Church, Presque Isle; Our Lady of the Lake Church, Portage; St. Catherine Church, Washburn; St. Denis Church, Fort Fairfield; St. Joseph Church, Mars Hill; St. Louis Church, Limestone; St. Mark Church, Ashland; St. Theresa Church, Stockholm).
As a nominee, Raymond will receive a $1,000 grant to help with his work in the parishes he serves in rural Maine.
“Our church community in Limestone established an ecumenical food pantry at the time of the base closing,” said Raymond. “We rely on donations and on the Good Shepherd Food Bank. The $1,000 will be used to purchase a freezer to replace an old and inefficient freezer currently in use. This is such a great help to us and our ministry to the community.”
Lumen Christi Award nominees are described as “hidden heroes.” The hope Fr. Raymond brings to those around him has served as inspiration to many. He addresses immediate needs in the community through food pantries and looks to create sustainable changes for those in need through the creation of financial literacy mentoring programs, healthy cooking classes, and nutrition and physical wellness programs at the parish.
“I cannot separate what I do with who I am,” said Raymond. “I am called to be the light of Christ in whatever I do. I am called to be a servant to everyone entrusted to me. My faith is a gift, and my work naturally flows from my faith.”
Born in Fort Kent, Raymond attended Frenchville schools before graduating from Wisdom High School in St. Agatha. He earned a bachelor’s degree from the University of Maine at Fort Kent, majoring in education and history, and earned the Presidential Award for Academic Excellence. Shortly after graduation, he entered the U.S. Peace Corps and served as a TEFL (Teaching English as a First Language) teacher in Pala, Chad.
After returning home, he spent 22 years as a teacher in SAD 33 (Frenchville and St. Agatha). In addition to his work in the classroom, he also served in various capacities ranging from assistant principal to curriculum director. He holds a master’s degree in education from the University of Southern Maine in Gorham.
He completed his clerical studies at Theological College, the national seminary of The Catholic University of America in Washington, D.C., where he earned an S.T.B. degree. Hed was ordained to the priesthood by Bishop Joseph J. Gerry, O.S.B., on June 7, 2003, at St. Luce Church in Frenchville. Upon his ordination, Fr. Raymond was appointed parochial vicar at Holy Rosary Parish in Caribou, St. Louis Parish in Limestone and St. Denis Parish in Fort Fairfield. In 2005 he became parochial vicar at St. Mark Parish in Ashland, St. Mary Parish in Presque Isle and St. Joseph Parish in Mars Hill, and in 2007 at at Sacred Heart Parish in North Caribou and St. Theresa Parish in Stockholm.
In July of 2008, he became pastor of St. Agnes Parish in Island Falls and St. Mary of the Visitation Parish in Houlton, where he served until being appointed pastor of the Parish of the Precious Blood in July 2017.
For more information, visit https://theppbholyrosary.weshareonline.org/index or www.catholicextension.org/stories/2018-lumen-christi-award-nominees.