Q&A with Father Rafal

Every month we sit down with Father Rafal to ask him questions we received from people in the parish. Below is a list of his past questions and answers. 

If you would like to submit a question for Father Rafal, please email them to bulletin@holytrinitywestmont.org. Then stay tuned, Father Rafal may answer your question in the months to come!

What other parishes have you served at?

The first parish I served at was St. John the Baptist Parish in Johnsburg, Illinois. I spend over a year there as a transitional Deacon and newly ordained Priest. The people there were very supportive and welcoming. The parish had a school where I would always visit classrooms and get to know the little ones. Between my parish ministry, I became an assistant coach to 5th grade boys’ basketball team, even though I’ve never played the sport before. It was fun to be a part of the team and I learned a lot about basketball. 

How much time do you spend in quiet prayer in a typical day?

I always try to be faithful to my Liturgy of the Hours and daily morning Rosary. That means, I should say the Office (after my 6:15am breakfast), Morning Prayer (in the Church with a few parishioners at 7:45am before daily Mass), Midday Prayer (in the Adoration Chapel), Midafternoon Prayer (in the Rectory Chapel), Evening Prayer and Night Prayer (with Isaiah in the Rectory).

As you can see, that’s a lot of time to find to pray. If you know me, I’m a very busy Pastor these days. There are days that I am so overwhelmed with my ministry that I forget to say some of my prayers. It’s unrealistic for me to stop a meeting and tell the people that I have to stop because it’s time to pray. I believe in my heart that God knows I’m doing His work and sometimes it’s OK to forget. However, I always find time to do my examinations of conscience. It’s a great way to look back on the day and say, “When was I Jesus to the people I’ve met today.”

Those of you who don’t have a prayer life set in the busyness of your calendar, I would encourage you all to learn how to pray with the Liturgy of the Hours. You can meet me, along with other members of the parish Monday-Saturday at 7:45am in Church by the Baptismal Font.

Who is your favorite Staff member?

Oh that’s easy. Isaiah! My four year old Pitbull aka Holy Trinity Security Guard. He always is there to listen to me and keeps me company when I’m tired after a long day in the office or when I’m running around bringing healing touch of Jesus Christ to sick people. He’s super gentle with children and just loves being around people. I also call him ‘cry baby’ because he doesn’t like when he’s alone at the rectory. All in all, he plays a huge role in my ministry life.

Why do we go to confession?

That’s another easy question. I don’t know about you but all I know is that Jesus wants to forgive our sins. We come to Jesus for forgiveness in the Sacrament of Reconciliation. In this sacrament, we confess our sins to a priest. He forgives us in Jesus’ name. The grace we have lost is given back to us. I also do believe that Jesus comforts us. He strengthens us on our journey. We are reconciled with God, with the Church, and with the people we have hurt. Through this sacrament the Church celebrates Jesus’ gift of forgiveness. So I encourage all, young and old if you haven’t received the Sacrament of Reconciliation in a while please do so, you won’t regret it. His doors are open every Saturday here at Holy Trinity at 3:15pm-4:15pm. Jesus is waiting.

What is your favorite dessert?

My favorite desert is tiramisu. I learned how to make it in seminary, and ever since then it has been my favorite. I’ve also had it as a child in Poland, and loved it with tea or coffee. It’s the only dessert I like to make, although I have not made it since seminary. So, whenever I go out to different restaurants now, I like to order it. I am picky that it is moist and sweet and not too dry, and sometimes say oh I can make better.

What are your hobbies?

I’ve had a lot of them at different times. As a kid, I enjoyed collecting coins. I had an album of different coins, some rare, some not so rare, some from Poland, and some from the U.S. In high school, I was interested in collecting the state quarters when they came out. More recently, I’ve liked biking. But it’s sometimes hard to find a good trail or find the time to get away. But I like spending time outdoors, being on the road, clearing my head, and wind in my hair… What hair people will say? But I enjoy it. The hard part with a hobby is finding the time.

How did you decide on a pit bull puppy? How did you pick the name Isaiah?

My sister had a pit bull before they had kids. Now they have 4 kids. But I enjoyed spending time with their dog. Pit bulls have a bad reputation for being aggressive, but they can be very friendly. It all depends on how the dog was treated and who the owners are. I got my dog from the same friend who gave my sister her dog. He was 9-weeks-old and came from a litter of six. I wanted my dog to have a biblical name. I figured everyone should know Isaiah, he is a big prophet. As soon as I picked him up, I started calling him Isaiah. I like that he has a good holy name.

Father, are you a Cubs fan or Sox fan?

Yes, I’m a Cubs fan. I grew up on the north side of Chicago, and I’m a big fan of city. I have been to a few games at Wrigley Field and really enjoyed it. I love Wrigley Field. Hot dogs, not so much. But the whole atmosphere is very nice. And it’s cool just be to be there in the crowd.

When did you start being an altar server? Did you serve in Poland?

I started serving after I received my First Holy Communion in Poland. I was about 8-years-old. Since then, I never stopped serving. I always thought sitting in the pew was boring. I wanted to be closer to the altar and closer to the Lord. When my family moved to the United States, I signed up to serve at my new home parish, which was St. Hyacinth Basilica in Chicago. I was 10-years-old. It was a Congregation of the Resurrection parish. That is how I learned about the order.

When did you start hearing the call to be a priest?

I felt the call to the priesthood during the first year of college, but I did not answer the call until I finished college at age 25. During college, I debated what career I wanted. I changed majors a number of times, until I ended up in Seminary. I knew I wanted to be a Congregation of the Resurrection priest because I saw all the priests working at my home parish. They had a great influence on me. And I’ve always wanted to help people in need and spread the Good News.

Mass Times

Weekend Masses
Sat: 4:30pm
Sun: 7:30am, 9:30am, 11:30am, 7pm

Daily Mass - Mon-Sat: 8:15am

Confession - Sat: 3:15-4:15pm

Adoration Chapel - Open 24/7

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Holy Trinity Catholic Parish
25 E. Richmond St.

Westmont, IL 60559

Phone: 630-968-1366

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