Raphael P. Landreville approached his chaplaincy as a mission to assist the troops to keep God in their lives although totally immersed in a world preparing to wage war. Ray was ordained in 1955 for the Diocese of Marquette, Michigan following years of study which included the Salvatorian Seminary, St. Nainez, WI where he earned his AA. Ray continued his studies at St.Francis Major Seminary, Milwaukee, receiving his Bachelor's degree and completed his four years of studies in Theology at St.John Majory Seminary, Plymouth Michigan. After ordination to the priesthood he was assigned Assistant Pastor at the St. Francis de Sales, Manestique, Michigan. The city was located on the shores of Lake Michigan surrounded by huge forests making it an extraordinarily excellent station for fishing, hunting and golfing when not engaged in parish work. After two years he was transferred to St. Peter's Cathedral, Marquette, Michigan, spending the next four years as an assistant pastor and Athletic Director. In both parishes he was an active member of the communities, teaching school, directing school athletic programs organizing and managing youth groups and fulfilling his responsibilities to the parish community.
His father and brother served in the U.S. Army, his dad during WWI, and his older brother served in the Far East during WWII. Their respect for their service encouraged him to do likewise but in the U.S. Navy. Upon completion of the Chaplain Training Program in Newport, RI his first assignment was to the 5th Marines, Camp Pendleton, California where he participated in the Cuban Conflict, Served in Okinawa, Japan and spent two years at the Maine Supply and Maintenance base in Barstow, California. His next two years were served on the Aircraft Carrier USS Shangri-La (CVA38) touring the Mediterranian and two years at Ellyson Field Naval Air Station, Pensicola, Florida, the training base for helicopter pilots.
The commands in which he served were his parishes where he brought the Catholic faith to their daily lives through the Sacrifice of the Mass, daily and on Sundays, baptized family members and converts to the faith, ensured the children received the Sacrament of the Confirmation and members were married. Funerals, although rare, were held at naval chapels. The chapel also served as convenient location for instructing children preparing for their first Communion and Confirmation. Personal counseling absorbed a considerable amount of his time as issues on substance abuse, marriage and financial difficulties and other circumstances impacted the daily lives of the military and of their families. Ultimately, his priestly life in the military was that of a priest in a military uniform.
After completing an eight year tour, he returned to civilian life, grateful for the opportunity to bring God to the troops and the troops to God.