NINETEENTH SUNDAY

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Our Pastor’s Message
Healing Our World

By Father Jim

Last Wednesday, after a short summer break, Pope Francis resumed his weekly General Audiences. These audiences are an opportunity for the pope to offer his blessing and a catechesis (a.k.a. religious instruction) on some matter related to the Christian life. Since 2013, Pope Francis has hosted 318 such audiences which are translated into seven different languages (Arabic, English, French, German, Polish, Portuguese, and Spanish). And he has shared his wisdom on fifteen different topics that include family life, God’s mercy, Christian hope, Christian prayer, the Lord’s Prayer, the Sacraments, the Acts of the Apostles, the Gifts of the Holy Spirit, and the Sermon on the Mount.

During this ongoing global crisis, the Holy Father’s new series is about healing the world from the physical, social, and spiritual infirmities of the present day. Pope Francis reminds us that the Church’s expertise is not disease prevention or scientific research. Ultimately, these responsibilities belong to medical experts and government leaders. But inspired by the Gospel of Christ, the Church can speak out on basic principles: the dignity of each human person, the common good, solidarity with the poor, and care for our common home. Rooted in the virtues of faith, hope, and love, Pope Francis teaches us that these principles can serve to heal the personal and societal tragedies caused by the coronavirus pandemic.

About these principles and virtues, Pope Francis says: “Within the Christian tradition, faith, hope, and love are much more than feelings or attitudes. They are virtues infused in us through the grace of the Holy Spirit: gifts that heal us and make us healers; gifts that open us to new horizons, even while we are navigating the difficult waters of our time. Renewed contact with the Gospel of faith, hope, and love invites us to assume a creative and renewed spirit. In this way, we can transform our physical, spiritual, and social infirmities; and the destructive practices that separate us from each other and threaten the human family and our planet.” Pope Francis makes clear that the coronavirus is not the only contagion that threatens the health of the human family.

The Holy Father calls us to a renewed commitment to the common good; a renewed spirit of social responsibility; and a renewed dedicated to taking better care of each other and our mother earth. He asks: “In what way can we help heal our world?” As disciples of the Risen Jesus, what can we do to live the Gospel, share God’s love, and rebuild the Church? What can we do to bring the virtues of faith, hope, and love into our suffering world? Even wile we practice social distancing, what can we do to help heal our corner of the world? We can start by picking up the litter on our streets; reaching out with love to our neighbors; refusing to engage in the dark madness of division; and remembering the Golden Rule in all that we think, do, and say. We can all manage that, right?

During the coming weeks, Pope Francis plans to explore these themes more deeply by turning to the holy scriptures and the Church’s social teachings. The Vatican News Service now broadcasts the Holy Father’s Wednesday General Audience with a simultaneous English translation. You can watch by clicking the link below. Trust in God! Believe in science! Pray without ceasing! Love your neighbor! Wear a mask! Peace and blessings to all!

Watch: Pope Francis General Audience
CCGR Weekly Newsletter (8-9-20)
Bringing Home the Word (8-9-20) 
New! The Kids Bulletin (8-9-20) 
Home Prayer Service

Pastor’s Note: Even though we can’t gather together in our usual way right now, we can still pray together. Using the links below, all are invited and encouraged to sanctify the various times of the day with these prayers for God’s mercy, healing, and protection from all illness. Let’s pray together! Ever together in prayer! — Father Jim

Listen: Our Daily Prayers
Liturgy of the Hours
Morning Prayer: Novena to the Sacred Heart

Midday Prayer: The Angelus
Evening Prayer: Saint Joseph, Hope of the Sick
Bedtime Prayer: The Memorare

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Call to Prayer
A Litany of Supplication, Part II

As the coronavirus pandemic engulfed the Vatican City, the Republic of Italy, and much of the European Union, Pope Francis offered this Litany of Supplication on March 27, 2020 during the so-called “Extraordinary Moment of Prayer” at Saint Peter’s Basilica. During this unique and moving prayer service, the Holy Father offered a blessing for the health and healing of the whole world.

Deliver us, O Lord.
From the power of Satan
and the seductions of the world.

Deliver us, O Lord.
From the pride and presumption
of being able to do anything without you.

Deliver us, O Lord.
From the deceptions of fear and anxiety.

Deliver us, O Lord.
From unbelief and desperation.

Deliver us, O Lord.
From hardness of heart and the inability to love.

Deliver us, O Lord.
From every evil that afflicts humanity.

Save us, O Lord.
From hunger, from famine, and from egotism.

Save us, O Lord.
From illness, epidemic,
and fear of our brothers and sisters.

Save us, O Lord.
From devastating madness,
ruthless interests, and violence.

Save us, O Lord.
From being deceived by false information
and the manipulation of our consciences.

Glory to the Father,
to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit;
as it was in the beginning,
is now, and will be forever. Amen.

Sacred Heart of Jesus, have mercy on us!
Saint Ann, pray for us! Saint Joachim, pray for us!
Saint Anthony, pray for us! Saint Peter, pray for us!
Our Lady of Good Voyage, pray for us!
Our Lady of the Immaculate Conception, pray for us!

Watch: Extraordinary Moment of Prayer with Pope Francis

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The Living Rosary
A Virtual Summer Retreat
Begins Tuesday, September 8th

Unfortunately, because of necessary restrictions on large gatherings related to the coronavirus pandemic, it has become necessary to cancel plans for our annual in-person summer retreat. In our disappointment, we turned in prayer to the Blessed Mother for advice and consolation:

Let us entrust to the Virgin Mary
our trials and tribulations,
together with our joys and consolations.
Let us beg her to look upon us with love,
especially during times of trial,
and make us worthy of beholding,
today and always,
the merciful face of her son, Jesus!
Amen! Amen!

This powerful prayer by Pope Francis inspires us to announce our first-ever Virtual Summer Retreat: The Living Rosary from Tuesday, September 8th through Saturday, September 12th! Stay tuned! More information coming next weekend! Until then, check out our easy-to-use guide to praying the Holy Rosary (click link below)! Peace and blessings to all! — Father Jim

Learn More: Pray the Rosary

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Sharing God’s Love
Penance & Reconciliation
The Sacrament of Mercy

As sinners, we acknowledge our faults and failures. We also believe deeply in God’s boundless mercy and limitless love for us. The Sacrament of Penance & Reconciliation (Confession) offers each of us a unique opportunity to reconcile ourselves with both God and the Church. The Sacrament is comprised of the following elements: sorrow for our sins, confession of those sins to a priest, a prayer of personal contrition (see below), absolution by a priest, and some act of penance and reconciliation.

An Act of Contrition

My God,
I am sorry for my sins with all my heart.
In choosing to do wrong,
and failing to do good,
I have sinned against you,
whom I should love above all else.
I firmly intend with the help of your grace,
to do penance, to sin no more,
and to avoid whatever leads me to sin. Amen.

The Catholic Community of Gloucester & Rockport has resumed our celebrations of the Sacrament of Penance & Reconciliation in accordance with the health and safety guidelines of the Archdiocese of Boston and the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. Confessions will be heard by appointment on Thursdays and Fridays in Our Lady of Good Voyage Parish Hall. All penitents are required to wear a mask and maintain a safe social distance of six feet at all times. If you would like to make an appointment for confession, please contact Father Jim at frjim@ccgronline.com.

Learn More: Making a Good Confession

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WeShare
Electronic Giving
Your Generosity Matters!

Now more than ever, generosity matters! Your weekly gifts are essential to the financial health and well-being of both Holy Family Parish and Our Lady of Good Voyage Parish. Our parishes depend solely on the generosity of our fellow parishioners! We still need your help to pay our bills, make ends meet, and help ensure the short-term and long-term financial stability of our beloved and historic parish communities. Every dollar makes a difference! All friends, neighbors, and fellow parishioners of the Catholic Community of Gloucester & Rockport are encouraged to mail their offering or give electronically (click links below). Our mailing address is 74 Pleasant Street, Gloucester, Massachusetts 01930. In addition, our WeShare program is a safe and easy way to make donations to your home parish using a credit card, debit card, or electronic check. Put simply, your weekly support matters like never before! For more information about how to support our parishes during these difficult days, please contact Father Jim at frjim@ccgronline.com. Thank you for your generous support! Peace and blessings to all! — Father Jim

Support Holy Family Parish
Support Our Lady of Good Voyage Parish

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About Us

Established in 2014, the Catholic Community of Gloucester & Rockport is a collaborative of two historic parishes: Holy Family Parish and Our Lady of Good Voyage Parish. Working together as a Roman Catholic community united in prayer, fellowship, and service, we are committed to living the Gospel of Christ, sharing God’s love and mercy with all people, and rebuilding the Church in Gloucester & Rockport. All are invited! All are welcome! Always!

Follow us on Twitter: @CCGRonline