This Week’s Message
A Mother’s Day Reflection
By Cliff Garvey
My parents celebrated their fiftieth wedding anniversary late last year. Since then, I have been thinking a lot about them, especially my mom. She came of age during the 1960’s, a turbulent time in our nation’s history. She married her high school sweetheart. In less than a year, she went from being someone’s daughter, to being someone’s wife, to being someone’s mother. Her husband survived Vietnam. Her younger brother did not. She and my dad struggled to buy a house and make ends meet. And all around us, the world was changing: that seemingly endless war, the cultural revolution, and the sexual revolution. It was not an easy life. And it was not an easy time to be married or to raise a child.
At so many points during their five decades together, my parents could have called it quits. But unlike so many others in our family and of their generation, they remained together. It was sometimes difficult, but their love and their marriage endured. For better or worse. For richer or poorer. In sickness and in health. In retirement now, my parents seem truly content and happy. It is a beautiful thing to watch and share with them. And I pray that they remain healthy and happy for many years to come.
My mom is an amazing person. Unlike my dad and me, she makes friends easily, loves easily, forgives easily, and never holds a grudge. She is generous and loyal beyond belief. She has close friends from infancy and kindergarten. She sends and receives dozens (if not hundreds) of cards for birthdays and holidays each year. If someone she loves is sick or grieving, she is the one who visits when others have lost hope, interest, or patience. My mom is not a saint. Like you and me, she has faults. She makes mistakes. She sometimes makes me crazy. But something beautiful and holy has happened between us. I now see in my mom qualities that so many of us see in our prayerful devotion to the Blessed Mother: boundless courage, devotion, faith, and perseverance.
When I think of Our Blessed Mother, I think of her as the mother who stood and wept at the foot of the cross. When others had fled, Mary stayed and wept as her son suffered. Thankfully, nothing so horrific has ever happened to me. But no matter what, my mom has forgiven me, loved me, sacrificed for me, and stood by me through every challenge, every failure, and every mistake. They say that the bond between mother and son is unbreakable. Our faith teaches us that. Experience teaches me that, too. This Mother’s Day, let us thank God for our mothers. Let us ask God to bless them, protect them, and strengthen them. And let us ask for the grace to love our moms like they love us — beyond all measure. Amen!
Happy Mother’s Day! May the Risen Lord give you peace!
Minister of Evangelization
Catholic Community of Gloucester & Rockport
Solemnity of the Ascension of the Lord
Thursday, May 14th
The Solemnity of the Ascension of the Lord is a Holy Day of Obligation for all Roman Catholics. On this day, we celebrate the Lord’s ascension into heaven forty days after his resurrection on Easter Sunday (See Luke 24:51; Mark 16:19; and Acts 1:9-11). In celebration of the Solemnity of the Ascension of the Lord, the Catholic Community of Gloucester & Rockport will celebrate Masses according to the following schedule:
Wednesday, May 13th
6:30pm Saint Ann Church
Thursday, May 14th
8:30am Saint Joachim Church
Noon Our Lady of Good Voyage Church
All parishioners, friends, and guests of the Catholic Community of Gloucester & Rockport are invited to join us for Mass and to receive Holy Communion in accordance with personal conscience and the teachings of the Roman Catholic Church. Please join us! All are welcome!
Saturday Morning with Saint Francis
Saturday, May 16th
More than 800 years ago, Saint Francis of Assisi encouraged a great devotion to Our Blessed Mother away of growing closer to Christ Jesus. For Francis, the Blessed Virgin Mary embodied his devotions to poverty, chastity, humility, and obedience to God’s will. As a way of encouraging that same devotion in our own times, all are invited to join the Catholic Community of Gloucester & Rockport for “Saturday Morning with Saint Francis” on Saturday, May 16th at Saint Ann Church.
Our program will begin at 7:30am with Morning Prayer from the Liturgy of the Hours and a Holy Hour of Eucharistic Adoration. At 8:30am, Father Jim will celebrate Mass. After Mass, Cliff Garvey, our Minister of Evangelization, will offer a reflection on Saint Francis of Assisi’s devotion to the Blessed Virgin Mary. We will conclude by praying the Franciscan Rosary during which we will meditate on the Seven Joys of the Blessed Virgin Mary.
After the Franciscan Rosary, all are welcome to join us for fellowship and faith sharing at Saint Ann Parish House. Coffee, tea, and light refreshments will be served. For more information, please contact Cliff Garvey at firstname.lastname@example.org. Please join us for all or part of this special morning of prayer and devotion! All are invited! All are welcome! May the Risen Lord give you peace!
Our New Worship Schedule
Begins May 30th & May 31st
In Holy Family Parish and Our Lady of Good Voyage Parish, the celebration of Mass is the source and summit of our community’s joy and the center of our life of prayer, fellowship, and service. Regardless of where we might worship, the Holy Eucharist brings God’s consolation, love, and mercy into our midst; and it brings the Real Presence of Jesus Christ into our lives and hearts! All are welcome to join us for Mass and to participate in Holy Communion in accordance with personal conscience and the teachings of the Roman Catholic Church. Beginning during the weekend of Saturday, May 30th and Sunday, May 31st, the Catholic Community of Gloucester & Rockport will celebrate Mass according to the following schedule:
Saturday Vigil Masses
4:00pm Saint Ann Church
6:00pm Our Lady of Good Voyage Church
7:00am Our Lady of Good Voyage Church
8:15am Saint Ann Church
10:00am Saint Joachim Church
11:45am Our Lady of Good Voyage Church
5:00pm Saint Ann Church (Brazilian Community)
Monday, Wednesday, and Friday at 8:00am
Our Lady of Good Voyage Church
Tuesday and Thursday at 8:00am
Saint Joachim Church
Saturday at 8:00am
Saint Ann Church
Sacrament of Penance & Reconciliation
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 (Confess) offers each of us an opportunity to reconcile ourselves with both God and the Church. The sacrament is comprised of four elements: sorrow for one’s sins, confession of those sins to a priest, absolution by a priest, and an act of penance. Beginning during the weekend of May 30th and May 31st, the Catholic Community of Gloucester & Rockport will celebrate the Sacrament of Penance & Reconciliation on Saturdays from 3:00pm-3:30pm at Saint Ann Church.
Please note that confessions are also heard by appointment. If you cannot participate in the Sacrament of Penance & Reconciliation during our regularly scheduled celebrations, please contact our pastoral office at 978-281-4820 or contact Father Jim at email@example.com. If you have questions or constructive comments about our new worship schedule, please contact Father Jim or a member of our pastoral team. Thank you for your prayers, encouragement, and support! May God bless you, your family, and all people in the Catholic Community of Gloucester & Rockport! Saint Ann pray for us! Saint Joachim, pray for us! Saint Anthony, pray for us! Our Lady of Good Voyage, pray for 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. Our collaborative is comprised of Saint Ann Church in Gloucester, Saint Anthony’s Chapel in Gloucester, Saint Joachim Church in Rockport, and Our Lady of Good Voyage Church in Gloucester. We are a Roman Catholic faith community united in prayer, fellowship, and service. For more information about becoming a member of one of our parishes, please contact Father Jim at firstname.lastname@example.org. Please join us! All are welcome!
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