Our Pastor’s Message
A Father’s Day Reflection
During my recent vacation with family and friends in the Azores, I thought a lot about fatherhood. Perhaps it was because my dad was traveling with me and we visited the village where he was born, raised, and married my mother. Perhaps it was because I have entered a new decade of life by celebrating my fortieth birthday. Perhaps it was because I just completed one year as a pastor, a ministry that calls me to serve as a “spiritual father” to more than four thousand families. Or perhaps it was some combination of all of these factors. In any case, I have been thinking a great deal lately about fatherhood.
A friend recently asked me to describe my dad with just three words. After a quick prayer and a long pause, I responded that my dad is prayerful, hardworking, and trustworthy. As a young man, just married, my dad immigrated to the United States from Sao Miguel Island in the Azores in search of a better life. He and my mom found that better life, but the work was hard and the struggle was long. He found a good and steady job, learned English, bought a home, raised three children, and achieved his dream.
Nearly two decades after graduating from college and leaving home for the seminary, I continue to marvel at how my dad managed to balance the demands of work and family. But he did it with great courage and perseverance. As a younger man, he could be fiery in temperament and temper. But now, in his early seventies and after undergoing a life-changing Cursillo experience, my dad’s inner calm and spiritual peace fills our family home and is a real blessing to everyone who knows him.
For those who know me well, they know that I am very close to my mom. We are much alike in demeanor, energy, and personality. But lately, given the challenging and rewarding work of parish ministry, I have begun to think more about my dad and how he might handle this issue or that problem. I have begun to appreciate his prayerfulness, his work ethic, and his honesty like never before. And I have begun to say a silent prayer of thanksgiving each and every time that I see my dad or think about all that he has done for me, my mom, and my siblings.
My father is fond of saying, “That’s it!” as a way of ending a conversation about almost any topic. This Father’s Day, please join me in prayer for our fathers, grandfathers, and godfathers (both living and deceased). Let us give thanks for their sacrifice, their hard work, and their prayers for us as we grew and went our own way in life. And this Father’s Day, let us always remember to give God thanks for those fathers and father-figures in our lives who have loved us, prayed for us, and worked for a better world. Happy Father’s Day! That’s it!
Peace and blessings to all,
Reverend James M. Achadinha, Pastor
Catholic Community of Gloucester & Rockport
A Prayer for Fathers
We pray for young fathers, newly embracing their vocation:
May they find courage and perseverance
to balance work, family, and faith in both joy and sacrifice. Amen!
We pray for fathers around the world whose children are lost and suffering:
May they know that the God of compassion walks with them in their sorrow. Amen!
We pray for men who are not fathers
but mentor and guide us with fatherly love and advice:
May they know that God guides them and blesses their work among us. Amen!
We pray for the souls of our deceased fathers, grandfathers, and godfathers
who are no longer with us but live forever in memory and still nourish us with their love:
May God bless them with his heavenly grace. Amen!
Assisi Project Online
“My Friend Frank (Parts I & II)”
This year, as it welcomes new members from the Catholic Community of Gloucester & Rockport, the Assisi Project is returning to its beginnings by focusing on the early life and conversion of Saint Francis of Assisi. All are welcome to join us online at assisiproject.com for two new reflections about the life and times of Saint Francis of Assisi: “My Friend Franks (Parts I & II).” The Assisi Project will meet again on Sunday, July 12th for its Eighth Annual Summer Barbecue beginning with Mass at 11:45am at Our Lady of Good Voyage Church. For more information about the Assisi Project and its upcoming opportunities for prayer, fellowship, and faith formation in the Franciscan spiritual tradition, please visit our website or contact Cliff Garvey at firstname.lastname@example.org. Please join us! All are welcome! May the Lord give you peace!
The Holy Rosary
All are invited to join the Catholic Community of Gloucester & Rockport every morning after Daily Mass as we pray the Holy Rosary. By praying the Rosary, we grow closer to our Risen Lord by meditating on the mysteries of his life, death, and resurrection; and we grow closer to our Blessed Mother by asking for her intercession for ourselves, our parishes, and for the whole world. For more information, please contact Father Jim at email@example.com or see a member of our pastoral team. Please join us! All are welcome!
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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