Our Pastor’s Message
A Word of Deepest Thanks
Gladys Bronwyn Stern (1890-1973) was a British author who wrote biographies, memoirs, novels, plays, and short stories. She was a convert to Catholicism. But she is perhaps best remembered for once writing: “Silent gratitude isn’t much use to anyone.” In that spirit, I am writing this weekend to thank every parishioner, friend, and guest of the Catholic Community of Gloucester & Rockport who contributed to the Grand Annual Collections at Holy Family Parish and Our Lady of Good Voyage Parish. Because of your generosity and support, it now appears that both of our parish budgets will be balanced for the fiscal year that ended last week. But the success of these collections is not just about making ends meet or balancing budgets, it’s about gratitude, perseverance, and miracles.
At Our Lady of Good Voyage Parish, our goal was to raise $50,000 for the Grand Annual Collection. By June 30th, we raised almost 87% of our goal. But I am not at all disappointed. In fact, I am joyful! Shortly after becoming your pastor just over three years ago, I was informed that an anonymous do- nor, who contributed thousands of dollars each year to the parish, was no longer able or willing to help our parish. That news made our Grand Annual Collection more important than ever. In 2014, we raised $30,271. In 2015, we raised $31,426. In 2016, we raised $31,474. And this year, we raised $43,489! That’s an increase of almost 40% over last year! So, to each and every parishioner who gave and gave again to Our Lady’s Grand Annual Collection, please accept my deep and sincere thanks!
At Holy Family Parish, our goal was to raise $75,000 for the Grand Annual Collection. In all honesty, I did not have any real expectation that we would reach our goal. After all, throughout the last fiscal year, we have been asking again and again for donations to the Saint Ann Church Restoration Fund. And so far, because of your generous support, we have raised $221,272.00 to repair the tower and east wall of our beloved church. Facing this towering challenge, it did not seem possible that we could raise an additional $75,000 for the Grand Annual Collection. In fact, because of the restoration project, we did not even begin this year’s Grand Annual Collection until after Easter!
But then, miraculous things happened! Each week, more and more envelopes arrived in our parish office. Some were placed in the offertory basket during Mass. Some arrived by mail. Some were hand delivered by parishioners of all ages. Still, no one seriously believed that we would reach our goal. In an effort to close the gap before the end of the fiscal year, we made a final push and scheduled a second collection for last weekend. That second collection raised more than $8,000! By Wednesday, June 28th, we had raised approximately $74,115! Absolutely amazing!
Upon learning that we were that close to our goal and with just hours before last week’s bulletin was due at the printer, two members of our pastoral team began working to raise $885 so that we could share the good news with our parishioners. They called, emailed, and texted as many people as they could. At first, there was silence. And then, all of a sudden, a parishioner from Gloucester pledged $200. Then a parishioner from Rockport pledged $100. Then another $100 and another and another! Then someone pledged $50! Then someone pledged and hand-delivered a check for $500! By noon, those two members of our pastoral team and some generous parishioners raised more than $2,000! And when the mail was delivered that day, additional contributions arrived so that when all contributions were counted, our Grand Annual Collection raised $77,373 in just three months!
Later this summer, I will share with you a more complete year-end financial report for both Holy Family Parish and Our Lady of Good Voyage Parish. Until then, as a new fiscal year begins, my deepest and heartfelt thanks go to all who contributed to these Grand Annual Collections, to all who help us help others with their gifts of time, talent, and treasure, and to all who pray for our parishes and our parishioners. May God bless all who live, work, and worship in the Catholic Community of Gloucester & Rockport! Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!
Peace and blessings to all,
Reverend James M. Achadinha, Pastor
Catholic Community of Gloucester & Rockport
Knights of Columbus
Tuesday, July 11th
The Knights of Columbus (Council 215) is a fraternal and charitable organization of Catholic men that serves the Catholic Community of Gloucester & Rockport at both Holy Family Parish and Our Lady of Good Voyage Parish. Since 1897, our award-winning council has sponsored countless works of charity on Cape Ann, including annual events like our blood drive, food drive, golf tournament, and the Coats for Kids program; along with our ongoing support for the Saint Vincent de Paul Society and the Holy Family Women’s Guild.
If you have twenty-four hours to volunteer for charity, we can transform that commitment into meaningful results for you, your family, and our communities. The Knights of Columbus (Council 215) meets on the second Tuesday of each month in the Parish Center (located at 74 Pleasant Street in Gloucester). Our next meeting is scheduled for Tuesday, July 11th at 7:00pm. For more information, please visit our website at kofc215.com; or contact us at email@example.com. New members are always welcome!
Holy Family Parish
Annual Crowning Ceremony
Sunday, July 23rd
In anticipation of the Feast of Saint Ann and Saint Joachim, all parishioners, friends, and guests of Holy Family Parish and the Catholic Community of Gloucester & Rockport are invited to join us for the Annual Crowning of Saint Ann and the Blessed Virgin Mary after our 8:15am Mass on Sunday, July 23rd. As a community of faith, let us unite our hearts and voices in prayer for the intercession of our patrons: Saint Ann, pray for us! Saint Joachim, pray for us! For more information about this special annual event, please contact Mary Rubino at 978- 281-0009. Please join us! All are invited! All are welcome!
Youth Faith Formation
Call for Youth Altar Servers
Father Jim is full of energy and excitement, but as the only full-time priest assigned to the Catholic Community of Gloucester & Rockport, he sometimes needs our help! This summer, he is hoping to form a corps of youth altar servers to help him at Mass! All young disciples, ages 8 through 17, are invited to participate on a weekly or monthly basis. Training is available! Being an altar server is a great way to continue learning about the teachings and traditions of the Catholic Church! For more information, please contact Father Jim at firstname.lastname@example.org. Calling young disciples! All are invited! All are welcome!
Youth Faith Formation
Father Jim’s Summer Art Contest
All young disciples, ages 5 through 12, are invited to par- ticipate in Father Jim’s Second Annual Summer Art Contest by creating an original work of art based on the theme of “Our Blessed Mother Mary.” Submissions should be no smaller than 8 by 11 inches and no larger than 18 by 24 inches; created, colored, drawn, or painted by hand; and depicting an image of Our Blessed Mother. All original art projects are due by Sunday, September 3rd and will be judged by Father Jim and a committee of judges! The winning submission will be professionally framed and displayed prominently in our parish offices. For more information about our Second Annual Summer Art Contest for Children, please contact Father Jim at email@example.com. Calling young disciples! All are invited! 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. 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!
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