This Week’s Message
Standing with the Dreamers
The Lord watches over the strangers; he upholds the orphan and the widow, but the way of the wicked he brings to ruin (Psalm 146:9).
Since 2012, the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) has provided more than 800,000 young adults with reprieve from deportation and temporary authorization to work in the United States. This program does not provide any legal status or government bene- fits to these young adults, only chance to live and work openly and honestly across our great country. The so-called “Dreamers” are young adults who were brought illegally into our country as children by their parents, but have known no other real home other than the United States. In most cases, the Dreamers are young men and women who want nothing more than to work hard and play by the rules, to enjoy the blessings of liberty that we so often take for granted, and to achieve a small share in the American Dream.
Earlier this week, despite direct and heartfelt appeals from a bipartisan coalition of congressional leaders and a multi-denominational coalition of faith leaders, the Trump Administration announced the cancellation of the DACA program in just six months. In response, Cardinal Daniel DiNardo of Galveston-Houston, President of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) and Archbishop José Gomez of Los Angeles, Vice-President, and other bishops from across the country, issued a strong denunciation of the termination of the DACA program and the looming threat of deportation for these young people and their families. The full text of the DiNardo-Gomez statement follows:
‘The cancellation of the DACA program is reprehensible. It causes unnecessary fear for DACA youth and their families. These youth entered the United States as minors and often know America as their only home. The Catholic Church has long watched with pride and admiration as DACA youth live out their daily lives with hope and a determination to flourish and contribute to society: continuing to work and provide for their families, continuing to serve in the military, and continuing to receive an education. Now, after months of anxiety and fear about their futures, these brave young people face deportation. This decision is unacceptable and does not reflect who we are as Americans.
The Church has recognized and proclaimed the need to welcome young people: “Whoever welcomes one of these children in my name welcomes me; and whoever welcomes me does not welcome me but the one who sent me (Mark 9:37).” Today, our nation has done the opposite of how scripture calls us to respond. It is a step back from the progress that we need to make as a country. Today’s actions represent a heartbreaking moment in our history that shows the absence of mercy and good will, and a short-sighted vision for the future. DACA youth are woven into the fabric of our country and our Church, and are, by every social and human measure, American youth.
We strongly urge Congress to act and immediately resume work toward a legislative solution. We pledge our support to work on finding an expeditious means of protection for the DACA youth. As people of faith, we say to DACA youth: regardless of your immigration status, you are children of God and you are welcome in the Catholic Church. The Catholic Church supports you and will advocate for you.’
Cardinal Daniel DiNardo, Archbishop of Galveston-Houston
Archbishop Jose Gomez, Archbishop of Los Angeles
Youth Faith Formation
Youth Choir & Music Ministry
Begins September 12th!
The Catholic Community of Gloucester & Rockport’s Youth Choir & Music Ministry will resume their weekly rehearsals this Tuesday, September 12th at 5:00pm in Saint Ann Church. Each weekend, the youth choir sings at one of our three churches: Saint Ann Church, Saint Joachim Church, or Our Lady of Good Voyage Church. The Youth Choir & Music Ministry welcomes new members, ranging in age from kindergarten through high school. Young musicians are also welcome to join us! Be- ing a part of this ministry is a great way to learn about the musical traditions of the Catholic Church, make new friends, and participate more fully in the life of our parishes! For more information, please contact Patty Natti at email@example.com. Please join us! All are invited! All are welcome!
Sacramental Preparation for Adults
Begins October 8th
I am the way, the truth, and the life (John 14:6).
The “Way” was among the earliest names for followers of the Risen Christ. The Way appears as a scriptural reference to the earliest Christian communities in the Acts of the Apostles. In addition, both before and after his conversion, tradition holds that Saint Paul referred to the disciples of Christ as part of the “Way.” More than two thousand years later, Catholic Christians are still part of the Way of Christ Jesus. But as we all know, a life of discipleship is not a hobby or pastime. It is a vocation, a way of life that lays claim to our whole heart, mind, and strength. As disciples, our lives should be focused on and inspired by our faith in Jesus Christ, who is our merciful redeemer, friend, and brother. And as disciples, we are called to reach out to those who need our help in growing closer to Christ and the Catholic Church.
If you are an adult (age 18 and over) and have not received all of the Sacraments of Initiation in the Roman Catholic Church (Baptism, Eucharist, and Confirmation), then please consider joining “The Way”, a new adult faith formation program which will meet twice each month on Sunday mornings after our 8:15am Mass beginning on October 8th in Saint Ann House of Prayer. The Way (typically called the Rite of Christian Initiation for Adults) is a seven month program that prepares adults to be received into the Catholic Church at the Easter Vigil. As part of this same program, we will prepare adults for the Sacrament of Confirmation (to be received at either the Easter Vigil or at a regional archdiocesan celebration).
Our group will meet bi-weekly for fellowship, formation, and faith sharing. As a community of disciples, we will learn together about the basic beliefs, teachings, and traditions of the Church; and we will explore the methods of prayer and spirituality that have brought centuries of believers closer to Christ Jesus and to the Church. In addition, we will talk openly and honestly about the challenges of living an authentic life of faith, hope, and love in the modern world. If you would like to learn more about this journey of faith and become part of a unique fellowship in preparation for the sacraments of God’s Church, then please contact Cliff Garvey at firstname.lastname@example.org. Please join us! All are welcome!
Youth Faith Formation
Grade 2 Sacramental Preparation
Begins October 13th
The Catholic Community of Gloucester & Rockport offers a creative and innovative way for children to prepare for the Sacraments of Penance & Reconciliation (Confession) and First Holy Communion. Our program is designed to prepare both children and their parents for these sacraments; to encourage lifelong relationships with Jesus Christ and the Catholic Church; and to help families grow together in prayer, fellowship, and service. Our program is simple and family-friendly! First, our top priority is to invite all families to attend of one our seven weekend Masses. Second, all second grade children and their parents, grandparents, and/or guardians are asked to attend two 90 minute workshops during the fall season and three 90 minute workshops during the winter-spring season. Each of these “Faith & Family Workshops” is offered at different times so that each family can choose which option works best for them.
Our sacramental preparation program for second graders and their families begins during the weekend of October 13th-October 14th. A calendar of events and registration form are available from our office or by clicking on the link below. Registration forms can be returned by mail; hand-delivered to our parish offices (which are located at 74 Pleasant Street in Gloucester); or completed at our walk-in registration day on Saturday, September 23rd from 9:00am until 11:00am in Our Lady of Good Voyage Hall (which is located 142 Prospect Street in Gloucester). If you have questions or need assistance with youth faith formation, please contact Betsy Works at email@example.com. Please join us! All are invited! All are welcome!
Fall Day of Prayer
Learning to Love with Saint Francis
Saturday, September 30th
Nights are growing cooler. Gardens are fading. Leaves are beginning to show a hint of fall color. One season ends, another begins. Autumn is a great time to refresh and renew our spir- itual lives. This year, in celebration of the Assisi Project’s 10th Anniversary (2007-2017), Father Jim and Cliff Garvey are offering a series of adult faith formation programs designed to help us better understand the life and legacy of Saint Francis of Assisi, his influence on Pope Francis and the Catholic Church, and the timeless traditions of Franciscan prayer and spirituality.
In this spirit, all parishioners, friends, and guests of the Catholic Community of Gloucester & Rockport are invited to join Father Jim, Cliff, and the Assisi Project for a Fall Day of Prayer & Reflection: “Learning to Love with Saint Francis of Assisi” on Saturday, September 30th in Saint Anthony Chapel. During this four-hour mini-retreat, we will explore what Saint Francis of Assisi, who lived eight centuries ago, can teach contemporary Christians like us how to love God and love others in an increasingly troubled world. This special morning of prayer and reflection will proceed according to the following schedule:
9:00am Morning Prayer & Reflection
10:00am Eucharistic Adoration & Rosary
11:00am Daytime Prayer & Reflection
12:00pm Angelus & Closing Prayers
Throughout the morning, there will be breaks, times for silent prayer, and periods for faith sharing and fellowship. Coffee, tea, and bottled water will be served. After our closing pray- ers, all are invited to remain for a picnic lunch. During Mass, a free-will donation will be taken in support of our adult faith formation ministry. If you would like to join us for this special faith formation program for adults, please contact Cliff Garvey at firstname.lastname@example.org. It is important to register for this program in advance so that we can plan adequately for food and drink. Please join us! All are invited! All are welcome!
The Assisi Project
Founded in 2007 by Father Jim and Cliff Garvey, the Assi- si Project is a fellowship of “Franciscans in Spirit” that seeks to live the Gospel of Christ through the inspiration and intercession of Saint Francis of Assisi. Our mission is to serve the Church and to give witness to the Good News through formation and prayer, pilgrimage and retreat, and educating others about the Franciscan way of life. Members of the Assisi Project, on four continents all around the world, ranging in age from 15 to 92, pray for those who ask for our prayers. If you would like us to pray for you or your special intention or if you would like more information about the Assisi Project and its good work in our parishes, please contact Cliff at email@example.com. New members are always welcome! Please join us! May the Lord give you peace, now and always!
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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