Our Pastor’s Message
Our Fourth Anniversary
By Father Jim
This weekend, the Catholic Church returns to Ordinary Time, the Catholic Community of Gloucester & Rockport celebrates its fourth anniversary, and Christ confronts his critics and embraces his family in faith. In this weekend’s gospel, Jesus teaches us that we cannot accomplish good things in bad ways. Ends do not justify means. Evil will always produce evil. Jesus also announces that all of us — no matter who we are, what we’ve done, or where we’re from — are his family when we choose goodness over evil. Jesus tells us that we become God’s children when we believe in him; when we love God and love others; and when we build up his church by doing good in our homes, workplaces, and communities.
During our four years together, our parish communities have defied expectations. We have grown in faith, hope, and love. We have grown closer in prayer, fellowship, and service. We have worked hard. We have pinched pennies. We have saved and sacrificed. We have given our time, talent, and treasure — again and again — without complaint and without counting the cost. We began the hard but necessary work of literally rebuilding the Church in our corner of the world. We have made much progress in repairing and restoring our churches and church buildings. Much more must be done, but we can do it. We can do it together. Always together.
During these past four years, we prayed together, mourned together, laughed together, and labored long hours together in the Lord’s service. We reimagined how we share the faith with our children and grandchildren. We inspired countless adults to learn more, share more, and pray more. We celebrated 182 weddings, 225 confirmations, 286 first holy communions, 314 baptisms, and 521 funerals. We celebrated 1,456 weekend Masses and 1,248 weekday Masses. The work is hard. But we can still do it. Together. Always together.
People often ask: How do you manage? Do you ever sleep? Truth be told, being the only full-time priest for the foreseeable future is not easy. Sometimes I get frustrated. Sometimes I get tired. Sometimes I get sad. I miss my family and friends. I miss my nieces and nephew more than they know. Sometimes (just sometimes), I even miss my brother and sister. I love them both more than they think. Being a priest and pastor can be hard. But it is good. So very good. Four years ago, God blessed me with a faithful, strong, and somewhat unruly flock. Your generosity and support sustain me. Your kindness and love lift me up. Your prayers and trust inspire me to look forward to each new day. God also blessed me with a gifted, dedicated, and somewhat unruly pastoral team. Without them, I could not do what I do. Without them, we could not do what we do. But come what may, we are blessed to do it together. Always together.
During our four years together, among the hardest things asked of me was to celebrate the funeral of my friend, Deacon Ray Wellbank. Six months later, Deacon Ray’s passing is still keenly felt by me and by every member of our pastoral team. We loved him. We respected him. We miss him every single day. Ray’s death and the deaths of other friends and loved ones test our faith, our spirits, and our ability to carry on. But we forge ahead together. Always together.
During our four years together, I have made more than my fair share of mistakes. For these mistakes and for those yet to come, I offer a most sincere apology. In my heart, I know that you deserve a better pastor. I pray that he will come up the line with shorter homilies, better ideas, and richer friends. Until that day comes, let us continue our work together, always together, as humble servants in the vineyard of the Lord. Let us live the Gospel, share God’s love, and rebuildthe Church — together. Always together. May God bless you and your family. May God bless all who live, work, and worship in the Catholic Community of Gloucester & Rockport. Brothers and sisters, thank you so much! Happy Anniversary!
Reverend James M. Achadinha, Pastor
Catholic Community of Gloucester & Rockport
Note: This week’s banner art is entitled “Cristo” and was painted by Massimo Cruciani of Assisi, Italy. Massimo’s paintings on glass are famous throughout the world and were praised by Saint John Paul II. This painting was purchased as a gift for Father Jim by family, friends, and pastoral team members in celebration of his birthday, his fourth anniversary as our pastor, and his fifteenth anniversary as a priest.
Feast of Saint Anthony
Mass & Prayer at Saint Anthony Chapel
Wednesday, June 13th
Saint Anthony is the patron of lost things and lost souls, the patron of fishermen and mariners, and the patron of the poor and hungry. On Wednesday, June 13th, all are invited to celebrate the Feast of Saint Anthony at Saint Anthony Chapel beginning with Mass at 8:00am, followed by ten hours of silent prayer and adoration of the Blessed Sacrament. At 3:00pm, we will pray the Rosary for the intentions of Pope Francis. At 6:30pm, our vigil will conclude with Evening Prayer and Benediction. For more information, please contact Father Jim at firstname.lastname@example.org. Please join us! All are invited! All are welcome! Saint Anthony, pray for us!
Begins Saturday, June 16th
CONVERSATIONS ABOUT PRIESTHOOD IN THE 21ST CENTURY
This weekend, Father Jim celebrates his fifteenth anniversary as a priest. And next month, he will celebrate his fourth anniversary as pastor of the Catholic Community of Gloucester & Rockport. These blessed and happy occasions seem like a great time to come together, pray, and reflect on the gift of the priesthood in our lives. In this spirit and as part of our Year for Vocations, all are invited to join Father Jim and Cliff Garvey for a series of conversations about the priesthood in the twenty-first century.
On three consecutive Saturday evenings (June 16th, June 23rd, and June 30th) at 7:00pm in Our Lady of Good Voyage Church, we will gather to pray and reflect with our pastor on the blessings and challenges of priesthood during a time of transition and potentially dramatic change in the Roman Catholic Church. We will also read and discuss selectionsfrom Cardinal Timothy Dolan’s book, “Called To Be Holy.” Each of our evenings together will begin with Evening Prayer from the Liturgy of the Hours, followed by a brief reflection and a period of conversation and faith sharing. Our gatherings will conclude promptly with Night Prayer at 8:30pm.
All parishioners are invited to join us for this special program! Books will be provided at our first meeting. A donation of $25 per person is requested from those who can afford it, along with a sincere commitment to read and come prepared to ask constructive questions, share their faith experiences, and offer personal spiritual insights. If you are interested in joining us for this special series of conversations about the priesthood in the new millennium, please contact Cliff at email@example.com. Please join us! All are invited! All are welcome!
Pope Francis once said: “Let us pray for all good and faithful priests who dedicate themselves to their people with generosity and unknown sacrifices.” This weekend and always, let us pause, pray, and reflect on the goodness and generosity of our priests. Let us pray especially for Father Jim, Father Alves, and Father Gariboldi so that the Lord may bless them, comfort them, and strengthen them. Let us also pray for an increase in vocations to the priesthood and an increase in all vocations that serve God’s Church with faith, hope, and love. May God bless our pope, our pastor, and all of our priests!
Catholic Kids Camp
The Beatitudes of Jesus
Begins Tuesday, June 26th
The Catholic Community of Gloucester & Rockport is pleased to announce that all children (ages 5 through 11) are invited to participate in our next Catholic Kids Camp:“The Beatitudes of Jesus” from Tuesday, June 26th through Friday, June 29th from 8:00am until 12:00pm in Our Lady of Good Voyage Church. During this exciting week of prayer and fellowship, our children will learn about Jesus and the Sermon on the Mount through active and engaged participation in games, music, skits, andcraft projects. Here’s our schedule for the week:
Day I: Tuesday, June 26th
Blessed Are the Poor & Those Who Mourn
Day II: Wednesday, June 27th
Blessed Are Those Who Hunger for Justice
Day III: Thursday, June 28th
Blessed Are the Merciful & Pure of Heart
Day IV: Friday, June 29th
Blessed Are the Peacemakers & Persecuted
Each day of our Catholic Kids Camp will begin with Mass at 8:00am in Our Lady of Good Voyage Church. All parents, grandparents, and guardians are invited and encouraged to join us! After Mass, Betsy Works and a team of dedicated volunteers will lead the children to Our Lady’sSchool for a faith-filled and fun-filled morning of activities, hands-on learning, and good times with friends both old and new! Catholic Kids Camp is a fun, exciting, and educational program that your children and grandchildren will surely love!
The tuition for this innovative youth faith formation program is just $30 per child for the entire week! Scholarships are available for those families who cannot afford tuition. Also, adults and older children (ages 12 and up) are welcome to join us as volunteers and will be most appreciated! For more information about our next Catholic Kids Camp, please contact Betsy Works at firstname.lastname@example.org. Please join us! All are invited! All are welcome!
Grand Annual Collections
As we enter the final month of the fiscal year, all parishioners are encouraged to prayerfully consider giving to the Grand Annual Collection in either Holy Family Parish or Our Lady of Good Voyage Parish. These fundraising campaigns are essential components of our parish budgets and are vitally important to the financial stability of both parishes. Donation envelopes are available from our parish offices and at the entrances of our churches. For more information about our Grand Annual Collections in the Catholic Community of Gloucester & Rockport, please see Father Jim or contact him at email@example.com. Thank you for your generous support of Holy Family Parish and Our Lady of Good Voyage Parish! Peace and blessings to all! — Father Jim
Electronic Giving Is Safe & Easy!
Available at Both Parishes!
Electronic giving is available at both Holy Family Parish and Our Lady of Good Voyage Parish. It is easy, simple, and safe to make online donations to your home parish using a credit card, debit card, or electronic check. Donations can be made on a one-time-only or ongoing basis. And it takes just a few minutes to set up a secure personal account. Just choose the appropriate link below and click “Make a Donation.” Please prayerfully consider supporting your parish by giving electronically! For more information about electronic giving in the Catholic Community of Gloucester & Rockport, please contact Father Jim at firstname.lastname@example.org. Thank you for your generous and ongoing support!
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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