Our Pastor’s Message
Magnets for Miracles
By Father Jim
Last winter, I visited a country store in a small town in Maine. It is one of those stores that sells a little bit of everything: clothing, food, hardware, and even wedding gowns. It also carries a great selection of refrigerator magnets and one of them caught my eye. It read: “A grateful heart is a magnet for miracles.” When I saw the magnet, I didn’t buy it but its message remained with me and provided some food for thought as winter faded into spring. Nevertheless, given that life is busy and time passes, the message seemed to pass from memory until just recently.
Each year, the Catholic Community of Gloucester & Rockport asks all parishioners 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 they are vitally important to the financial stability of both parishes. This year, our goal was to raise $45,000 at Our Lady of Good Voyage Parish and $75,000 at Holy Family Parish. These goals were lofty, but necessary to ensure that our bills could be paid and our budgets balanced in each parish.
As the end of the fiscal year approached, it appeared that we might not reach our goals in either parish. It wasn’t just that parishioners seemed slow or reluctant to give. It was also that for some reason, our pastoral team and finance councils (myself included) seemed reluctant to ask for donations this year. Finally, I was encouraged to ask you again to dig deeply and to give generously to the Grand Annual Collections. And suddenly, amazing things began to happen! Donation envelopes began arriving! Some were posted by mail. Some were placed in the collection baskets. Some were hand delivered. Some were even personally handed to members our pastoral team before and after weekend Masses.
In all honesty, your generosity was simply overwhelming and miraculous! At the close of business on June 30th, which marked the end of the fiscal year, we raised $46,369 at Our Lady of Good Voyage Parish and $77,188 at Holy Family Parish. For the first time in our four-year history as the Catholic Community of Gloucester & Rockport, both of our parishes reached and surpassed their goals! And although it will still take several weeks to reconcile all of our accounts, it seems safe to say that for the first time in our four-year history, both parishes should have balanced budgets!
Credit for this good news belongs to every parishioner who gives their time, talent, and treasure to make our parishes spirit-filled, vibrant, and welcoming communities of prayer, fellowship, and service. Credit for this good news belongs to everyone who prays for our parishes, our pastoral team, and our fellow parishioners. Credit for this good news belongs to everyone who gave a bunch and to every person who could afford to give just a buck or two. Most of all, credit belongs to the Holy Spirit who inspires us and gives us the courage to live the Gospel, share God’s love, and rebuild the Church.
A grateful heart is a magnet for miracles! It seems strange to take spiritual guidance from a refrigerator magnet. But at this point, it seems more strange not to do so, because my heart is so grateful to you and for you and for so many small miracles of faith, hope, and love that surround us each and every day. Let us pray together in thanksgiving for our blessings and for our challenges. Let us pray together in thanksgiving for each other. And let us pray that each one of us, in our own way, may have grateful hearts that are mag- nets for miracles in our homes, in our workplaces, in our communities, in our country, and in our troubled world! Peace and blessings to all!
Reverend James M. Achadinha, Pastor
Catholic Community of Gloucester & Rockport
Call to Prayer
A Prayer for Our Nation
By Thomas Jefferson
who has given us this good land
for our heritage,
we humbly beseech you
that we may always prove ourselves
a people mindful of your favor
and glad to do your will.
Bless our land
with honorable ministry,
sound learning, and pure manners.
Save us from violence, discord, and confusion,
from pride and arrogance,
and from every evil way.
Defend our liberties,
and fashion into one united people,
the multitude brought here
out of many kindreds and tongues.
Endow with your spirit of wisdom
those whom in your name
we entrust the authority of government,
so that there may be justice and peace at home,
and that through obedience to your law,
we may show forth your praise
among the nations of the earth.
In time of prosperity,
fill our hearts with thankfulness,
and in the day of trouble,
suffer not our trust in you to fail;
all of which we ask through Jesus Christ, our Lord.
Pastor’s Note: Thomas Jefferson (1743-1826) was author of the Declaration of Independence and the Virginia Statute for Religious Freedom. He was Founder of the University of Virginia, Secretary of State, and President of the United States. He was a visionary philosopher and statesman. And sadly, he also was an owner of slaves. In many ways, Thomas Jefferson embodies both the original sin and eternal promise of the United States of America. In the Declaration of Independence, Jefferson wrote: “We hold these truths to be self-evident that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights, that among these are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.” Scholars agree that this bold proposition of freedom and equality serves as the civic creed of our nation. This weekend and every weekend, let us pray for our country and for its people! May God bless America! Peace and blessings to all! — Father Jim
Knights of Columbus
Tuesday, July 10th
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 throughout 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 this year, 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 every month in our parish offices (located at 74 Pleasant Street in Gloucester). Our next meeting is scheduled for Tuesday, July 10th at 7:00pm. For more information about the Knights and their good work in our parishes, please contact us at email@example.com. Please join us! New members are always welcome!
Holy Family Parish
Annual Crowning Ceremony
Sunday, July 29th
In celebration of the Feast of Saint Ann and Saint Joachim (July 26th), 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 29th. As a community united in prayer, fellowship, and service, 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, please contact Mary Rubino at 978-281-0009. Please join us! All are invited! All are welcome!
Safe & Easy Electronic Giving
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 visit the links below; choose the appropriate parish link; and click “make a donation.” All parishioners are encouraged to prayerfully consider supporting our parishes by giving electronically! It is a great way to support your parish especially when you and your family are away! For more information about electronic giving in the Catholic Community of Gloucester & Rockport, please contact Melissa Unis at firstname.lastname@example.org. Thank you for your generous and ongoing support of both Holy Family Parish and Our Lady of Good Voyage Parish!
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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