Our Pastor’s Message
Loaves & Fishes
By Father Jim
In this weekend’s gospel, we find Jesus, his disciples, and a large crowd in a deserted place. The crowd has come to hear Jesus preach about God’s love and mercy. But the day is long, probably hot and dry, and everyone is far from home. Out of concern for the people, the disciples ask Jesus to stop preaching so that everyone can somehow find food and lodging. In response, Jesus is both direct and plain-spoken. He simply tells the disciples to feed the people. But the disciples fret because they do not have enough food for everyone. Five loaves of bread and two fishes are surely not enough to feed five thousand people. They worry that the hungry crowd will grow angry and unruly. They fear that the restless crowd might turn on them.
Jesus then takes charge. He tells the disciples to organize the crowd. He tells them to sit down. He probably tells them to be silent. He blesses the seemingly meager supply of food. And he performs the miracle that multiplies the loaves and fishes into a meal that satisfies everyone. In fact, there are even leftovers for later. The disciples have already seen Jesus exorcise demons, heal the sick, and raise the dead. Now this latest miracle! At the heart of this great public spectacle, however, are deep and profound messages about discipleship and the mission of the church. First, we hear Jesus call his disciples to share their resources, however limited, with others. In this case, Jesus calls them to share with a crowd which undoubtedly included many strangers; people they did not know and might not ever see again. More than two thousand years later, Jesus calls us to share whatever we can, without counting the cost, with those in need.
In our own parishes, the men and women of the Saint Vincent de Paul Society volunteer their time, talent, and resources to serve the poor, the hungry, and the marginalized in our own neighborhoods here on Cape Ann. This service is often difficult and unappreciated. It takes great faith and sometimes great courage to reach out and serve those who are less fortunate than ourselves. The Saint Vincent de Paul Society deserves our ongoing support. They always appreciate our generosity. They always put it to good use. And they always welcome new members and volunteers. Likewise, the men and women of the Legion of Mary share in the Lord’s miraculous ministry on a daily basis. They visit the disabled, the elderly, the sick, and the forgotten in their homes, hospital rooms, and nursing care facilities. This service is sometimes fraught with sadness and suffering. And yet for almost one hundred years, the Legion of Mary has soldiered on: always faithful, always present, and always ready to welcome new members with open arms.
During these selfish times, the idea of service is sometimes overlooked. But we see that when Jesus works the miracle of the loaves and fishes, he calls the disciples to join in it by serving the meal to the assembled crowd. As disciples, we can also join in the Lord’s ministry of love, mercy, and hospitality. When we pray for others, forgive a friend, make peace in our families, or simply offer a kind word to someone we meet downtown, we share in the miraculous multiplication of loaves and fishes that manifests itself in our abiding love for Jesus and our love for others. This week, I invite you to spend a few minutes praying with the miracle of the loaves and fishes. Imagine what it must have been like to be a disciple. Imagine what it must have been like to partake in that amazing meal. I also invite you to pray about how you might share your gifts and resources with our parish communities; how you might serve as a disciple of Christ in our own time in your own way. How does Jesus call you to share? How does Jesus call you to serve? How does Jesus call you to share in the miracle of loaves and fishes?
Reverend James M. Achadinha, Pastor
Catholic Community of Gloucester & Rockport
Catholic Kids Camp
The Holy Land: Footsteps of Jesus
June 25th through June 28th
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 Holy Land: Footsteps of Jesus” from Tuesday, June25th through Friday, June 28th from 8:00am until 12:00pm in Our Lady of Good Voyage Church. During this exciting week of prayer, fun, and fellowship, our children will learn about the places where Jesus walked in the Holy Land through active and engaged participation in games, music, skits, videos, and craft projects. Here’s our schedule for the week:
- Day I: Tuesday, June 25th Jesus in Nazareth
- Day II: Wednesday, June 26th Jesus at the Sea of Galilee
- Day III: Thursday, June 27th Jesus on the Mountains
- Day IV: Friday, June 28th Jesus in Jerusalem
Each day of our first Catholic Kids Camp of the summer season will begin with Mass at 8:00am in Our Lady of Good Voyage Church. All parents, grandparents, and godparents are invited and encouraged to join us! After Mass, Betsy Works and a team of dedicated volunteers will lead the children to Our Lady’s School 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 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 children (ages 12 and up) are welcome to join us as volunteers! Your help will be much appreciated! For more information this special youth faith formation program, please contact Betsy Works at firstname.lastname@example.org. Please join us! Spread the word! Bring a friend! All are invited! All are welcome!
The Assisi Project
Saturday Morning with Saint Francis
Saturday, June 29th
Founded in 2007 by Father Jim and Cliff Garvey after their first pilgrimage to Assisi and Rome, the Assisi Project is a Fellowship of Franciscans in Spirit with friends and followers in the United States, Canada, Africa, and Europe. Our mission is to help adults of all ages more faithfully live the Gospel of Christ and grow closer to the God’s Holy Church through the inspiration and intercession of Saint Francis, Saint Clare, and all of the Franciscan saints.
The Assisi Project meets on the last Saturday of every month in Our Lady of Good Voyage Church for Mass, formation, fellowship, and faith sharing. Our next “Saturday Morning with Saint Francis” is scheduled for June 29th beginning at 8:00am. This month, we will continue our study and discussion of the Franciscan Saints. In particular, we will focus on Saint Anthony of Padua, patron of lost things and lost souls. For more information about the Assisi Project and its good work in our parishes, please contact Cliff at email@example.com. Please join us! All are invited! All are welcome!
Saint Peter’s Fiesta Mass
Welcome Bishop O’Connell
Sunday, June 30th
The 92nd Annual Saint Peter’s Fiesta runs from Wednes-day, June 26th through Sunday, June 30th. On that Sunday, the Catholic Community of Gloucester & Rockport will celebrate Masses according to this schedule:
- Our Lady of Good Voyage Church at 7:00am
- Saint Ann Church at 8:15am
- Saint Joachim Church at 10:00am
- Saint Peter Park Outdoor Mass at 10:00am
- Our Lady of Good Voyage Church at 11:45am
This year, we welcome the Most Reverend Mark O’Connell, Auxiliary Bishop of Boston, as our special guest celebrant and homilist. Please join us! Spread the word! Bring your family and friends! 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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