This Week’s Message
Moment for Grace
A PRAYER FOR MIGRANTS & REFUGEES
God of our wandering ancestors,
long have we known
that your heart is with the refugee;
that you were born into time
in a family of refugees
fleeing violence in their homeland,
who then gathered up their hungry child
and fled into a strange land.
Their cry, your cry, resounds through the ages:
“Will you let me in?”
Give us hearts that break open
when our brothers and sisters
turn to us with that same cry.
Then surely, all these things will follow:
ears will no longer turn deaf to their voices;
eyes will see a moment for grace instead of a threat;
tongues will not be silenced but will instead advocate.
And hands will reach out:
working for peace in their homeland,
working for justice in the lands where they seek safe haven.
Lord, protect all migrants and refugees.
May the find a friend in me
and so make me more worthy
of the refuge that I have found in you.
Glory to the Father, to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit;
as it was in the beginning,
is now, and will be forever. Amen.
A MESSAGE FROM POPE FRANCIS
Dear brothers and sisters,
our response to the challenges
posed by contemporary migration
can be summed up in four words:
welcome, protect, promote, and integrate…
Through them, the Lord calls us to conversion,
to be set free from exclusivity, indifference,
and the throw-away culture.
Through them, the Lord invites us
to fully embrace our Christian life,
and to contribute, each according to his or her vocation,
to the building up of a world
that is more in accord with God’s plan.
Source: Catholic Relief Services
An Evening with Saint Bridget of Sweden
Healing God’s Family & Rebuilding Our Church
Thursday, July 18th
More than eight centuries ago, the Crucified Christ called out to the young man who would become Saint Francis of Assisi: “Go! Rebuild my church which as you can see is falling into ruin!” Francis took the Lord’s command literally and set out to repair small chapels in and around his hometown. Over the years, however, Francis came to understand more fully that his vocation to live the Gospel and share God’s love was vital to rebuilding the Church all around the world.
In this spirit and in appreciation for the crisis facing the Roman Catholic Church in our own time, the Catholic Community of Gloucester & Rockport will gather in commemoration of important feast days and pray for the healing of God’s family and for the courage to rebuild our wounded Church. In addition, we will also beg the saints to pray for us and to guide us in the hard work of discipleship during these difficult times.
All are invited to join us for our next Evening of Prayer for the Healing of God’s Family on Thursday, July 18th in honor of Saint Bridget of Sweden (1303-1373), a wife, mother, mystic, and visionary who founded a religious order that continues to flourish almost seven centuries after its founding. This special evening of prayer will begin at 6:00pm in Our Lady of Good Voyage Church with Evening Prayer and Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament. At 6:45pm, we will pray the Holy Rosary for the healing of God’s family. And at 7:30pm, we will conclude with Night Prayer & Benediction.
During Evening Prayer, Cliff Garvey will offer a reflection on the life and legacy of Saint Bridget of Sweden. We will also pray with the relics of Saint Elizabeth Hesselblad (1870-1957) who renewed the Bridgettine Order. These relics have been known to comfort the afflicted and heal the sick. We hope and pray that you and your family will be able to join us for all or even just part of this special evening of prayer, reflection, and devotion. For more information, please contact Cliff at firstname.lastname@example.org. Please join us! Spread the word! All are invited! All are welcome!
Sacramental Preparation for Adults
Begins This Fall!
“The Way” was the among the earliest names for followers of the Risen Christ. The Way also appears as a biblical reference to the earliest Christian communities in the Acts of the Apostles. In addition, tradition teaches that both before and after his conversion, 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 Jesus Christ. 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 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 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”, an adult faith formation program that will meet on Sunday mornings after our 8:15am Mass beginning on October 13th in Saint Ann House of Prayer. The Way (sometimes 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). Other parishioners who have received the Sacraments are also welcome to join us!
Our group will meet every other week 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 email@example.com. Please join us! Spread the word! All are invited! All are welcome!
Special Message of Thanks
The Way for Kids
The Catholic Community of Gloucester & Rockport wishes to congratulate the following young disciples from both Holy Family Parish and Our Lady of Good Voyage Parish who successfully completed “The Way for Kids” and received their First Holy Communion on the Solemnity of the Body & Blood of Christ: Madelyn Brown, Julianna Curcuru, Henry Goulart, Michael Grossi, Riley McKinnon, Hailey Powers, and Gabriel Spagnol.
During the past six weeks, in this special program for older children who did not receive First Holy Communion in the second grade, these seven children prayed, studied, and grew together in prayer, fellowship, and service. In addition, they learned together that disciples of all ages are called to live the Gospel, share God’s love and mercy, and rebuild the Church. They were well-prepared to receive the Body & Blood of Christ; and they are now ready to become faith-filled fellow parishioners!
These young disciples wish to thank their parents, families, and friends for their love, prayers, and support. In particular, they wish to express their appreciation to those who helped them prepare for their First Holy Communion: Fernanda Brown, Betsy Works, and myself. Finally, please pray for all of our young fellow parishioners, their parents, and families so that they will continue to grow in faith, hope, and love; and that they will continue to join us for Mass on a regular basis. Thank you for your prayers and support! Peace and blessings to all! — Father Jim
Electronic Giving Made 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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