This Week’s Message
How Are We Called?

By Kathleen M. Basi

Since the moment Pope Francis first appeared on the balcony at Saint Peter’s Basilica, he has been engaging the world. He energizes us, and at the same time, he challenges us to actively participate in our faith. Most of us would rather practice our faith within the safety of a little box, where the Christian call is as clear-cut as praying the rosary, lighting a candle, and attending Sunday Mass. Pope Francis asks us to move beyond the walls of the Church and be true witnesses to Christ in the world.

Like many faithful people, I always thought most issues had simple answers. However, after having a child with a disability, I realized that when the Christian call intersects with the real world, things become more complex — life isn’t so simple.

Consider the pro-life cause, perhaps the most clear-cut issue imaginable. It is not enough to believe that children with disabilities have a right to be born. Their needs impose a heavy financial burden on their families: therapies, surgeries, orthotics, and so on. We have a moral obligation to support life at all stages, even when it requires society’s intervention that runs counter to ideals about self-sufficiency. Pope Francis has called us to confront complex questions and seek thorough answers. Using this process, how can we address some of the questions we face?

How am I called to respond to bitter conflicts within my extended family? How am I called to interact with the person who delights in goading me? How am I called to love the family member who is gay or lesbian? How am I called to help the homeless person at the corner? How am I called to interact with the person in a wheelchair whose speech is hard to understand? How am I called to alleviate the desperation that leads a woman to choose abortion? How am I called to honor human dignity, not only of crime victims, but of those who perpetrate crimes?

As followers of Christ, we will always find ourselves being called upon to respond to situations that may not be as clear-cut as they appear on the surface. Although the path may be demanding, we have the support of the Church and Christ as an example of how to do the hard work. Pope Francis has called us to labor together. Faith grows only when it is stretched. A call of faith is not a static request. To follow Christ means to get up, pick up your cross, and act. True discipleship, although difficult, is worthwhile because it draws us closer to the heart of Christ, the source of our calling.

About the Author: Kathleen M. Basi is a composer, musician, essayist, and disability rights activist. She is also a wife and mother of four children, one of whom lives with Down Syndrome. Kathleen is a regular contributor to Bringing Home the Word, an e-newsletter that features suggestions for prayer and reflection at home. A new issue is posted every weekend at the link below.

CCGR Weekly Newsletter (7-3-22)
Bringing Home the Word (7-3-22)
The Kids Bulletin (7-3-22)


Call to Prayer
A Prayer for Living

By Cameron Bellm

When our lofty words of love
have been emptied of their meaning,
when our borders and computer screens
have erected impenetrable walls,
when our minds are so quick
to conflate ‘other’ with ‘enemy,’
how will we find our common humanity?

It is never too late
to make an earnest and tender start.
May we remove from our pockets
the stones we intended to throw a
nd cement them together
to build a home that welcomes all.

May we repent of our indifference
and move into genuine encounter.
Instead of drawing battle lines,
may we draw up our chairs
to a communal table,
where we can feast in the knowledge
of our shared dignity.

May God grant us the holy vision
to see in every human being a sacred mystery,
and may we love each mystery
not abstractly, but concretely.
Just as Thomas touched the wounds of Jesus,
may we be unafraid to touch the wounds
of our suffering neighbor.

May we lay down our arms
and offer our outstretched hands,
until there is no ‘them’ but only ‘us,’
until we are, at last,
sisters and brothers, all. Amen.

About the Author: After earning a PhD in Russian Literature from the University of California Berkley in 2011, Cameron Bellm traded the academic life for the contemplative life. Inspired by Ignatian Spirituality and Catholic Social Teaching, Cameron wrote Prayer for a Pandemic which went viral online during the early days of COVID-19. She is also the author of an e-book called A Consoling Presence: Prayers for a Time of Pandemic. Cameron Bellm lives in Seattle with her husband and two children. The prayer above was inspired by Pope Franicis and his encyclical, Fratelli Tutti.

Learn More: Cameron Bellm: Catholic Writer & Speaker


Independence Day
God Bless America

On the Golden Rule
By Pope Francis

Let us remember the Golden Rule:
‘Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.’
This rule points us in a clear direction.
Let us treat others
with the same passion and compassion
with which we wish to be treated.
Let us seek for others
the same possibilities that we seek for ourselves.
Let us help others to grow,
as we would like to be helped ourselves.
In a word, if we want security,
let us give security.
If we want life, let us give life.
If we want opportunities,
let us provide opportunities.
The yardstick we use for others
will be the yardstick that time will use for us.
The Golden Rule also reminds us
of our responsibility to protect and defend human life
at every stage of its development.

For Our Country
A Prayer by Woodrow Wilson

Almighty God,
ruler of all the peoples of the earth,
forgive our shortcomings as a nation,
purify our hearts to see and love the truth,
give wisdom to our leaders,
and steadfastness to our people,
and bring us at last to that fair city of peace
whose foundations are mercy,
justice, and goodwill,
of which you are the designer and builder,
through your Son, Jesus Christ, our Lord. Amen.

Watch: Pope Francis Address to U.S. Congress (9-24-15)


Sacrament of Baptism
God Bless Our Children

The Sacrament of Baptism is the first of the three Sacraments of Initiation in the Roman Catholic Church. The two others are Eucharist and Confirmation. According to the Catechism of the Catholic Church: “Holy Baptism is the basis of the whole Christian life, the gateway to life in the Spirit, and the door which gives access to the other sacraments. Through Baptism, we are freed from sin and reborn as children of God; we become members of Christ, are incorporated into the Church and made sharers in her mission (CCC 1213).” During the month of June, Father Jim has baptized and blessed the following children with holy water in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit:

Olivia Maria Almon
Jack Kyle Brennan
Paul Henry Brennan
Devin James Conrad
Natalia Ann Decoste
Scarlett Joy Focht
Lucas Michael Mitchell
Eve Mackenzie Morrissey
Lola Victoria Morrissey
Vittorio Angelo Sunderland
Jolene Williard

In the Catholic Community of Gloucester & Rockport, the Sacrament of Baptism is celebrated during any Sunday Mass at 10:00am in Saint Joachim Church; on the second Saturday of the month at 11:30am in Saint Ann Church; and on the third Saturday of the month at 11:30am in Our Lady of Good Voyage Church. If you would like to schedule your child’s baptism in either Holy Family Parish or Our Lady of Good Voyage Parish, please contact Sheila McCarthy-Durkin at smccarthy@ccgronline.com. May God bless our newly baptized young disciples and their families!

Learn More: Sacrament of Baptism (Short Video)


Saint Vincent de Paul Society
All New Clothes Closet
Second & Fourth Saturdays

After many months of hard work and renovations, the All New Saint Vincent de Paul Clothes Closet is now open for business in Saint Ann Church Hall on the Second and Fourth Saturdays of every month from 9:00am until 12:00pm. All are welcome to drop by and check out the All New Clothes Closet by entering through the Smith Street doors of Saint Ann Church Hall.

Donations of gently worn clothing and shoes are now gratefully accepted during our regular hours and in the bin located in the Saint Ann School parking lot. Please note that we cannot accept donations of books, toys, or household items. For more information about the Saint Vincent de Paul Clothes Closet, please contact Bridget Nelligan at 781-572-4752 or Cathy Kyrouz at 978-290-1756. Thank you for your generous support!


Saint Vincent de Paul Society
Help Us Help Others!
New Volunteers Always Welcome!

The Saint Vincent de Paul Society is an international organization that is dedicated to responding to any request from any person or family in need. Here on Cape Ann, we work through Holy Family Parish and Our Lady of Good Voyage Parish to serve the poor and the needy. Help us help others! Donations can be pushed through the mail slot in the parish office, dropped in the collection basket at any Weekend Mass, or mailed to:

Saint Vincent de Paul Society
74 Pleasant Street
Gloucester, Massachusetts 01930

New members and volunteers are always welcome! For more information about the Saint Vincent de Paul Society and its good work in our parishes and hometowns, please contact Harry Miller at 978-281-8672 or Robert Weeks at svdpmember1@gmail.com. If you or someone you know needs our help, please call 978-281-8672. Thank you for your generous support for the Saint Vincent de Paul Society! May God bless you and your family!


Saints of Summer
Mini-Retreat Series
Continues Friday, July 22nd

Feast of Saint Mary Magdalen

Summer is a good time of year to step back from the business and busyness of daily life and focus on our relationships with Jesus, our church, and those we are called to love. Unfortunately, few among us are able to leave behind home, work, and family for a real retreat from the responsibilities of the world. For this reason, the Catholic Community of Gloucester & Rockport, in collaboration with the Assisi Project, is pleased to announce a special series of mini-retreats called The Saints of Summer.

Throughout his priestly ministry, Pope Francis has called people of all ages and backgrounds to learn about and pray with the saints. The Holy Father believes in his heart that the saints bring us closer to Christ and to each other. He says: “The saints are still here, not far from us; and their images in our churches evoke the ‘cloud of witnesses’ that always surrounds us (cf. Hebrews 12:1)…The saints remind us that even in our lives, however weak and marked by sin, holiness can unfold (4-7-21).”

In this spirit of unfolding holiness, all are invited to join us twice each month in July, August, and September for a series of two-hour mini-retreats. These moments of prayer, reflection, and adoration will focus on the lives of six amazing saints: Saint Ann, Saint Mary Magdalen, Saint Clare of Assisi, Saint Rose of Viterbo, Our Lady of the Angels, and Our Lady of Sorrows.

Each mini-retreat will begin with the celebration of Holy Mass and Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament at 8:00am. After our shared prayer, Father Jim and-or Cliff Garvey will offer a reflection on the life, inspiration, and veneration of a saint whose life of holiness has inspired men and women all around the world. There will be time for questions and faith sharing, too. After our reflection and discussion, all are invited to pray in silent adoration of the Blessed Sacrament and in veneration of holy relics of each saint of the day. We will conclude each day of prayer beginning at 9:30am with the Holy Rosary followed by Benediction of the Blessed Sacrament. Here’s the rest of our summer schedule of mini-retreats:

Saints of Summer 2 – Saint Mary Magdalen
Feast Day – Friday, July 22nd
Begins with Mass at 8:00am
Our Lady of Good Voyage Church
Gloucester, Massachusetts

Saints of Summer 3 – Our Lady of the Angels
Saturday, August 6th
Begins with Mass at 8:00am
Our Lady of Good Voyage Church
Gloucester, Massachusetts

Saints of Summer 4 – Saint Clare of Assisi
Feast Day – Thursday, August 11th
Begins with Mass at 8:00am
Our Lady of Good Voyage Church
Gloucester, Massachusetts

Saints of Summer 5 – Saint Rose of Viterbo
Saturday, September 3rd
Begins with Mass at 8:00am
Our Lady of Good Voyage Church
Gloucester, Massachusetts

Saints of Summer 6 – Our Lady of Sorrows
Feast Day – Thursday, September 15th
Begins with Mass at 8:00am
Our Lady of Good Voyage Church
Gloucester, Massachusetts

We hope and pray that you and your family will be able to join us for all or even just part of this unique series of mini-retreats in celebration of The Saints of Summer! For more information about this series or about the good work of the Assisi Project in our home parishes, please contact Cliff Garvey at cgarvey@assisiproject.com. Mark your calendar! Spread the word! Bring a friend! Let’s pray together! All are invited! All are welcome!

Learn More: Franciscan Media’s Saint of the Day


Safe & Easy Electronic Giving

The righteous give generously (Psalm 37:21).

Electronic giving has become an essential component of parish support in the Catholic Community of Gloucester & Rockport; and it is available in both Holy Family Parish and Our Lady of Good Voyage Parish. It is safe and easy to make online donations to your home parish using a credit card, debit card, or electronic check.

Donations can be made on a weekly, monthly, or one-time-only basis; and it takes just a few minutes to set up a secure personal account. In additional to the weekly offering, you can also give electronically to our church restoration funds which helps us plan for the repair and maintenance of our beloved and historic churches.

During these challenging times, Holy Family Parish and Our Lady of Good Voyage Parish need your support more than ever before! Please prayerfully consider enrolling in our ‘We Share!’ electronic giving program! For more information about setting up a new account or for assistance with your existing account, please contact Father Jim at frjim@ccgronline.com. Thank you for your generous support for our parishes! May God bless you and your family, now and always!

Support Holy Family Parish
Support Our Lady of Good Voyage Parish


About Us

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!

Follow us on Twitter: @CCGRonline

This Week’s Homepage
Dedicated to Our Newly Baptized Young Disciples