This Week’s Message
On the Lookout for Blessings

By Cardinal Blaise Cupich

During his trip to Canada last month, Pope Francis cautioned against taking a negative view of life. This “is often born of a faith that feels under attack and things of faith as a kind of ‘armor’ defending us against the world.” To bitterly complain with a “crusading spirit that the world is evil and sin reigns”, he warned, is dangerous, adding that “this is not Christian, for God…has a positive view of the world.”

The Evangelist Luke will be teaching us over these weeks, until the end of the liturgical year, to be on the watch so that we can recognize the many ways that God’s kingdom is coming into our midst. Luke’s underlying conviction is that good has won the day, for Christ has vanquished evil once and for all. That may be hard for us to believe, given all the ills inflicted on the world by natural disasters, sinful humanity, and the frailty of our moral nature. The onslaught of evil seems to be unending with illness, tragedy, and corruption. It is easy to understand how one might become negative about life. But as the pope observes, such negativity easily results in a distorted view of life, to the point that we no longer recognize our blessings, and we begin to let cynicism rob us of our joy and good humor.

Consider the story of a man who decided on a beautiful spring day to leave work early and take a drive in his new convertible. He was enjoying the day so much that he began to swerve as he drove on the two-lane road. Suddenly, a car came around the curve from the opposite direction. The driver rolled down her window and yelled, “Pig!” The man was so angry that he looked back at her and yelled, “Sow!” But when he looked back at the road and drove around the curve, he slammed into a herd of pigs! The woman was trying to warn him of danger, but his defensiveness blinded him to the help that she was trying to offer.

Some years ago, a friend recounted how he was standing in line to check his bags at the airport; and he overheard the passenger in front of him berating the agent at the counter. The irate traveler was upset that his flight was canceled and he had to be rebooked on another itinerary that involved transfers. When he left, my friend apologized on his behalf, telling the agent how sorry he was that she had to endure such rude behavior. “Oh, that’s okay,” she replied. “He is going to Dallas, but his bags are going to Duluth.” Then she winked to let him know that she was only kidding, but it did reveal that in a difficult moment, she kept her cool and good humor.

Yes, the world can be unkind and hostile to the point that we convince ourselves that evil is winning over good. But this is why we need to hear over and over again in these weeks that the kingdom of God is always breaking forth into our lives and our world. Christ is always doing something new, as Pope Francis often tells us. This is why we need to be on the lookout for blessings that come to us in ways that we never expected. The more we are thankful and believe that God’s kingdom is always breaking forth in our world to overcome and overturn evil, the less likely it will be that we will become cynical, but instead maintain our good humor and live the joy of the Gospel.

About the Author: Since 2014, Cardinal Blaise Cupich has served as Archbishop of Chicago. You can read more of his columns, and learn more about his life and ministry by clicking here.

CCGR Weekly Newsletter (8-14-22)
Bringing Home the Word (8-14-22)
The Kids Bulletin (8-14-22)


Call to Prayer
A Prayer for the World

By Pope Francis

Triune Lord,
wondrous community of infinite love,
teach us to contemplate you
in the beauty of the universe,
for all things speak of you.

Awaken our praise and thankfulness
for every being that you have made.
Give us the grace
to feel profoundly joined
to everything that is.

God of love,
show us our place in this world
as channels of your love
for all the creatures of this earth,
for not one of them
is forgotten in your sight.

Enlighten those who possess power and money
so that they may avoid the sin of indifference,
so that they may love the common good,
advance the weak,
and care for this world
in which we all live.

The poor and the earth cry out.
O Lord, seize us with your power and light,
help us to protect all life,
to prepare for a better future,
for the coming of your kingdom
of justice, peace, love, and beauty. Praise to 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.

Pray More: Laudato Si Movement Prayer Book


Pastor’s Note
Welcome Father Andrew Siasa
Weekend of August 13th & 14th

Annual Mission Appeal

This weekend, the Catholic Community of Gloucester & Rockport is blessed to welcome Father Andrew Siasa, a member of the Apostolic Life Community of Priests, who will celebrate all of our Weekend Masses. Father Andrew is a priest of the Diocese of Tanga in Tanzania, and is currently studying at Duquesne University in Indiana. During Mass, he will speak on behalf of the Sisters of Our Lady of Usambara in Tanzania. These sisters work with communities in Tanga in ministries related to youth faith formation; serving the poor and the sick; and running orphanages for children who have lost parents to malaria, HIV-AIDS, and other diseases.

In support of the good works of the Sisters of Usambara, both Holy Family Parish and Our Lady of Good Voyage Parish will take up a second collection at all Weekend Masses on Saturday, August 13th and Sunday, August 14th. As always, your generous support will be much appreciated by the Sisters and those they serve. On behalf of our pastoral team and all of our fellow parishioners, we give God thanks for the Sisters of Usambara and we warmly welcome Father Andrew to the Catholic Community of Gloucester & Rockport! Thank you for joining us! Peace and blessings to all! — Father Jim

Learn More: Usambara Sisters


Our Lady of Good Voyage
Summer Carillon Concerts
Friday, August 19th

Mark your calendars! Save the dates! A much-loved summer tradition returns next month to Our Lady of Good Voyage Parish and the Catholic Community of Gloucester & Rockport! Our Summer Carillon Concerts will continue on Friday, August 19th at 6:30pm (rain or shine)!

This year, Luann Pallazola, Cynthia Cafasso, and Thomas Dort have prepared programs that include familiar classical and international pieces, popular hymns and songs, patriotic melodies, and even selections especially for children! We are especially excited that Thomas Dort, a young disciple who just turned thirteen years old and learned to play the carillon bells during the pandemic, will perform along with our talented adult musicians!

Installed in 1922, the carillon bells in Our Lady of Good Voyage Church were the first toned set in the United States. Although the bells can be heard from blocks away, the sound is always best near the church. This year, Our Lady’s Guild will be selling cold drinks, snacks, and even Super Raffle tickets to support our planned repair and restoration of the church’s historic bell towers.

Our Summer Carillon Concerts are a great opportunity for the whole family to gather with friends, neighbors, and fellow parishioners to enjoy the gift of music. Concerts are scheduled for Friday, August 19th at 6:30pm; Friday, August 26th at 6:30pm; and Friday, September 2nd at 6:30pm. For more information, please contact Luann Pallazola at lpallazola@gmail.com. Spread the word! All are invited! All are welcome! Please join us!

Read: Our Lady’s Carillon: Ringing for a Century


Sacrament of Baptism
Reborn as Children of God!

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).” In July, Father Jim baptized the following children with holy water in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit:

Eloise Serafina Campbell
Jett Jerome Cusumano
Landon James Fulford
Michael Graffeo
Mickey Brian Janeski
Elysse Marie Koller
Ryland Joseph McCarthy
Christian Alexander Mitchell
Ivy Amelia Prestigiovanni

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. If you are an adult and have not been baptized and would like to prepare for the Sacraments of Initiation, please contact Cliff Garvey at cgarvey@ccgronline.com. May God bless our newly baptized young disciples and their families!

Learn More: Sacraments of the Church (1 Minute Videos)


Saints of Summer
Mini-Retreat Series
Saturday, September 3rd

Saint Rose of Viterbo

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 1
Saint Ann – Grandmother to the World
Assisi Project Podcast
Listen Now!

Saints of Summer 2
Saint Mary Magdalen – Apostle for the Rest of Us

Assisi Project Podcast
Listen Now!

Saints of Summer 3
Our Lady of the Angels — Leaning In

Assisi Project Podcast
Coming Soon!

Saints of Summer 4
Saint Clare of Assisi

Assisi Project Podcast
Coming Soon!

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

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In Memory of Richard & Patricia Alexander