Our Pastor’s Message
Augustine on Anger

By Father Jim

On August 28th, we remember Saint Augustine of Hippo, who lived for seventy-five years from 354AD until 430AD. During his long life’s journey, Augustine went from being a playboy and pleasure-seeker to a Christian convert, then priest, then bishop, and finally to saint and Doctor of the Church. Augustine was a prolific writer. Two of his books, Confessions and City of God, remain fundamentally important texts for those studying politics, theology, and spirituality. Augustine was also a celebrated preacher. It is believed that he preached as many as 10,000 sermons, some of which lasted as long as an hour!

Among Saint Augustine’s five hundred sermons that remain available to us, one (#58) stands out as particularly relevant to our day and time. It is addressed to adults preparing for the Sacrament of Baptism and serves as a beautiful and powerful catechesis on the Lord’s Prayer. In this sermon, Augustine explores every line, examines it word by word, and reflects on how we are called to live it in our daily lives. Perhaps the most compelling passage deals with how we should “forgive those who trespass against us.” As it turns out, forgiveness is no easy task — even for a future saint.

Saint Augustine explains that we often forgive with words, but fail to forgive with our hearts. Anger, grudges, jealousies, and a desire for revenge can linger like a cancer at the core of our being. He explains that anger often evolves into hatred which can be devastating to both the object of our anger and to the salvation of our own souls. Augustine writes: “What is anger? Lust for revenge. What is hatred? Anger grown old.” The worst part is that unresolved anger can become hatred both energized and enlarged. He writes: “Anger is a speck, hatred is a beam.”

When we fail to forgive from the heart, which is the only real way to deal with anger, Augustine explains that we “rake up evil suspicions, water the speck, and by watering it, it is cultivated, and by cultivating it, it becomes a beam.” This beam of hatred is a heavy cross for a person to carry. It can become a threat not just to the lives and safety of others, but also a threat to ourselves and to our souls. As Saint John writes: “All who hate a brother or sister are murderers, and you know that murderers do not have eternal life abiding in them (1 John 3:15).” In other words, those who hate others, for whatever reason, are murderers, and unrepentant murderers are not blessed with life in heaven.

Saint Augustine says that we should “tremble with terror” at this warning. He writes: “You have not wounded your brother [or sister] in the flesh. You have not cut down his [or her] body with any stroke. There is only the brooding of hate in your heart, and so you are held for murder and your are guilty in the eyes of God.” With so much anger, hatred, and division swirling around in the world, it is possible for good people to get caught up in it. And it is even possible for faith-filled people like us to be ensnared in gossip, argument, and name-calling. For this reason, Augustine cries out: “Amend your ways! Straighten yourself out!”

Almost sixteen centuries after his death, Saint Augustine reminds us that true forgiveness is not merely the work of words. It is the work of hearts — the whole heart. It takes courage, sincerity, and real humility to forgive completely. As Sirach says: “My child, conduct your affairs with humility, and you will be loved more than a giver of gifts. Humble yourself the more, the greater you are, and you will find favor with God (Sirach 3:17-18).” Let us, then, put down the heavy beams of hatred. Let us ask God to forgive our sins; and let us forgive the offences of others from the bottom of our hearts. And let us walk together as brothers and sisters on our journey home to the Lord. Saint Augustine, pray for us!

Reverend James M. Achadinha, Pastor
Catholic Community of Gloucester & Rockport
Contact: frjim@ccgronline.com

CCGR Weekly Newsletter (8-28-22)
Bringing Home the Word (8-28-22)
The Kids Bulletin (8-28-22)


Call to Prayer
Praying with Saint Augustine

A Prayer for Healing
By Saint Augustine

Lord, I commit my failures
as well as my successes into your hands;
and I bring for your healing
the people and the situations,
the wrongs and the hurts of the past.

Give me courage, strength, and generosity
to let go and move on,
leaving the past behind,
and living fully in the present.

Lead me to be always positive
as I entrust the past to your mercy,
the present to your love,
and the future to your providence. Amen.

A Prayer for the Pilgrimage of Life
By Saint Augustine

Father, you are full of compassion.
I commit and commend myself to you,
in whom I am and live and know.
Be the goal of my pilgrimage,
and my rest along the way.

Let my soul take refuge
from the crowding turmoil of worldly thoughts
beneath the shadow of your wings.
Let my heart, this sea of restless waves,
find peace in you, O God. Amen.

Words of Wisdom
By Pope Francis

God gives every Christian the grace
to write a story in the life
of his or her brothers and sisters,
especially those who have done something
wrong or regrettable.
With a smile, word, or embrace,
we can pass on to others
the most precious thing
that we have ever received.
What is this most precious thing?
It is forgiveness,
and we must share it with others (4-24-19).

Listen: Saint of the Day – Augustine of Hippo


Our Lady of Good Voyage
Summer Carillon Concerts
Friday, September 2nd

Mark your calendars! Save the date! A much-loved summer tradition has returned to Our Lady of Good Voyage Parish and the Catholic Community of Gloucester & Rockport! Our Summer Carillon Concerts will conclude on Friday, September 2nd 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. Our final carillon concert of the season is scheduled for Friday, September 2nd at 6:30pm. For more information, please contact Luann Pallazola at lpallazola@gmail.com. Spread the word! Bring a friend or neighbor! All are invited! All are welcome! Please join us!

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


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
Saint Clare of Assisi – Consumed by Love

Assisi Project Podcast
Listen Now!

Saints of Summer 4
Our Lady of the Angels — Leaning In

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 Only Safe Rule is to Give More Than We Can Spare
C.S. Lewis

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 Charles Newmann III