This Week’s Message
Blessing the Fleet

By Cardinal Richard Cushing

In this historic port of Gloucester, we honor and bless those who go down to the sea in ships. To those brave men whose daily life makes frequent access to the church impossible, the Church most gladly comes, with sacred and age-old ritual to pronounce a benediction upon their persons and their property, and upon the fruits of their toil. The Church’s ancient blessing is full of beauty and consoling promise. She asks Almighty God to watch over a ship even as he protected the Ark of Noah, to extend to the sailor a helping hand even as he did to Peter when the waves sought to engulf him. She asks that, after many felicitous journeys, he may return safely to his dear ones and ultimately to his eternal haven beyond this world.

Oldest perhaps of all human crafts is that by which the patient fisherman puts to sea in his relatively tiny bark to wrest from the depths of the mighty ocean abundant nourishment for those who remain on shore. The Son of God himself took part in this honorable employment. He lent a sturdy arm to the oar, a willing hand for the gathering in of the nets. From the sea, he drew his most beautiful illustrations; from the ranks of the sea, he selected his first Vicar on this earth. And when he commissioned his apostles, he said to them: “I shall make you fishers of men.” He spoke of the sea with kindly indulgence. He quieted the turmoil of its waters. He walked with gentle steps upon its breast. He was baptized in the River Jordan and the Jordan flowed on into the sea, blessing all waters by its contact with their God.

The natural virtues of a fisherman are two: trust in God and perseverance. Toiling on the sea has taught them both. Daily contact with an element so immense broadens the mind. Far from the noise and petty distractions of the bewildering life on shore, it teaches men to love silence, silence in which God alone talks to us. When the heavens open and the storms are let loose, the fisherman beholds, as does no one else, the awful majesty of nature, and if he be a man of prayer, his eyes seem to see the Divine Master walking on the waters and ears of faith hear once again the old command: “Peace, be still!” Time after time, the fisherman comes back to port convinced that a divine hand has held the wheel.

Hence fishermen are not like other men. They know not how strong a man can be, how weak a man can be. Their talk is not of the world of machines and factories, but they speak familiarly of fundamental things, changeless since the world began. The fisherman is a man of perseverance. No easy labors his, who in fair weather and in foul must let down his nets again and again without reward. Finally, he knows, nature will never give up the struggle and a worthy catch result. “Lord, we have labored all night in vain,” must often be the fisherman’s prayer. “Let down the nets once more” is God’s reply.

Brave fisherman of Gloucester, we praise and honor you. We bless these worthy ships that ride so gracefully upon the waters. So much a personality is a ship that it seems but normal that each should have its name. May all these names be registered within the Heart of Christ. May you often put out to sea, and as often return with a good catch to port again. May you prosper in this venerable trade. Your call to it was once given by the Master Himself: “Launch out into the deep!” And when for the last time the sails are furled and the engines cease to sing, may we all meet together in the Snug Harbor of Eternal Life.

About the Author: Cardinal Richard Cushing (1895-1970) served as Archbishop of Boston from 1944 until shortly before his death in 1970. Cardinal Cushing was a frequent visitor to Gloucester and Rockport, and he always greatly enjoyed Saint Peter’s Fiesta. Viva San Pietro!

CCGR Weekly Newsletter (6-25-23)
Bringing Home the Word (6-25-23)
The Kids Bulletin (6-25-23)


Saint Peter’s Fiesta
Outdoor Mass & Procession
Sunday, June 25th at 10am

This year, Saint Peter’s Fiesta runs from Wednesday, June 21st through Sunday, June 25th. All are invited to join Father Jim and Father Anthony Luongo of Ave Maria Parish in Lynnfield for an outdoor celebration of Holy Mass on Sunday, June 25th at 10:00am at Saint Peter’s Square in Gloucester. After Mass, all are welcome to join friends and fellow parishioners for the procession through the streets of our beloved city.

Trailers are still available for groups, families, and individuals who wish to participate in the procession with a religious-themed float in celebration of Saint Peter’s Fiesta. For more information about the 96th Saint Peter’s Fiesta, please contact Rose Aiello at 978-283-1664. Spread the word! Bring a friend! Please join us! All are welcome! Viva San Pietro!

Learn More: Saint Peter’s Fiesta


Call to Prayer
A Vigil for Healing
Friday, June 30th

In his message for the Thirty-First Annual World Day of the Sick, Pope Francis says: “We are all fragile and vulnerable, and we need the compassion that knows how to pause, approach, heal, and raise up. Therefore, the plight of the sick is a call that cuts through indifference and slows the pace of those who go on their way as if they had no sisters and brothers. [It] calls for prayer and closeness toward those who suffer.”

In communion with Pope Francis and in solidarity with the sick, the suffering, and those who feel left behind in our world, all friends, neighbors, and fellow parishioners of the Catholic Community of Gloucester & Rockport are invited to join us for a Vigil for Healing on Friday, June 30th from 5:30pm until 7:00pm in Saint Anthony Chapel.

Our Vigil for Healing will begin with Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament at 5:30pm. At 6:00pm, we will pray the Healing Rosary, a unique version of the Rosary offered for all those in need of healing in our parishes. It is rooted in sacred scriptures and was created by Father Thomas Connery as a way to pray for peace, healing, and reconciliation in our personal lives, in our communities, and in our troubled world. Our Vigil for Healing will conclude with Night Prayer and Benediction of the Blessed Sacrament beginning at 6:45pm.

Copies of the Healing Rosary are available for a donation of $5.00 per copy. All proceeds will benefit the Assisi Project and its good work in our parishes. For more information, please contact Cliff Garvey at Spread the word! Bring a friend! Please join us! All are invited! All are welcome!

Watch: Holy Rosary with Father Jim


The Assisi Project
Saints for All Seasons 2023
Begins Saturday, July 1st

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 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 and for the second straight year, the Assisi Project is pleased to announce a special series of summertime mini-retreats called Saints for All Seasons.

Throughout his long 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, closer to the Church, and closer to each other. He says: “The saints are still here, not far from us; and their images [and relics] 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 in July, August, and September for a series of two-hour mini-retreats. These mornings of prayer, reflection, and adoration will focus on the lives of three amazing saints: Saint Veronica Giuliani, Saint Mary Major, and Saint Teresa of Calcutta. Each mini-retreat will begin with the celebration of Holy Mass at 8:00am in Saint Anthony Chapel. After Mass, Father Jim and-or Cliff Garvey will offer a reflection on the life 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 each reflection, we will pray in silent adoration of the Blessed Sacrament and in venera- tion of the holy relics of each saint of the day. At 9:30am, we will conclude by praying the Holy Rosary and Benediction of the Blessed Sacrament. Here’s our upcoming schedule:

Saint Veronica Giuliani
Saturday, July 1st
Begins with Mass at 8:00am
Saint Anthony Chapel

Saint Mary Major
Saturday, August 5th
Begins with Mass at 8:00am
Saint Anthony Chapel

Saint Teresa of Calcutta
Begins with Mass at 8:00am
Saint Anthony Chapel

We hope and pray that you and your family will be able to join us for all or even just part of this special series in celebration of the saints which was so popular last summer! You do not need to be a member of the Assisi Project to join us for these special mornings of prayer and reflection! For more information about the Assisi Project and its good work in our parishes, please contact Cliff Garvey at Save the dates! Spread the word! Bring a friend! All are invited! All are welcome!

Learn More: The Assisi Project


Pastor’s Note
End of Fiscal Year Fundraising
Urgent Deadline – June 30th

As we enter the final weeks of the fiscal year, all friends, neighbors, and fellow parishioners of the Catholic Community of Gloucester & Rockport are encouraged to prayerfully consider a gift to the Grand Annual Collection at Holy Family Parish or the Pastor’s Challenge at Our Lady of Good Voyage Parish (to ensure that we are able to replace the front steps of the church).

Holy Family Parish
Grand Annual Collection
Goal — $75,000
Raised — $68,374
Need — $6,626

Our Lady of Good Voyage Parish
Front Steps Restoration
Goal — $35,000
Raised — $23,920
Need — $11,080

Our weekly offerings and these special fundraising campaigns are essential components of our parish budgets; and they are both vitally important to the financial stability of our beloved home parishes. We simply must reach our goals by the end of the fiscal year on June 30th!

Donation envelopes are available at the entrances of our churches and upon request from the parish office. During the coming weeks, let’s pray together that each of us, according to our means, will give generously to these fundraising campaigns! Every donation, large or small, can make a big difference! Please help us!

For more information about how you, your family, or your business can help ensure that our parishes end the year with balanced budgets and enough funding to repair and maintain our historic church buildings, please remember that you are always welcome to contact me. Thank you for your ongoing and generous support!

Reverend James M. Achadinha, Pastor
Catholic Community of Gloucester & Rockport


Safe & Easy Electronic Giving

Do good and share with others. — Hebrews 13:16

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 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!

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