Our Pastor’s Message
Praying with Ann & Joachim

By Father Jim

This weekend’s responsorial psalm reminds us: “You are great, and you do wondrous deeds; you alone are God (Psalm 86).” This beautiful verse encourages us to always remember that God is good, God is powerful, and God works miracles. The psalmist also reminds us of God’s goodness, kindness, and love for each one of us, no matter where we find ourselves on life’s journey.

Our patrons, Saint Ann and Saint Joachim, were faithful Jews and devoted to practicing the teachings and traditions of their faith. And yet, tradition holds that they were met with despair and disappointment because they could not conceive a child. But instead of turning their backs on God, as so many of us do when our prayers seem to go unanswered, Ann and Joachim turn toward God. With hearts filled with faith, hope, and love, Ann and Joachim prayed more and more fervently that God might answer their prayers, provide for their needs, and bless them with a child to love.

We can only imagine Ann and Joachim rejoicing when the angels informed them that their prayers were answered. They were told that they would have a child and that child, the Blessed Virgin Mary, would be known and loved throughout the world. We can only imagine their gratitude and love for God’s “great and wondrous deeds.” We can only imagine them uniting their hearts and voices in prayer: “Harken, O Lord, to my prayer and attend to the sound of my pleading…You are great, and you do wondrous deeds; you alone are God!”

More than two thousand years later, Saint Ann and Saint Joachim are powerful patrons of married couples, married couples who are having difficulty conceiving a child, expectant mothers and fathers, parents and grandparents, and all of our elderly brothers and sisters. Saint Ann is also venerated as a patroness of sailors, homemakers, and single women. In addition, the Basilica of Saint Ann de Beaupre near Quebec City in Canada is widely regarded as a place of miracles for the sick and suffering, especially for those stricken by paralysis and other physical disabilities.

Each year on July 26th, the Catholic Church celebrates the Feast of Saint Ann and Saint Joachim. On this important day for our local parishes, all friends, neighbors, and fellow parishioners are invited to join me for the Holy Rosary at 5:00pm, Holy Mass at 5:30pm, and Eucharistic Adoration and Confessions from 6:00pm until 7:00pm in Saint Ann Church.

Until then, we pray together for the intercession of our beloved patron saints. We ask Saint Ann, Saint Joachim, and the Blessed Mother to pray for us, for our parishes, and for all who live, work, and worship in the Catholic Community of Gloucester & Rockport. We ask them to pray for Pope Francis, Cardinal Sean, and the Church all around the world. And we ask them to help us live the Gospel, share God’s love, and rebuild the Church. Saint Ann, pray for us! Saint Joachim, pray for us! Our Lady of Good Voyage, pray for us!

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

CCGR Weekly Newsletter (7-23-23)
Bringing Home the Word (7-23-23)
The Kids Bulletin (7-23-23)

Art Credit: The Meeting of Ann & Joachim by Filippino Lippi (1457-1504)


Feast of Saints Ann & Joachim
Wednesday, July 26th
Saint Ann Church

5:00pm – Holy Rosary
5:30pm – Holy Mass
6:00pm – Holy Hour & Confessions
Please join us! All are invited! All are welcome!


Call to Prayer
A Prayer to Saints Ann & Joachim

Saint Ann and Saint Joachim,
you are the good parents of the Blessed Virgin Mary
and blessed grandparents of our Lord Jesus Christ.
When we are afraid:
Help us to trust in the Lord.
When life seems barren:
Help us to trust in God’s mercy.
When we are confused:
Help us to find the way to God.
When we are ashamed:
Remind us that we are God’s children.
When we are selfish:
Teach us to cling only to what lasts.
When we sin:
Lead us to do God’s will.
When we are lost in the desert:
Lead us to those God has called us to love.
You know God’s will for the family:
Keep all families close to you.
You know God’s will for husband and wife:
Help us to live in chastity and fidelity.
You trusted God’s will:
Help us to respect God’s gift of fertility.
You suffered without children:
Intercede for married couples who seek to conceive.
You gave birth to the Blessed Mother:
Inspire married couples to be co-creators with God.
You taught Mary, the Mother of God:
Teach us to nurture children in faith, hope, and love.
You trusted in God:
Pray for all married couples.
You trusted in God:
Pray for all parents.
You trusted in God:
Pray for all grandparents.

Saint Ann, pray for us!
Saint Joachim, pray for us!
Our Lady of Good Voyage, pray for us!

Listen: Saint of the Day – Ann & Joachim


Holy Family Parish
World Day of Grandparents
Crowning of Saint Ann & Virgin Mary
Sunday, July 23rd

In celebration of the 2nd Annual World Day of Grandparents and the Elderly, all are invited to join the Catholic Community of Gloucester & Rockport in honoring our patrons, Saint Ann and Saint Joachim, with the Crowning of Saint Ann and the Blessed Virgin Mary on Sunday, July 23rd after 8:15am Mass in Saint Ann Church. For more information, please contact Father Jim at frjim@ccgronline.com. As a community united in prayer, fellowship, and service, let us come together and raise our hearts and voices in praying for the intercession of our patrons. Saint Ann, pray for us! Saint Joachim, pray for us! Our Lady of Good Voyage, pray for us!

Learn More: World Day of Grandparents Message 2023


The Assisi Project
Saints for All Seasons 2023
Saturday, August 5th

Dedication of Saint Mary Major Basilica

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 veneration 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
True Image of the Poor Christ
An Assisi Project Podcast

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

Saint Teresa of Calcutta
Saturday, September 2nd
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! For more in- formation, please contact Cliff Garvey at cgarvey@ccgronline.com. Save the dates! Spread the word! Bring a friend! All are invited! All are welcome!

Listen: Saint of the Day – Dedication of Saint Mary Major


The Assisi Project
We’re Praying for You!

Founded in 2007 by Father Jim and Cliff Garvey, the Assisi Project is a Fellowship of Franciscans in Spirit with members, friends, and followers around the world. We are dedicated to helping believers of all ages and backgrounds more faithfully live the Good News of Jesus through the inspiration and intercession of Saint Francis and Saint Clare of Assisi. Members of the Assisi Project, ranging in age from 15 to 98, pray each day for those who ask for our prayers. If you would like our fellowship to pray for your or your special intention, please contact Cliff at cgarvey@ccgronline.com. Saint Francis of Assisi, pray for us! Saint Clare of Assisi, pray for us! Our Lady of the Angels, pray for us! May the Lord give you peace!

Learn More: The Assisi Project


The Gift of Music
Our Lady of Good Voyage
Summer Carillon Concerts

Begins Friday, August 11th! 

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 begin on Friday, August 11th 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 selections especially for children!

Installed in 1922, the carillon bells in Our Lady of Good Voyage Church were the first toned set in the United States. The carillon’s thirty-one bronze bells hang from a steel beam within the bell-shaped west tower. Our bells range in weight from 16 pounds to 3,000 pounds.

The carillon bells at Our Lady of Good Voyage were forged by the Taylor Foundry in Loughboro, England. In order to avoid import taxes upon their arrival in Gloucester, the church was declared a bonded warehouse by the Collector of Customs in Boston, who happened to be a friend of the local congressman. Soon after, a bill declaring them “works of art” was passed by Congress and signed into law by President Warren G. Harding.

Although the bells can be heard from blocks away, the sound is always best near our church. This year, Our Lady’s Guild will be selling cold drinks, snacks, and even Super Raffle tickets to support our parish. 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.

Additional concerts are scheduled for Friday, August 18th at 6:30pm; Friday, August 25th at 6:30pm; and Friday, September 1st at 6:30pm. For more information, please contact Luann Pallazola at lpallazola@gmail.com. Spread the word! All are invited! All are welcome!


The Gift of Eucharist
Real Presence of Christ

We believe that the host and wine when consecrated at Mass only appear to be bread and wine. In reality, they are the Body and Blood of Christ. Other Christians sometimes think that Catholics are being cannibalistic in saying that we eat the Body and Blood of Christ. We are not, but we also read in the Gospel of John that Jesus himself says exactly that: “Whoever eats my body and drinks my blood has eternal life (John 6:54).”

What we are receiving within our bodies is the resurrected and glorified Christ who is with God and the Holy Spirit in heaven. Since the Triune God is everywhere, we are always in the presence of Jesus and the Holy Trinity.

By receiving the Eucharist, we are not receiving pieces of Jesus (e.g. his hands or feet), but the whole Jesus which is a mystery to us. The Eucharist is truly the body and blood, soul and divinity of Christ; and it is always in the resurrected and glorified state. For this reason, when the whole congregation receives the Eucharist, we are all brothers and sisters to each other. We are for that moment and in a very special way the Body of Christ!

Because we believe in the Real Presence of Christ in the Eucharist, we know that when we enter any Catholic Church, we have the Blessed Sacrament in our tabernacles. The sanctuary lamp signifies the Real Presence of our Divine Lord and Savior. What a marvelous thing that we can come and actually sit with Jesus!

As wonderful as it is to have Jesus before our eyes, it cannot compare to what Jesus gives us in the Eucharist. We do not just sit with him. We do not just look at him. We take him into ourselves. The graced radiation that we receive when Jesus comes into us fills our whole body with his presence, his grace, and his goodness. It is a perfect moment to ask for help, healing, forgiveness, and strength. When we receive the Holy Communion and say Amen, we mean I believe in the Real Presence of Christ in the Eucharist (Source: Franciscan Spirit Blog).

Eucharistic Retreat – God’s Embrace
Father Ronald Rolheiser, OMI


Safe & Easy Electronic Giving

Lord, teach me to be generous. — Saint Ignatius of Loyola

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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