ADULT & YOUTH FAITH FORMATION

Light & Darkness
A Workshop on Spiritual Combat
October 24th-October 26th

During the last week of August, a large group of parishioners gathered at Saint AnthonyChapel for the Catholic Community of Gloucester & Rockport’s Fifth Annual Summer Retreat: “Everyone’s Vocation to Everyday Holiness.” During this intense five-night retreat, parishioners and friends ranging in age from 16 to 94 read and reflected on Pope Francis’s Apostolic Exhortation: “Rejoice and Be Glad: On the Call to Holiness in Today’s World.” Without question, the most compelling evening of the retreat focused on the Holy Father’s advice and guidance about spiritual combat, vigilance, and discernment. He writes: “The Christian life is a constant battle. We need strength and courage to withstand the temptations of the devil and to proclaim the Gospel. This battle is sweet, for it allows us to rejoice each time the Lord triumphs in our lives.”

In this spirit, all parishioners, friends, and guests of the Catholic Community of Gloucester& Rockport are invited to join Father Jim and Cliff Garvey for “Light & Darkness: A Workshop on Spiritual Combat, Vigilance & Discernment” from Wednesday, October 24th through Friday, October 26th in Our Lady of Good Voyage Church. During this three-night mini-course, we will read and reflect together on the sacred scriptures, the wisdom of the saints, and the writings of Pope Francis. Overall, our goal will be to learn about how darkness works in our world and how we can work against that darkness with the help of our Lord Jesus Christ who is the Light of the World.

Each evening of this special adult faith formation program will begin at 7:00pm with Evening Prayer from the Liturgy of the Hours. After this time of shared prayer, Father Jim and Cliff will lead our community in a period of reflection, discussion, and faith sharing. Each evening will conclude by 8:30pm with Night Prayer. If you would like to join us for all or even part of this special workshop on spiritual combat, vigilance, and discernment, please be sure to contact Cliff Garvey at cgarvey@ccgronline.com by Sunday, October 21st. A donation of $30 is requested from those who can afford it in support of our adult faith formation ministries. All reading materials will be provided. Please join us! Bring a friend! All are invited! All are welcome!

Learn More: Pope Francis on Coping with Spiritual Battles

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Fall Day of Prayer & Reflection
Joy & Suffering with Padre Pio
Saturday, October 6th

Earlier this year, Pope Francis visited the House for the Relief of Suffering, a hospital founded by Saint Padre Pio. Afterwards, Pope Francis celebrated Mass at the Shrine of Saint Pio of Pietrelcina, Italy. In his homily, the Holy Father preached about the call to suffer and the three words that summarize the life of a saint: humility, prayer, and wisdom. The pope said: “All of theology is contained here! If you have a problem, if you are sad, if you are sick, abandon yourself into the arms of Jesus!”

The Roman Catholic Church celebrates the Feast of Saint Pio of Pietrelcina on September 23rd and the Feast of Saint Francis of Assisi on October 4th. In commemoration of these two great saints, and as part of the Catholic Community of Gloucester & Rockport’s “Year for Discernment”, all fellow parishioners and friends are invited to join Father Jim, Cliff Garvey, the Legion of Mary, and the Assisi Project for a Fall Day of Prayer & Reflection: “Joy & Suffering with Saint Pio” on Saturday, October 6th at Saint Anthony Chapel.

During this four-hour mini-retreat, we will explore the life, ministry, and patronage of Saint Pio of Pietrelcina and his special meaning for those who are called to suffer. This special morning of prayer and reflection will proceed according to the following schedule: Celebration of Holy Mass at 8:00am; First Reflection & Faith Sharing at 9:00am; Eucharistic Adoration & Rosary at 10:00am; Second Reflection & Faith Sharing at 11:00am; Angelus & Closing Prayers at 12:00pm.

Throughout the morning, there will be scheduled breaks and time for faith sharing, fellowship, and refreshments. Coffee, tea, and bottled water will be available throughout the morning. After our closing prayers, all are invited to remain for picnic lunch. During Mass, a collection will be taken in support of our adult faith formation ministry. If you would like to join us for our Fall Day of Prayer & Reflection in honor of Saint Pio and Saint Francis, please contact Cliff at cgarvey@ccgronline.com. Please join us! Bring a friend! Bring your family! All are invited! All are welcome!

Learn More: Saint Pio of Pietrelcina

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Youth Faith Formation
First Eucharist Preparation Program
Now Underway!

The Catholic Community of Gloucester & Rockport offers a creative and innovative way for children to prepare for the Sacraments of Penance & Reconciliation (Confession) and First Holy Communion. Our program is designed to prepare both children and their parents for these sacraments; to encourage lifelong relationships with Jesus Christ and the Roman Catholic Church; and to help families grow together in prayer, fellowship, and service.

Our program is simple and family-friendly! First, our top priority is to invite all families to attend one of our seven weekend Masses. Second, all second grade children and their parents, grandparents, or guardians are asked to attend two 90 minute workshops during the fall season and three 90 minute workshops during the winter-spring seasons. Each of these “Faith & Family Workshops” is offered at three different times so that each family can choose which option works best for them.

Our program begins during the weekend of October 13th-October 14th! Calendars and registration materials are posted below. Registration forms can be returned by mail or hand-delivered to our parish offices (located at 74 Pleasant Street in Gloucester). If you have questionsor need assistance with youth faith formation in the Catholic Community of Gloucester & Rockport, please contact Betsy Works at bworks@ccgronline.com. Please join us! All are invited! All are welcome!

Second Grade Registration-Schedule 2018-2019

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Youth Faith Formation
Confirmation Preparation Program
Year 2 Now Underway!

For too many teenagers, the Sacrament of Confirmation has sadly become a kind of graduation from the Catholic Church, rather than the joyful beginning of life as an active adult disciple within the Church. We hope to end this tragic transition from enthusiasm to ambivalence by transforming sacramental preparation into an engaging process for the whole family. First, we will continue to place primary focus on attending Mass. For more than a century, the Church has required every parish to provide some kind of religious education for students who seek the Sacrament of Confirmation. During recent decades, we have asked parents to dedicate one hour each week to their child’s religious education by enrolling them in a youth faith formation program. Unfortunately, we failed to remind parents of their baptismal promise to be the first teachers of their children in all matters related to faith and morals; and that the most important component of that responsibility is attending Mass as a family. In our increasingly busy, stressful, and over-scheduled world, it has become common for parents to entrust their children to us for an hour of instruction each week but not join usfor Mass each weekend. So, we will continue to ask parents to dedicate one hour each week to their teenager’s faith formation — by bringing them to church!

We will also no longer ask teenagers to spend countless hours in a classroom in preparation for the Sacrament of Confirmation. Beginning in the ninth grade, all high school students are invited to participate in our two-year program of formation that will prepare them to receive the Seven Gifts of the Holy Spirit at Confirmation. During the first year, our students will participate in a series of seven interactive workshops about the teachings and traditions of the Catholic Church. These sessions will be scheduled on Sunday mornings to coincide with our weekend Mass schedule. During the second year, our students will participate in nine additional workshops (including a four-hour mini-retreat) designed to help them grow in prayer, fellowship, and service; to prepare them to receive the Gifts of the Holy Spirit; and to jumpstart their lives as faithful and faith-filled young adult disciples. Registration forms and schedules for each year are posted below. For more information, please contact Betsy Works at bworks@ccgronline.com. Please join us! All are invited! All are welcome!

Learn More: Sacrament of Confirmation
Confirmation Calendar & Registration (Year 1)
Confirmation Calendar & Registration (Year 2)

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Adult Faith Formation
The Way
Sacramental Preparation for Adults

I am the way, the truth, and the life (John 14:6).

“The Way” was among the earliest names for the followers of the Risen Christ. Indeed, the Way appears as a scriptural reference to the earliest Christian communities in the Acts of the Apostles. In addition, both before and after his conversion, tradition holds that Saint Paul referred to the disciples of Christ as part of “The Way.” More than two thousand years later, Catholic Christians are still part of the Way of Jesus Christ. But as we all know, a life of discipleship is not a hobby or pastime. It is a vocation, a way of life that lays claim to our whole heart, mind, and strength. As disciples, our lives should be focused on and inspired by our faith in Jesus Christ, who is our merciful redeemer, friend, and brother. And as disciples, we are called to reach out to those who need our help in growing closer to Christ and the Church.

If you are an adult (age 18 and over) and have not received all of the Sacraments of Initiation in the Roman Catholic Church (Baptism, Eucharist, and Confirmation), then please consider joining the Way, our adult faith formation program that will meet on Sunday mornings after our 8:15am Mass beginning on October 14th. Typically called the Rite of Christian Initiation for Adults, the Way is a seven month program that prepares adults to be received into the Roman Catholic Church at the Easter Vigil. As part of this same program, we will prepare adults for the Sacrament of Confirmation (to be received at either our local Easter Vigil Mass or at a regional archdiocesan celebration).

Our group will meet twice each month for fellowship, formation, and faith sharing. As a community of disciples, we will learn together about the basic beliefs, teachings, and traditions of the Catholic Church. We will explore the methods of prayer that have brought generations of believers closer to Christ and his Church. And we will talk openly and honestly about the challenges of living an authentic life of faith, hope, and love in the modern world. If you would like to learn more about this journey of faith and become part of a unique fellowship in preparation for the sacraments of the Roman Catholic Church, then please contact Cliff Garvey at cgarvey@ccgronline.com. Please join us! All are invited! All are welcome!

The Way Registration Form 2018-2019
Learn More: An Introduction to the Sacraments

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The Assisi Project
Saturday Morning with Saint Francis
Saturday, October 27th

Founded in 2007 by Father Jim and Cliff Garvey during their first pilgrimage and retreat in Italy, the Assisi Project is a “Fellowship of Franciscans in Spirit” with members, friends, and followers in the United States, Canada, Europe, and South America. Our mission is to help adults of all ages more faithfully live the Gospel of Christ and grow closer to the Church through the inspiration and intercession of Saint Francis and Saint Clare of Assisi. On the last Saturday morning of every month, the Assisi Project meets in Saint Ann Church for Mass, formation, fellowship, and faith sharing. Our next “Saturday with Saint Francis” mini-retreat is scheduled for October 27th from 8:00am until 10:00am. For more information about this month’s formation topic, please click on the link below. Here’s our schedule for the coming months:

  • November 24, 2018: Begins with Mass at 8:00am
  • December 29, 2018: Begins with Mass at 8:00am
  • January 26, 2019: Begins with Mass at 8:00am

In case of inclement weather, please check our website for possible cancellations and schedule changes. For more information about the Assisi Project and its good work in our parishes, please contact Cliff Garvey at cgarvey@ccgronline.com. Please join us! All are invited! All are welcome! Saint Francis of Assisi, pray for us! Saint Clare of Assisi, pray for us! Our Lady of Angels, pray for us! May the Lord give you peace!

Learn More: The Assisi Project

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Youth Faith Formation
Youth Choir & Music Ministry
Tuesday Afternoons

The Catholic Community of Gloucester & Rockport’s Youth Choir & Music Ministry meets weekly for fellowship and rehearsal at 5:00pm in Saint Ann Church. Each weekend, the youth choir sings at one of our three churches: Saint Ann Church, Saint Joachim Church, or Our Lady of Good Voyage Church. The Youth Choir & Music Ministry welcomes new members, ranging in age from kindergarten through high school. Young musicians are also welcome to join us! Being a part of this ministry is a great way to make new friends. In addition, it is a great way to participate more fully in the life of our parishes and to learn more about the teachings and traditions of the Catholic Church! For more information, please contact Patty Natti at pnatti@comcast.net. Please join us! All are invited! All are welcome!

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Youth Faith Formation
Call for Youth Altar Servers
Help Father Jim Serve God’s People!

Father Jim is full of energy and excitement, but as the only full-time priest assigned to the Catholic Community of Gloucester & Rockport, he sometimes needs our help! He is still hoping to create a team of youth altar servers to help him at Mass. All young disciples, age 8 through 17, are invited to participate on a weekly or monthly basis. Parents and adult parishioners are welcome to serve, too! Training is available! Being an altar server is a great way to grow in discipleship and to learn about the teachings and traditions of the Catholic Church.! For more information, please see Father Jim before or after Mass; or contact him at frjim@ccgronline.com. All are invited! All are welcome!

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Adult Faith Formation

In addition to our adult faith formation programs that focus on preparation for the Sacraments of Initiation, the Catholic Community of Gloucester & Rockport also offers the following programs for adults seeking to deepen their relationship with Christ and His Church:

  • Advent Mission & Retreat
  • Lent Mission & Retreat
  • Summer Evening Retreat
  • Spring & Fall Days of Prayer & Reflection
  • Seasonal Book Study Groups
  • Individual Spiritual Direction
  • Other Special Events

Please read our weekly newsletter or visit this page for the dates and times for these and other upcoming opportunities for adult faith formation. For more information about adult faith formation in the Catholic Community of Gloucester & Rockport, please contact Cliff Garvey, Associate Minister, at cgarvey@ccgronline.com. Please join us! All are welcome! Always!

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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