Meeting of the clergy of Cape Ann

Every month, a group of  clergy from the region meet to discuss various issues of interest to all people of faith and the community in general (such as the Grace Center day shelter for the homeless). I was unaware of the time of the meeting yesterday, but I ran into it by a fortuitous coincidence, and asked someone to take a group photo with my iPhone.  I think it’s great we have this kind of ecumenical / interfaith communication, and I hope to get more involved in it myself.

Those in attendance were, from left to right (titles like “Rev.” omitted, because I’m not sure who likes which title, or who wants none at all):

  • Art McDonald (First Unitarian Universalist Church, Essex)
  • Ronald Garibaldi (Holy Family R.C. Parish, Gloucester; retired)
  • Deirdre White (Annisquam Village Church)
  • Lehlohonolo Henrietta Montjane (Gloucester and Rockport United Methodist Churches)
  • Bret Hays (St. John’s Episcopal Church, Gloucester)
  • Matthew Green (Holy Family R.C. Parish, Gloucester, parochial vicar)
  • Jesse Fallon (Najramudra Center, Rockport)


  • This is the most uplifting story for the entire year 2011…If only the entire world would use this as a model of interfaith connectedness, perhaps peace would spread. Thanks for the hope!


  • Look at how young y’all look!
    When I picture clergy it’s usually picture of a bunch of 80 year old white guys.

    You have to love that diversity and working together.

    A great role model.

    Hey FG, have you ever posted a link to your homilycast?
    You know I generally have a no politics/no religion policy but posting a link to your homilycast is not so much religion post but a story much like how I picture all the clergy as old white dudes, that the young generation of clergy also embraces new technology and is probably a lot different than the stereotypical clergy.

    Do you think that diversity exists all over the country or is it more here on Cape Ann?

    Oh, and another thing, when did they start letting girls become priests? Is that a relatively new development?

    If you want to share a run down of the interfaith collaborations of what positive things that comes from your meetings for the community at large that would be cool too.

    Just be sure not to get into the whole religion thing, we don’t want any holy wars popping up in here.

    It’s been great having you as part of the GMG team, you’ve opened my eyes to the fact that clergy aren’t all one dimensional solely focused on the “god” thing.

    I find it so interesting that you’re such a tech geek like me and then you got this whole crazy origami thing going on. It’s like you’re Magiver with a piece of paper.

    I’m pretty sure if we went on a cruise to Gilligans Island and shipwrecked that you’d be folding us up some bad-ass motorboat out of paper in minutes flat.

    Keep up the good work!


  • Thanks! Sorry I didn’t answer more completely before. I was cranking out photo posts for the next ten days or so, because I am going on vacation to Florida this Sunday… I’ll send a post or two from Disney, of course, but I wanted to have my bases covered first!

    As for women ministers: according to the official teaching, the Catholic Church’s doctrine doesn’t allow for female priests (although there are people who would disagree on that point and think we could and should ordain women). This can be a thorny issue, and I don’t want to start a debate or go into too much detail. But many other Christian groups with a different theological understanding of the ministerial priesthood do allow women ministers. I don’t know exactly how long ago that started overall, but I know that it’s fairly new. My guess is that in most cases it has only been introduced in the past 40 years or so, although there may be exceptions. Other non-Christian faiths are a different question completely.

    Thanks again for the compliments and for inviting me to contribute to the blog! The team is an amazing group of talented people.


    • And regarding the diversity, it depends a lot on the place. My bet is that big cities and coastal areas have more diversity, whereas more isolated or rural communities would have less, as is more or less true with the general population.


    • Great, thanks for that!

      And enjoy your vacation!

      So .ministers aren’t really priests, right?


      • They are not priests as the Catholic Church understands the term as applied to its own ordained ministers. They can be very effective religious leaders in many ways, including prayer and teaching, but they cannot validly celebrate the sacraments that require priestly character, such as the Eucharist or Reconciliation (aka Confession).

        Sorry for not giving a yes or no answer, but it’s complicated, and even with this long answer I am leaving much unsaid, at the risk of upsetting some people… But this is not a theology blog!


  • Hello Pastor/Clergy – My name is Bill Nieporte, a pastor in Richmond, VA. I hve been searching the web for website/blogs similar to my own clergy blog. I am looking to exchange articles, essays, sermons, studies, and links. I would love it if you could take a visit to and get back with me to exchange backlinks. Feel free to included links to any info on my site. And if you have a blog post you think would be good for your site, please send me the link at I am a real person- with a real site.


  • One area we are exploring, as you, is the benefits of being online. We have a church website and I have my blog. If you would check both out – and perhaps link back to my blog with insights – I would be very appreciated. I have also been looking for the best tools and wordpress plugins and themes to make my blog more appealing.


  • If you recieved an odd post from me earlier, I apologize. I was having PC “issues.” I am a pastor and my ministerial blog is – I am a real person, not a machine – and I have been interested in all things theological. Our church is struggling, like most in this pluralistic/post-church era, to make a difference. One area whenre we are seeking to make a connection is on the itnernet via our church site and ministerial blog. We are looking for ways to make a local connection, have global impact, and become sel-sufficient in the process. That is what put me on a search that landed me on your site. have enjoyed reading your posts. My request is for a linkback to my blog; a candid review of my site’s strengths and weaknesses, and any pluging/themes/or strategies to enjoy the success you seem to be experiencing. Of course, I will be happy to provide a linkback to your site as well. My best email is – I monitor it daily.


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