The Confraternity of Catholic Clergy: Reminders from a Friend
This past weekend I received the annual resolutions of the Confraternity of Catholic Clergy from their convocation in Chicago. In addition to reminding me of the CCC’s work, this gave me a chance to catch up on the activities of Fr. John Trigilio, the Confraternity’s current President and a long-time friend of Trinity Communications.
The Nature of the Confraternity
The Confraternity of Catholic Clergy is an association of priests and deacons “pledged to the pursuit of personal holiness, loyalty to the Roman Pontiff, commitment to theological study and strict adherence to the authentic teachings of the Magisterium.” The Confraternity seeks to implement the call of Vatican II for ongoing intellectual, spiritual and pastoral formation of the local clergy. In addition to its annual convocation, CCC members meet in local chapters to facilitate this ongoing formation. The CCC also publishes a quarterly newsletter, Sapientia.
Each year, the CCC issues resolutions at its convocation which give a certain moral support to the mission of the Church. This year, five resolutions cover the following topics:
- Support of all bishops who insist that pro-abortion politicians must not receive communion.
- Support of all legislation which protects the life of the unborn and the nature of marriage as a permanent union between a man and a woman.
- Condemnation of the secular media’s use of false notions of separation of Church and state to attack the rights of the Church to preach the Gospel.
- Reaffirmation of the CCC’s consistent denunciation of all forms of child abuse, demand for punishment of all perpetrators, insistence on justice for victims, and condemnation of injustice against those falsely accused and denied due process.
- Resolution of prayers and support for all military personnel and their families in the war on terrorism, and for the innocent victims of violence.
Members of the CCC subscribe to a Credo which reaffirms the special and sacred nature of their ordination; their mission to preach the gospel and administer the sacraments; their devotion to the Eucharist as the “source and summit” of all preaching; their reverence for the teaching and governing office of the Church in the Roman Pontiff; their obedience to their bishops or religious superiors; their solidarity with other priests and deacons; and their call to constant study of “the inexhaustible riches of Christ”.
The Confraternity was established in 1975 by Fr. Robert J. Levis, founder of the former Pontifical Center for Catechetical Studies at Gannon University. Current officers include outstanding priests from Pennsylvania, New York, New Jersey and California. The Executive Committee includes a stellar group of faithful priest scholars. This is a group you can trust.
If you’re not a clergyman, you can subscribe to CCC’s newsletter for $20 per year, but if you’re a priest or deacon you can join the organization (including the newsletter subscription) for just $35. Contact Fr. James Pilsner (email@example.com; 718-351-1093). There is a membership form on the CCC’s (primitive) web site at www.catholic-clergy.org.
Remembering Old Times
Fr. John and Sapientia editor Fr. Kenneth Brighenti are co-authors of the popular Catholicism for Dummies, a book both praised and damned on Amazon for presenting Catholicism according to the Church’s teachings rather than according to the sins and weaknesses of her members. This is recent work, but Fr. John goes way back with Trinity Communications.
When Trinity’s first service of publishing and distributing Catholic books met with financial difficulty around 1990, we gradually reinvented ourselves by experimenting with Catholic online services. In 1993, we launched our first (pre-web) online service, the Catholic Resource Network. Among many resources provided by CRNet, we especially wanted to offer sound spiritual counsel to those in need. Fortunately, among our early membership, two wonderful young priests volunteered to help out – one of them Fr. John Trigilio.
Even Better Now
CRNet was successful enough to merge with EWTN in 1996, where the resources were developed on the EWTN web site and Fr. John continued to provide spiritual counsel. Later, those services which were not carried on by Mother Angelica were developed and improved on PetersNet and its successor, CatholicCulture.org.
Although we have not offered one-on-one online spiritual counseling since those early days, you can still find excellent spiritual advice and direction in person. For this purpose, one of your best bets is any member of the CCC.
Further information about the priesthood and diaconate on CatholicCulture.org:
We have dozens of excellent library items that contain information about the priesthood and the diaconate. Some of them are listed below. For others, perform a keyword search on this site for "priest" or "deacon".
- Vatican II, Decree on the Ministry and Life of Priests (Presbyterorum Ordinis) 1965
- Paul VI, The Celibacy of the Priest (Sacerdotalis Caelibatus) 1967
- John Paul II, I Will Give You Shepherds (Pastorres Dabo Vobis) Apostolic Exhortation, 1992
- Congregation for the Clergy, The Priest, Pastor and Leader of the Parish Community 2002
- Paul VI, Restoring the Permanent Diaconate (Sacrum Diaconatus Ordinem) Apostolic Letter 1967
- Congregation for the Clergy, Directory on the Ministry and Life of Permanent Deacons 1998
- John Paul II, Deacons Serve the Kingdom of God 1993
- John Paul II, The Deacon Has Many Pastoral Functions 1993
- CCC Resolutions for 2004
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