Friday, September 16, 2011

NO NEED TO REINVENT THE WHEEL: Confraternity of Catholic Clergy Goes Global to Support Parish Priests and Deacons

HARRISBURG, Penn., Sept. 16, 2011 /Christian Newswire/ — Responding to the announcement of new priest councils being formed, the Confraternity of Catholic Clergy (USA & Canada) sent a letter to Archbishop Timothy Dolan, President of the USCCB, stating that it has been around since 1975 and is united with the Australian CCC and the British CCC (UK) to form an INTERNATIONAL association of priests AND DEACONS. Members are NOT seeking the repeal of the discipline of celibacy for priests in the Latin Rite NOR do they want any change in doctrine (such as allowing women to be ordained).

These ordained men merely want to be better servants by promoting ongoing spiritual, theological and pastoral formation among themselves in a fraternal setting and context, under the maternal care of the Blessed Virgin Mary as Queen of the Clergy and Mother of Priests.

Fidelity to the Magisterium, obedience to the Roman Pontiff and reverent in the celebration of the Sacred Liturgy, the Confraternity of Catholic Clergy seeks to fulfill the mandate of the Second Vatican Council (PO, #8) to support their brothers in ordained ministry so to better serve the spiritual needs of the people entrusted to their pastoral care.

Associations of priests and deacons are encouraged by Pastores Dabo Vobis and the Directory on the Ministry and Life of Priests as well as canon law. The purpose of these is not to be in competition with the hierarchy or laity. Groups of clergy are meant to support one another as ordained brothers and to encourage each other to be faithful, loyal sons of the Church.

Therefore, the Confraternity enthusiastically welcomes the 3rd Edition of the Roman Missal in English and promises to faithfully follow the rubrics while celebrating Holy Mass with proper reverence and devotion. The CCC is totally committed to preserving patrimony while implementing the adaptations our leaders (the Pope and Bishops). Through monthly local gatherings clergy pray in common before the Blessed Sacrament and avail themselves of spiritual direction, confession and sacerdotal fraternity, hence ongoing formation is achieved. Annual conferences and retreats and quinquennial pilgrimages to Rome (joining the ACCC and BCCC) complete the program.

Open to any priest, deacon or seminarian in good standing of the Latin or Eastern Rite Catholic Churches, the CCC is one means to promote fraternity and fidelity while fostering a desire for holiness in themselves and in their people is what the CCC is all about.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Archbishop Pietro Sambi



ARCHBISHOP PIETRO SAMBI was remembered yesterday at a Memorial Mass celebrated at the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception, Washington, DC.  Archbishop Timothy Dolan of New York was the Main Celebrant and Homilist.  Several American Cardinals attended (their Eminences DiNardo, Rigali, Keeler, Mahoney, Baum and George)  Providentially, it was the feast of the Finding and Exaltation of the Holy Cross of Jesus.

Archbishop Dolan captured the spirit of the Apostolic Nuncio (alias Papal Ambassador to the United States).  His Grace mentioned their first public encounter at a Bishop's installation. Archbishop Sambi discreetly asked Archbishop Dolan if the custom in America is for bishops to wear their pectoral cross on the outside or inside of the Mass vestments (chasuble).  Dolan said that the bishops would most likely follow the lead of the Nuncio and so everyone waited to see what he would do. He, on the other hand, said he would leave it out, for awhile, then put it back inside and vice a versa, just to see the reaction of the other prelates.  "Whether on the inside or outside, what really matters is that the cross rests over the heart of the bishop."

Several years later the Nuncio spoke to the Confraternity of Catholic Clergy when it had its annual meeting (at that time in DC at the Pope John Paul II Cultural Center).  Shortley after Pope Benedict XVI's visit to the USA, I celebrated my 20th anniversary of priesthood (May 14, 2008).  Msgr. Walter Rossi was kind enough to allow me the honor of being celebrant at a Mass of Thanksgiving at the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception. Before the Mass, I brought my mother to the Apostolic Nunciature to see Archbishop Sambi.  He gave her a half hour tour and then treated us to Italian cookies and espresso.  During the visit, he gave my mom a blessed rosary from the Holy Father. She then asked him if he had another one to give a young man who recently was diagnosed with eye cancer. The man was in his early thirties and had small children.  My mom got flustered however, when she could not recall his name.  Almost in tears, she apologized to the Nuncio.  Archbishop Sambi told her "that's OK Mrs. Trigilio, I do not need to know his name to pray for him. The Good Lord knows everything and everyone.  He will know who needs the grace for recovery of eyesight. Trust in Him"

That simple but profound wisdom made my mom feel much better.  It was vintage Sambi.  He spoke volumes with just a phrase or two.

Eternal Rest Grant Unto Him O Lord, and Let Perpetual Light Shine Upon Him
May He Rest in Peace.

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