The National Federation of Priests’ Councils serves the communion, brotherhood and solidarity of bishops, presbyterates and priests
- We gather bishops, presbyterates and priests for communion, brotherhood and solidarity.
- We build bridges.
- We provide models for communion, brotherhood and solidarity.
- We affirm each other in the shared priesthood of Jesus Christ.
- We are solution-focused.
NFPC was established in 1968 as the first national organization dealing with the lives and ministry of priests. Representatives from the Vatican II mandated, newly formed priests’ councils met in Chicago with a desire to share thoughts and best practices, and invited all other councils to join them, forming the National Federation of Priests’ Councils. NFPC works through priests’ councils to support and connect the brotherhood of priests throughout the entire U.S.
NFPC has been at work making a positive difference since its establishment. Many of the services in place today that affect bishops and priests in their lives and work are present because of the prompting, sharing of resources, and advocacy of NFPC, including: due process, priest personnel assignment, a code of professional ministerial accountability, research on priestly life and ministry, continuing education, salary compensation, tax and retirement information, plus much more.
Several organizations have come into being as off-shoots of the National Federation of Priests’ Councils, the two most prominent being the National Association for Church Personnel Administrators (NACPA) and the National Organization for Continuing Education of Roman Catholic Clergy (NOCERCC).
According to the NFPC Constitution, all arch/diocesan priests’ councils representing the priests of the local church are members of NFPC. A council which supports NFPC financially is considered an active member council. A council which does not is considered an inactive member council. Just as in local parishes where a proportionately small number of dedicated members contribute financially, so does NFPC rely on financial support from its active members to be able to continue to serve the entire U.S. presbyterate. Membership in NFPC is not a ‘goods or services’ consumeristic approach. Active membership in NFPC supports the overall mission of the organization and keeps the services and connection offered by NFPC alive and effective. Active membership in NFPC is an investment in the strengthening of the Catholic presbyterate in the United States.
Support and Connection:
To reach our overall goal of the communion, brotherhood and solidarity of all U.S. bishops and priests, NFPC provides this specific assistance:
- Advocacy to the USCCB for priests’ issues and needs as a contributing member on the Committee for Clergy, Consecrated Life and Vocations
- Research on the presbyterate for the presbyterate: longitudinal studies of priests, plus, compensation statistics, and a yearly income tax guide for clergy
- Annual National Convocation of Priests – top level speakers, prayer, learning, idea exchange, and relaxation time, bringing together priests and bishops from across the U.S.
- National clearinghouse for research assistance, questions about other arch/diocesan services and programs, speaker recommendations, and other requests
- Council Notes – priests’ councils’ minutes edited, (no personal or private information), allowing connection for ideas, resources, and solutions to common concerns
- Four quality programs for growth: Priests and Bishops in Council, Priest Personnel Board Review, Catholic Leadership 360°, Tax and Retirement
- A weekly Catholic news and information e-letter, NFPC This Week
- Touchstone periodical, mailed to every U.S. priest, especially to serve and connect priests who do not regularly access the Internet
- Priest-Labor Initiative – bishops and priests, committed to standing with and advocating for workers, especially the most vulnerable
NFPC is always open to requests from priests or bishops with recommendations for additional services to better support or connect the U.S. presbyterate.
With the help of many supportive dioceses, NFPC has served presbyterates across the U.S. for over fifty years, providing priests a national organization to speak their concerns, to represent their needs and interests in multiple forums, to develop resources for their pastoral use, to link their ministry with other key ministries in the church and to maintain a crosscurrent of communication essential to the life and work of bishops and priests today. With prayer and continued support, NFPC is ready to proceed in this service to all priests, bishops, and presbyterates, so together all can celebrate and more fully live the shared priesthood of Jesus Christ. More information is available at nfpc.org.