Building Priestly Unity & Fraternity

This popular and compelling theme is at the heart of the clergy convocations and assemblies offered by the Spitzer Center.

Ongoing formation of priests and deacons solidly grounded in Catholic tradition, the best of Positive Psychology, and contemporary leadership insights.

The Spitzer Center has developed a process for presbyterates that builds priestly brotherhood, respect, and unity.

We address the significant challenges that tax the time, mental, and physical resources of our priests.

Our priests seek the support of their brother priests in dealing with these challenges.

Whether it’s a clergy convocation, deanery seminar, or individual diagnostics, we strive to deliver a substantive experience that is lively and enjoyable, personally beneficial, and pastorally relevant.

Our 3-Phase Process for Building Priestly Fraternity & Brotherhood

Bishop James V Johnston on services we provided to his diocese of Kansas City-St Joseph.

Archbishop Joseph Kurtz, Archdiocese of Louisville, comments about a Spitzer Center Presentation at a recent clergy assembly.

Some of the things priests are saying about our program

“The greatest value was allowing us to discuss important topics with one another. If only we had more opportunities like this.”
“The discussion was very animated and sincere. I think this will be a great help for our presbyterate.”
“I think it was very helpful to be able to work together to create concrete suggestions for improving our presbyterate.”
“The sharing among brother priests was of good quality.”
“This is the first time since my ordination that something like this was offered! Great job! Now it’s up to us.”
“Great Session!”

Dioceses we have worked with

The human heart desires joy. We all desire joy, every family, every people aspires to happiness.

– Pope Francis

The Four Levels of Happiness

The Four Levels of Happiness® education helps priests better understand the four drivers of all human behavior and habits, and ultimately their impact on the culture of the entire presbyterate.

The foundation of the entire Spitzer Center curriculum is also foundational to human nature – namely, our universal desire for happiness. This notion of The Four Levels of Happiness® was articulated by Fr. Robert Spitzer, through his study of the collective insights of more than 130 prominent theologians, philosophers, psychologists, and authors over two millennia.

The Four Levels of Happiness® seminar has been enthusiastically received by hundreds of priests and deacons across the country. A combination of education and inspiration, the offering is perfect for a clergy convocation, priest assembly, or education days.

Featuring Fr. Spitzer in short video bursts, the professional delivery is interspersed with entertaining movie clips, discussion, and windows for personal reflection.

See some of our handouts:

Most Reverend James V. Johnston, Jr., Bishop of Springfield-Cape Girardeau
“Thank you again for the outstanding workshop that you provided for all of our diocesan priests. The reaction that I received was extremely positive.”
Most Reverend James S. Wall, Bishop of the Diocese of Gallup
“I find myself continually going back to Fr. Spitzer concepts on the Four Levels of Happiness. It helps me to check my motivations and to direct others and hopefully to give them motivation in their actions.”
Priest Participant
“Excellent – One of the best seminars I have experienced in my priesthood”

The Presbyteral Culture Inventory

“I think it was a home run.  A game changer if we truly commit.” 
– Priest Participant

The Presbyteral Culture Inventory (PCI) is a unique tool that helps priests identify, discuss and better achieve their ideal priestly culture, along with enhancing communication with their bishop.

The inventory measures and ranks 19 values that impact areas like collaboration, trust and communication. The presbyterate discusses the findings and votes on practical action steps to move toward their ideal culture.

It is all a well structured process, and then reinforced with a 12-18 month follow-up.

Read our Presbyteral Culture Inventory Overview:

What priests are looking for in an ideal presbyteral culture:

Brotherhood with a shared mission
Respect and genuine fraternal care for each other
The confidence to count on each other as brothers
Unity around the Bishop, prioritizing time together, and making time for each other and the Bishop

Culture Action Plan & Followup

To assist in the ongoing effort to enrich your presbyteral culture, we host quarterly conference calls to share best practices, answer questions, and assess goal keeping. Then, in 12-18 months we offer an option to re-measure the state of the culture to assess progress.

We also offer three additional tools to complement your culture action plans:

  • Confidence & Providence Series
  • Leadership Impact
  • Character Foundations Assessment

These tools are not only helpful for priests, but can be valuable for chancery staffs and church leadership in general.

Confidence & Providence Series

This 1.5 day facilitated series equips  Church workers to increase their self confidence and faith in Divine Providence.

Fr. Spitzer presents insights and practical techniques to expand comfort zones and overcome self limiting beliefs.

Church Leader Participant
I love the spirituality that comes from this seminar. It is wonderful to focus on the Kingdom of God as our mission and purpose. I am inspired by Fr. Spitzer

Leadership Impact

This 360 assessment is ideal for priests with substantial executive responsibilities (eg. Vicar General/Moderator of the Curia, school president, etc.).

Numerous bishops have benefited from the findings  and confidential, professional debriefs.

Bishop Participant
“The insights into my leadership style were extremely helpful to me, along with the personal coaching”

Character Foundations Assessment

The CFA measures five areas of character strength and 22 particular virtues.  It provides insight for self knowledge and a blueprint for personal growth.

Priest Participant
“The CFA really confirmed what I knew about myself and gave me fresh insights and encouragement.”

Contact the Spitzer Center

Schedule a 20 minute overview of the Four Levels of Happiness, or a short presbyteral culture overview.

(734) 677-7770
24 Frank Lloyd Wright Drive,
P.O. Box 411
Ann Arbor, Michigan 48106
Email Us
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