U.S. Navy Chaplain for 20 Years Named Spiritual Leader of Lindenhurst Parish

ROCKVILLE CENTRE, NEW YORK, June 29, 2007—The Most Reverend William Murphy, Bishop, Diocese of Rockville Centre, appointed Father Anthony M. Trapani pastor of Our Lady of Perpetual Help parish, Lindenhurst, N.Y., effective June 27, 2007.

“It’s going to be an exciting experience,” Father Trapani said. “This is where it all begins. My hope is to bring people back to Church because this is where they belong.”

Born in Brooklyn, N.Y., Father Trapani attended Mount St. Paul College, Waukesha, Wis. and earned a bachelor’s degree in philosophy at the Holy Apostles Seminary College, Cromwell, Conn.

Ordained a priest for the Diocese of Rockville Centre on May 26, 1973, Father Trapani’s first assignment was as associate pastor of St. Bernard parish, Levittown, N.Y., followed by St. Martha parish, Uniondale, N.Y. and St. Rose of Lima parish, Massapequa, N.Y.

He served as a Navy Reserve chaplain from 1984 to 1987, when he became an active duty chaplain. His assignments for the next 20 years included Europe; Northern Africa; Arlington National Cemetery, Arlington, Va.; Naval Education and Training Center, Newport, R.I.; Va. as grand chaplain of amphibious ships; Fleet Hospital 8, Spain; Naval Hospital Bremerton, Bremerton, Wash.; and Naval Submarine Base, Groton, Conn.

Father Trapani said the five months he spent at the Fleet Hospital were the most intense. Of the 1800 patients there at the time, about 25 to 35 percent showed red flag symptoms of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder.

“I was trying to console people who had to deal with the intensity of a war,” he said. “The most important concern they have is ‘Does God still love me?’ No one comes back unaffected.”

Serving as a Navy chaplain has given him a broader perspective on the Church, Father Trapani said.

”Young people are in desperate need of faith and something to believe in,” he said. “My hope is to be able to inspire people to take on a greater share.

“I’m at the front end of the need that’s out there for the faith to be more dynamic,” he continued. “I know the things that are important and the things that are not important.”

Editor’s Note: Photo Courtesy of The Long Island Catholic/Greg Shemitz

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About The Diocese of Rockville Centre
Celebrating its Golden Jubilee, the Diocese of Rockville Centre (www.drvc.org) was formed in 1957 and covers 1,198 square miles in Nassau and Suffolk Counties. The diocese serves approximately 1.4 million Catholics (total population in both counties is approximately 2.8 million). There are 134 parishes in 115 towns. Last year over 18,000 baptisms, 18,000 confirmations, 19,000 first communions and 4,000 marriages took place in the diocese. There are approximately 22,000 students in Catholic elementary schools; 13,000 in secondary schools and 3,300 in higher institutions. There are 69 Catholic elementary and high schools and one Catholic college in the diocese. There are also 120,189 total students in religious education. Catholic Health Services of Long Island consists of five hospitals, three nursing homes, a community-based home for those with special needs and a hospice. Last year, Catholic Charities assisted more than 59,000 individuals who are poor, vulnerable and disadvantaged on Long Island. (4/20/07)

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