THE FLORENTINE CONFRATERNITES TODAY
IN HISTORICAL STUDIES GENERALLY, "translation" of past realities into contemporary language often clarifies the character and objectives of the institutions under consideration. In this chapter Neri Capponi reviews the current status of the surviving confraternities in Florence and examines their philanthropic and social-service activities. His analysis of the problems facing this kind of religious association in a secularized social context casts light upon the reasons for the success of lay confraternities in a former age.
NERI CAPPONI lectures in church history and canon law at the University of Florence and is a practicing canon lawyer: advocate of the Holy Poman Pota and of the Apostolic Signatura. Head of a Florentine family prominent since the Middle Ages, Count Capponi is himself a member of several of the confraternities that he discusses here.