North American Friends of the
Venerable English College (NAFVEC)

The Venerable English College in Rome has been preparing men for Catholic priestly ministry in England & Wales since 1579. It is the oldest British institution outside the United Kingdom.

North American Friends of the Venerable English College was established in 2020 to promote awareness of the “Venerabile” and the history of the College and its Martyrs. It is committed to fostering material and spiritual support for the VEC as a unique Catholic institution and seminary housing an exceptional archival collection.

Will you help us?

How to make a gift

The Seminary

Located at the heart of the Church in the Eternal City of Rome, the VEC prepares men for the Catholic diocesan priesthood. The seminary was co-founded in 1579 by Pope Gregory XIII and William (soon to be Cardinal) Allen to form priests for the perilous English and Welsh Mission. Between 1581 and 1679, 44 former students were martyred for the Faith, among them 10 who were canonized in 1970.

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The Heritage Collections

The Heritage Collections and Archives of the Venerable English College record more than 650 years of history. The documents in the Archives constitute the oldest British archival collection outside Britain. There are numerous documents in the VEC’s North American Collection regarding the early history of the dioceses of Baltimore, Philadelphia, and Québec.

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Securing our Future,

Preserving our Past

The Venerable English College receives no independent source of income or funding from the Holy See, UK government or Church hierarchy. Apart from diocesan contributions for the training of seminarians, the College depends on generous donations and philanthropic support to cover its operating budget and for the preservation of its Heritage Collections.

There are many reasons to consider supporting the “Venerabile”:

ensure the future of the College and its ability to form clergy for England, Wales and beyond
invest in a new generation of priests, young men determined to be good and holy disciples
foster a noble and heroic missionary tradition that reaches back almost 450 years
secure an unbroken link between Rome and Catholic England and Wales that has endured since Saxon times
protect a one-of-a-kind collection of archives and religious items and bring them to a wider audience
preserve and promote the memory of 44 martyrs for the Faith.