Formation Program
Pillar I: Human Formation
Pillar II: Spiritual Formation
Pillar III: Intellectual Formation
Pillar IV: Pastoral Formation
The Formation Schedule
Special Formation Programs
The Pre-Theology Program


Overview: The seminary community plays a significant role in the growth of seminarians toward the priesthood. The give-and-take between those who share the same vocational goals provides mutual support and promotes increased tolerance while allowing fraternal correction to take place. Community life affords the opportunity for the development of leadership skills and individual talents. It can also motivate seminarians to develop a sense of self-sacrifice and a spirit of collaboration. The seminar­ians and the formation faculty form the center of the seminary community. This center needs careful cultivation so that the distinctive aims of seminary formation are achieved.

Diocesan Residence: Diocesan seminarians reside in Leander Hall and the Elizabeth J. Roderick Center and each one is a member of the Resident Forum. The Forum promotes the welfare of diocesan community life and its elected officers keep the administration aware of student needs. The Diocesan Community Life Handbook provides the Rule of Life and outlines the rights and responsibilities of diocesan students.

Monastic Residence: Benedictine monks and other religious seminarians who pursue theological studies in the Seminary reside in the monastery. As such, their human and spiritual formation follows the Saint Vincent Arch­abbey Formation Handbook. Academic and pastoral formation for monastic seminarians is primarily the concern of the Seminary. Junior monks from monasteries other than Saint Vincent, and seminarians from other orders also study theology in the Seminary and continue their monastic formation in the monastery. Religious seminarians in final vows are accountable to the Director of Solemnly Professed Religious Seminarians and those in temporary vows to the Junior Master.


Priestly Identity:

Discernment: Saint Vincent Seminary’s priestly formation program presumes that students who enter have mani­fested already clear and positive signs of a priestly vocation. We understand that dioceses and reli­gious orders entrust their priesthood candidates to the Seminary so that this vocational choice may be tested, nourished, and guided. The Saint Vincent Seminary Priestly Formation Program will test a seminarian’s vocation by engaging the candidate in an ever more complete and penetrating self-knowledge as he continues to listen and respond to God’s call. Nurturing his vocation will clarify and reinforce his original call, as he comes to a deeper understanding of the direction of his own vocation. As each seminarian deepens his relationship with Jesus Christ and better realizes his own gifts, as well as the demands of ministry in the Church, he will grow in his priestly identity. By deepening his relationships with Christ and the Church, he will grow into the priest that God and the Church calls him to be; personally, spiritually, pastorally, and intellectually.

Evaluation: The Program of Priestly Formation commissions seminaries to evaluate whether or not the candidates possess sufficient intelligence, personal maturity, interpersonal skills, common sense, moral charac­ter, and aptitude for ministry to continue in the Seminary program and to be ordained to the priesthood. This the Seminary does throughout the year, by way of numerous avenues, but most formally in the annual evaluation process, which the Director of Human Formation administers in support and as an integral part of the Seminary’s priestly formation program. The annual evaluation considers a priesthood candidate from the four pillars of formation


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