Formation

As noted in our Mission Statement, Saint Joseph’s Seminary and College exists for the formation of candidates for the priesthood of the Catholic Church. Our primary responsibility, therefore, is to attend to the human, spiritual, intellectual, and pastoral formation of our seminarians - the four pillars of priestly formation outlined by Pope John Paul II in Pastores Dabo Vobis and mandated by the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops in the Program of Priestly Formation.

 

Saint Joseph’s Seminary offers its students a comprehensive program of priestly formation which integrates these four pillars. Our goal is to form each seminarian to be a priest “who understands his spiritual development within the greater context of his call to service, his human development within the greater context of his call to advance the mission of the Church, his intellectual development as the appropriation of the Church’s teaching and tradition, and his pastoral formation as participation in the active ministry of the Church” (P.P.F., 71).

 

By integrating these four areas, the Seminary prepares seminarians for the three-fold office of Jesus Christ: proclaiming the Gospel, celebrating the sacraments and shepherding God’s people.

 

The time at Saint Joseph’s Seminary consists of eight semesters of study with concentration on theology and allied disciplines. Our academic program is broadly classical in scope and tradition, humanistic in approach, and scientific in method.

 

After six semesters, students are eligible for the degrees of Master of Divinity and Bachelor of Sacred Theology from the University of Saint Thomas Aquinas in Rome. Qualified students may apply for the degree of Master of Arts (Theology) during their fourth year.

 

At the end of six semesters of professional study and priestly formation, the seminarians are evaluated by the Rector and the Resident Priests Advisory Board in order to be presented as worthy for ordination to the Order of Deacon.

Students are considered for ordination for the Priesthood at the end of fourth year.

Pillars of Formation

  • Human Formation
  • Spiritual Formation
  • Intellectual Formation
  • Pastoral Formation

Human Formation, which is centered on Jesus Christ, true God and true man, is the necessary foundation of all priestly formation and every priest “should mold his human personality in such a way that it becomes a bridge and not an obstacle for others in their meeting with Jesus Christ the Redeemer of humanity” (Pastores Dabo Vobis, 43).

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The goal of the Spiritual Formation Program is to form future priests to be men who continually work to establish an intimate relationship with God the Father in Jesus Christ His Son through the Holy Spirit.

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The goal of the Intellectual Formation Program is, according to the Seminary’s Mission Statement, to form future priests “who are able to share in the three-fold office of Christ: teaching the Gospel, celebrating the divine mysteries and shepherding God’s people.”

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Pastoral Formation serves as the effective culmination of the entire process of priestly formation. As John Paul II noted in Pastores Dabo Vobis, “the whole formation imparted to candidates for the priesthood aims at preparing them to enter into communion with the charity of Christ the Good Shepherd. Hence, their formation in its different aspects must have a fundamentally pastoral character” (Pastores Dabo Vobis, 57).

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Contact Us

St. Joseph's Seminary
St. Joseph's Seminary
201 Seminary Ave.
Yonkers, NY 10704
P: (914) 968-6200
F: (914) 376-2019
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