Saturday, October 11, 2008

St. John Vianney Seminary is th nation's largest Catholic seminary

We're No. 1

St. John Vianney Seminary in St. Paul is now the nation's largest Roman Catholic seminary.

The school, housed on the campus of the University of St. Thomas, has an enrollment of 154, nearly twice the number of just seven years ago. Its nearest competitor, Pontifical College in Ohio, has 119 seminarians.

The Rev. William Baer, the seminary's rector, attributes the growth spurt to several factors, beginning with the school's objective.

"We're focused on a strong leadership format," he said. "We're not training people to be monks. We're not training people to be academicians. We're training them to be future leaders of organizations, some of them very large organizations."

Baer, who has been at the seminary for 10 years, said that success builds upon success. "People look for results. As our graduates go out and are successful, people realize that we are offering a quality program."

There is another factor that he says people have been slow to pick up on. "One of the biggest unreported stories is that there is rising interest in the priesthood among young men," he said. "There have been a lot of stories about the shortage of priests, and that's certainly very real. But we're also seeing a new wave of young men coming forward from traditional Catholic families." StarTribune

aint John Vianney College Seminary has a clear mission - to provide basic training today for tomorrow's Catholic priests. We pursue this mission through the first-class academic resources of the University of Saint Thomas, through a systematic formation in Christian character, and through a traditional Catholic program of spiritual growth. We are Catholic, and proud of it!

At Saint John Vianney and the University of Saint Thomas, 152 seminarians are gaining an outstanding foundation in Philosophy and Theology. A four-year program of spiritual conferences and individual spiritual direction help seminarians grow strong in their Catholic faith and vocational discernment.

A great Seminary. A great University.

Saint John Vianney College Seminary is located on the campus of the University of Saint Thomas, near the banks of the Mississippi River in Saint Paul, Minnesota.

Since our founding in 1968, 340 Vianney alumni have been ordained to the Catholic priesthood.

However, seminarians don't need to be sure about priesthood to enter seminary. They only need to be sure about devoting their gifts and energy to God's will for their future.

And they have a great time doing it! Intramural sports. Service projects. Extracurricular activities with other students on campus, together with the educational and financial aid resources of the University of Saint Thomas. They receive a full college and seminary experience at Vianney.

More than twenty-five Catholic dioceses and archdiocese from throughout the United State send their college seminarians to Saint John Vianney. They have come to trust our academic rigor, our sound formation program, and our faithfulness to the teachings of the Church. You will have the privilege of growing closer to Jesus Christ through daily Mass, Eucharistic Adoration, retreats, and personal prayer.
Who is St. John Vianney, also known as the Cure' of Ars


Fr. Andrew said...

This alum rejoices in their fidelity!

Anonymous said...

Encouraging Article. Hope we are careful not to turn out parochial MBA's, however. We so desperately need holy priests that can compose and deliver a brief, cogent sermon and offer a beautiful, reverent, and correct Holy Sacrifice of the Mass. Unless we have this, Fr Baer, things will not change, they will only worsen.


Anonymous said...

Thanks, William. Yes, I couldn't agree with you more. The Strib reporter was eager to post a positive account of the Seminary and current vocation trends, but the abbreviated quotations included in the short article left out some crucial comments, including, as you noted, the necessity for a sound spiritual and sacramental formation at the core of a Catholic Seminarian's training.
-- Fr. Baer

Anonymous said...

Given the very liberal atmosphere and teaching at St. Thomas, I cringe thinking of seminarians attending classes there. I pray that they turn out to be good, holy priests.

Fr. Andrew said...

Anonymous, I doubt you are still following this, but take heart and don't throw UST under the heretical bus so quickly. Do you have first hand experience of the faculty at UST? I do. The professors in the Catholic Studies Department are excellent, engaging, and, most important, men and women of faith.