St. Joseph College Seminary offers formation designed to improve vocational awareness and prepare seminarians for entrance into the Theologate. Our young men pursue a Bachelor of Arts degree in philosophy from Belmont Abbey College, while seminary formators provide the human, intellectual, spiritual, and pastoral resources they will need as priests.
Preparing Good and Holy Priests Starts with a Solid Formation
Human Formation is the foundation of priestly formation, ensuring that each seminarian becomes a mature and balanced man who can relate well to others, bear the weight of pastoral responsibilities, and live a celibate life in a fruitful manner. The affective maturity required for the priest is realized in the development of the human virtues.
Spiritual Formation guides the seminarian in learning to live in intimate communion with God, to seek Christ in faithful meditation on scripture, to participate in the sacred mysteries of the Church, and to love and revere the Blessed Virgin Mary. The sanctity required for the priest is realized in the flourishing of the theological virtues.
Intellectual Formation is an integral part of discipleship. A seminarian devotes himself to the study of philosophy in preparation for the study of theology, which will be pursued in greater depth in Theologate or major seminary. The intellectual rigor required for the priest is realized at this stage in the development of natural wisdom.
Pastoral Formation helps the seminarian evolve into a shepherd imbued with the charity of Christ. Virtues gained through discipline, education, and sacrifice conform the will and build the pastoral competence to love and serve those in need. The generous heart required of a priest is exercised as a man sacrifices his will in love for others.