What is a Seminary

It is a religious house of formation where ones lives and studies while pursuing formation for life as a priest.

I'm thinking about going to the seminary, what should I do next?

Most importantly, keep praying about your vocation. Then speak to your parish priest who will assist you in contacting the vocation director to set up an appointment.? ?

If I enter the seminary, am I committing to the priesthood?

What if I am still uncertain? Your time in the seminary is specifically meant to help you listen and further discern the will of God. Entering the seminary does require a certain level of commitment, but no seminary would expect you to be completely secure in your calling.

How do I know for sure that I should enter the seminary?

Honestly, I do not know if we are ever sure when to enter the seminary. It is something that should be done after serious prayer and discussion with your family, pastor and vocation director. Then, just go for it. Do not be afraid! You have nothing to lose but everything to gain!

How long will it take to become a priest?

If you have a degree with a minor in philosophy it will take five years in seminary formation. This includes a one year pastoral internship in a parish here in the archdiocese. If you have a degree but no philosophical studies completed it usually means at least one extra year in the seminary. Your philosophical studies must be completed before you begin theological studies. If you do not after any post secondary education the seminary process can be between 8 or 9 years. If you are entering later in life after several years in the workforce the archdiocesan vocation committee with the Archbishop will make a decision about the formation process on an individual basis.

What will seminary life be like?

The seminary is an incredible opportunity to focus on listening to the voice of God speaking within and to heed that voice by becoming more of the man God created you to be. There are four main pillars to seminary formation: spiritual, intellectual, human and pastoral. All of these aspects come together to make up what it means to be a priest.

Life in the seminary is a community based life, you have your own room but you live in community with common living spaces such as bathrooms, TV rooms, lounges and dinning area’s etc. In some seminaries your academic classes are in house and in other seminaries classes are outside the seminary else where on a University campus.

Seminary life is most certainly a life of prayer, consisting of regular celebration of the Liturgy of the hours most notably morning and evening prayer and daily celebration of the Eucharistic. While in the seminary each seminarian is assigned a spiritual director.

Vocations Office

Vocations Office

Pastoral Centre 

Suite 402, 33 Pippy Place

St. John's, NL

A1B 3X2

T: 709 726 3660


Fr. James Fleming

T: 709 834-9481