ASPECTS OF THE FORMATION

“He now went up onto the mountain and summoned those he wanted. So they came to him and he appointed twelve; they were to be his companions and to be sent out to proclaim the message, with power to drive out devils.”

Mark 3, 13-14

A TRAINING IN EXCELLENCE

Teaching at the International Seminary of Ars is guided by the Roman document Ratio Studiorum, which sets the format of the formation of future priests. The Seminary endeavours to develop the four aspects of the training (here under) to assist each Seminarist to prepare himself for priesthood in the best possible manner. The formation is also thoroughly influenced by the specificity brought in by the SJMV. We ensure that seminarists do not lose sight of Saint John Mary Vianney’s ideals and for them to become eager missionaries working for the salvation of the world. To that effect, the SJMV believes in the further strength provided by fraternal life. It is an integral part of the formation, led by the central role played by prayer. The formation of the preparatory year (propaedeutic) particularly insists on the value of prayer as a powerful ‘tool’ to put Christ at the heart of the students life. Progressively, the student familiarises himself with pastoral life which is the ultimate aim of the ‘nursery’ that is the Seminary.

Training diocesan

priests according to

the objectives and

directives of the Church

 

ASPECTS OF THE FORMATION

Teaching at the International Seminary of Ars is guided by the Roman document Ratio Studiorum, which sets the format of the formation of future priests. The Seminary endeavours to develop the four aspects of the training (here under) to assist each Seminarist to prepare himself for priesthood in the best possible manner. The formation is also thoroughly influenced by the specificity brought in by the SJMV. We ensure that seminarists do not lose sight of Saint John Mary Vianney’s ideals and for them to become eager missionaries working for the salvation of the world. To that effect, the SJMV believes in the further strength provided by fraternal life. It is an integral part of the formation, led by the central role played by prayer. The formation of the preparatory year (propaedeutic) particularly insists on the value of prayer as a powerful ‘tool’ to put Christ at the heart of the students life. Progressively, the student familiarises himself with pastoral life which is the ultimate aim of the ‘nursery’ that is the Seminary.

Intellectual formation

The overall mission of the priest is to announce the Good News. It implies an insider knowledge a deepening of the faith. Directly related to spiritual life, intellectual work is an important aspect of the priest’s formation. Seminarians are constantly stimulated and accompanied in order to reach the best of themselves and make them fully aware of their own ability. They have to be absolutely proficient to announce the liberating Truth to all men. Philosophy, study of the Bible, theology and many other disciplines (spirituality, ethics, liturgy, history, other religions…) are all taught to structure the development of a well informed personal faith, in line with the accepted recommendations of Vatican II.

Spiritual formation

Disciples asked Jesus “Lord, teach us how to pray”. The early years at the Seminary, and the preparatory year (propaedeutic), in particular, offer a genuine initiation for private and liturgical prayer, the foundation stone of a whole life given to the Lord. Prayer becomes more meaningful as years go by, leading to a richer and more authentic interiority. The call of the Lord can be properly understood and acted upon through love.

Formation of new human being

To save the world, God became man in Jesus Christ. It is indeed with his entire human skills that a priest is called to exercise his ministry. It is of the utmost importance that he acquires a harmonious and steady personality, opened to all other fellow human beings. He will then, more readily, enter in celibacy, solely focused on his ministry. Life in a community is to that effect, an essential part of the formation. The Seminary is a large family. In the spirit of the SJMV seminarians are organised in small units (fraternities) of 6 to 8 members, each of them supervised by a priest. Each unit is articulated around prayer debate and exchange, practical household duties but most of all, experience living as brothers. Relaxing activities and sport also have their place.

PASTORAL FORMATION

The ultimate purpose of the Seminary is to form shepherds, dedicated to following Christ and offer their whole life for the mission. This rests on an ardent desire to announce and propagate the Gospel, a genuine love of God and Mankind to serve the pressing spiritual needs of our times. Saint John Mary Vianney loved to, say: “Priesthood is the love of Jesus heart!” Pastoral formation is done progressively and in many different ways : a presence at parish level, religious instruction, apostolic activities during holidays, an opening to, the many realities of the Church’s life…

SPIRITUAL FORMATION

Disciples asked Jesus “Lord, teach us how to pray”. The early years at the Seminary, and the preparatory year (propaedeutic), in particular, offer a genuine initiation for private and liturgical prayer, the foundation stone of a whole life given to the Lord. Prayer becomes more meaningful as years go by, leading to a richer and more authentic interiority. The call of the Lord can be properly understood and acted upon through love.

PASTORAL FORMATION

The ultimate purpose of the Seminary is to form shepherds, dedicated to following Christ and offer their whole life for the mission. This rests on an ardent desire to announce and propagate the Gospel, a genuine love of God and Mankind to serve the pressing spiritual needs of our times. Saint John Mary Vianney loved to, say : “Priesthood is the love of Jesus heart!” Pastoral formation is done progressively and in many different ways : a presence at parish level, religious instruction, apostolic activities during holidays, an opening to, the many realities of the Church’s life…

INTELLECTUAL FORMATION

The overall mission of the priest is to announce the Good News. It implies an insider knowledge a deepening of the faith. Directly related to spiritual life, intellectual work is an important aspect of the priest’s formation. Seminarians are constantly stimulated and accompanied in order to reach the best of themselves and make them fully aware of their own ability. They have to be absolutely proficient to announce the liberating Truth to all men. Philosophy, study of the Bible, theology and many other disciplines (spirituality, ethics, liturgy, history, other religions…) are all taught to structure the development of a well informed personal faith, in line with the accepted recommendations of Vatican II.

FORMATION OF A NEW HUMAN BEING

To save the world, God became man in Jesus Christ. It is indeed with his entire human skills that a priest is called to exercise his ministry. It is of the utmost importance that he acquires a harmonious and steady personality, opened to all other fellow human beings. He will then, more readily, enter in celibacy, solely focused on his ministry. Life in a community is to that effect, an essential part of the formation. The Seminary is a large family. In the spirit of the SJMV seminarians are organised in small units (fraternities) of 6 to 8 members, each of them supervised by a priest. Each unit is articulated around prayer debate and exchange, practical household duties but most of all, experience living as brothers. Relaxing activities and sport also have their place.

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