News in today’s Irish Catholic indicates that the National Seminary is making moves to separate the seminarians from the main college population and have the Seminarians seen as different from other students studying at the college, this is so seminarians will have a time and the space to discern their vocation. reportedly this was recommended by the Apostolic Visitation as attempt to ‘reform’ training structures for priests in Ireland.
But will a few doors make a difference or possibly a separate dining area, the truth is it doesn’t seem to have hit the reforms that are needed. Yes this is a start but to do this you would have to have separate lectures for Seminarians and this is impossible especially that St Patrick’s don’t have a philosophy Department of its own and Seminarians shares their campus with over 7 thousand other students it just seems like their attempt to address the problems but in fact they can’t do a lot about the situation.
The other question ringing in a lot of people’s ears is should they be separate? Not necessarily if we look at Pastores Dabo Vobis which is wrote by Blesseded Pope John Paul II, states “human formation as the basis of all priestly formation. The priest is called to be a living image of Jesus Christ and so should try to “reflect in himself, as far as is possible, the human perfection which shines forth in the incarnate Son of God” (PDV 43). “In order that his sacred mission be as humanly credible and acceptable as possible, the student is invited to mould his human personality in such a way that it becomes a bridge, not an obstacle, for others in their meeting with Jesus Christ.”
But the real question is, Maynooth Campus an obstacle for the seminarians in their formation and will the recommendations go far enough to insure that we have good and holy priests, yet that they have the freedom to complete their formation, only time will tell as we wait on the report to be published by the Apostolic Visitation .