Now is the time to prepare to be ready to undertake this commitment. If the Bishop or Religious Superior* accepts me I will begin my studies for the priesthood which is likely to last several years. This time will also provide further opportunity with the diocese or religious community to support discernment for this vocation. In addition formation in the following areas: + spiritual, + human, + pastoral + academic.
As with each of these stages support is offered in many different ways and will need to take increasing responsibility for individual formation.
* Applies if becoming a priest in a religious order rather than a diocese.» click to see more/less
If the Bishop accepts you, then you will begin your
studies for the diocesan priesthood, which are likely to
last 6 years (possibly less for “mature students”) at a
seminary and there may also be an additional preparatory
year in Spain. This time will give you and the diocese
further opportunities to discern my vocation and for me to
undergo formation in the following areas: spiritual, human,
pastoral and academic. As with each of these stages I will
be offered support in lots of different ways and will need
to take increasing responsibility for my own formation.
Seminary can be a time of great joy, companionship and opportunity. But it can also be a time of spiritual growth and that can often be experienced as painful, frustrating or infuriating. Seminaries are human communities and, because of that, they are places where we need to offer plenty of patience, forgiveness and charity. But they are also places where we can experience those same qualities.
In England and Wales there are three seminaries: St. Mary’s, Oscott, Birmingham; St. John’s, Wonersh, near Guildford; and Allen Hall, Chelsea, London.
England and Wales are also served by two seminaries in Rome: The Venerable English College and the Beda ; as well as by the English College, Valladolid, Spain, which hosts a propadeutic or preparatory year for those whom the Bishop chooses to send.
Some of these will allow visitors to go and visit, so do not be afraid to contact them to find out what is possible.