Seminarians - Welcome!
As Dean of Seminarians, I appreciate this opportunity to provide a short overview of the seminarian experience at Blessed John XXIII National Seminary. As a theological institution dedicated to the preparation of second-career seminarians, it is important to us to respect and utilize the life experiences and accomplishments of our mature seminarians. The various aspects of seminary life at Blessed John XXIII reflect our commitment to this goal.
The prayer life of the Seminary is its heart. Our day begins and ends in prayer with the communal celebration of the Divine Office from the Liturgy of the Hours. We share the Eucharist at daily Masses in our chapel. We celebrate special liturgies throughout the year including liturgies dedicated to the institutions of Acolyte, Reader and Admission to Candidacy. We often enjoy communal Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament. Our Spiritual Directors regularly offer conferences and are available on a one-on-one basis at all times. The Seminary has a smaller chapel for individual prayer and both indoor and outdoor Stations of the Cross.
We gather as a community for meals, worship, in hospitality and in many other ways. To help meet the various needs of our diverse community, much of the day-to-day life of the Seminary operates with advisement from various student/faculty committees. These committees help to establish Seminary policies and provide valuable input for pending decisions.
Classes are held in the morning, with elective classes also meeting in the afternoon. Many of the classes include a seminar component offering men the opportunity to explore ways that theology meets practical problems encountered in ministry. In Homiletics class, seminarians are offered opportunities to learn to communicate effectively in various group settings, in the sense of both teaching and preaching. The Seminary Library provides invaluable resources required to enhance and complete assignments.
The Seminary is located in Weston, Massachusetts, 13 miles west of downtown Boston, on over 35 acres of wooded land. Our proximity to Boston makes available to us numerous educational, cultural and recreational opportunities. The Seminary features the main chapel and dining room on the first floor, where two exceptional chefs prepare meals which are served family style. Residence areas are on the first and second floors. Seminarians are assigned a single room and share a bathroom/shower with their neighbor. Rooms are equipped with high speed internet/local area network connection and cable TV hookup. In addition to classrooms and offices, the building has a library, audiovisual room, bookstore, laundry, computer lab and seminarian lounge. All classrooms are equipped with wireless internet access. A smoke free environment is preserved in the building.
I hope you have found this overview helpful. It is our mission to provide the capable and holy parish leaders of the future. We are proud of our exemplary men and acknowledge their sacrifice in choosing to spend the remainder of their lives serving the faithful of the Church.
Yours sincerely in Christ,
Rev. Thomas F. Schmitt
Dean of Seminarians