Before admitting a man to the seminary the Church has a rigorous selection process to try to ensure that men who go to seminary do so for the right reasons. Pope Francis said recently, “despite the scarcity of vocations, today we are increasingly aware of the need for a better process of selecting candidates to the priesthood. Seminaries cannot accept candidates on the basis of any motivation whatsoever, especially if those motivations have to do with affective insecurity or the pursuit of power, human glory or economic well-being”.
The selection process handled by the Vocation Office and is overseen by the Vocation Director. To be admitted to a seminary a man must show signs that he has a genuine vocation from God. An applicant will develop a relationship with the Vocation Office and Vocation Director, who will will make an assessment of whether there are signs of a priestly vocation and helping those signs to grow. He will work especially on developing a more profound prayer life. After consultation with the Vocation Director, the Archbishop makes the final decision whether to accept the applicant. If his application to join the Archdiocese as a seminarian is accepted, he will then submit applications to one or more seminaries.
The formal selection process includes a number of interviews as well as medical and psychological assessments. The purpose of the selection process is threefold:
- to assess whether an individual may be hearing a call from God to the priesthood;
- to determine if the individual is suitable to be accepted for priestly formation;
- to consider the individual’s ability to make a commitment to the demands of priestly life.
If you are interested in becoming a seminarian for the Archdiocese of Louisville, contact the Vocation Office.