THE SEMINARIAN PROCESS BEGINS WITH RELATIONSHIP
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becoming a priest
takes time, engagement, and community
Regardless of where you are on the discernment journey, the process of becoming a priest in the Archdiocese of Newark can be broken down into three stages: Inquiry, Aspirancy, and Application to Seminary.
"NO MAN LIVES ALONE, NO MAN BELIEVES ALONE. GOD SPEAKS HIS WORD TO US AND IN SPEAKING IT CALLS US TOGETHER, CREATES A COMMUNITY, HIS PEOPLE, HIS CHURCH."
St Basil the Great
Am I being called to the priesthood? Could God actually want me to be His priest? How can I know for sure?
The Inquiry stage is a period of time during which an interested candidate inquires after God's will for his life. While less formal than the next two stages, it is best pursued under the guidance of the Vocations Office.
Inquirers would meet with the Vocations Director periodically in order to grow in a variety of different ways. After some period of consistent meetings, he would discover that he is either not called to the priesthood, or would move forward into the Aspirancy stage.
After a period of Inquiry, an interested candidate will embark on a year-long period of formal discernment called Aspirancy.
An Aspirant would meet with a spiritual director, parish priest mentor and join other aspirants for reflection nights. He would also be given the opportunity to pray on silent retreats, pilgrimages and mission trips. Discerning in community has proven to be of tremendous assistance to men in this period in their lives.
After a period of Aspirancy with the Vocations Office, the young man will be able to discern clearly whether he should enter the seminary or recognize that God may be calling him to religious or married life.
After a man completes Aspirancy he may be invited to apply to Seminary for the Archdiocese of Newark.
This process takes anywhere from 4-6 months and is done in anticipation of the fall semester of the academic year.
Seminary formation builds on the intellectual, human, spiritual and pastoral dimensions of every man and is the last period of discernment before entering the priesthood. A seminarian remains active in his discernment as he seeks to answer the question: am I called to be a priest?