The Rule of Benedict describes the unique position of a monk chosen by his abbot for ordination to the priesthood, pointing out that "The monk so ordained . . . will have to subject himself all the more to the discipline of the rule" (Rule of Benedict 62). Benedict's brevity on this subject makes his words even more powerful, emphasizing the importance of deeply integrating the Rule into the life of a monk who becomes a priest.
Saint's John's is able to foster this integration during a monk's time as a seminarian by using the Rule of Benedict as the guide for priestly formation and education (see the USCCB's Program of Priestly Formation, 5th edition, numbers 26-31). Having a specifically monastic priestly formation allows ordained monks to help their home monasteries maintain the rich monastic character of their various apostolates which are as necessary to the church as they have always been.
The education and formation of priesthood candidates assists them to discern their gifts and to prepare for a ministry of service to their communities and to the people of God as ordained monks. Formation addresses topics particular to priestly ministry, such as living celibacy as a gift and a discipline, in addition to competencies for pastoral ministry, such as preaching and pastoral care.
Choose "Seminary" in the main menu for a message from the rector, information about scholarships, and answers to frequently asked questions.
Master of Divinity students may also earn a Master of Arts degree, either simultaneously with or after their Master of Divinity studies, by completing 18 additional credits, two graduate papers or a thesis, the language proficiency exam, and comprehensive exams.