Priestly Formation - Saint John's Seminary
Celebrating 140 Years of Mission!  

Priestly Formation

Forming disciples. Proclaiming Jesus Christ.

Saint John's Seminary is proud to serve the Church since 1884 in forming men who aspire to be priests in the Roman Catholic Church. Seminary life is marked by communal prayer, fraternity, evangelistic zeal, growth in virtue, and intellectual engagement. It is a house of discernment filled with joy, encouragement, and guidance.

We welcome those men who feel called to the priesthood to discover all that we have to offer through our Priestly Formation Program and to respond with generous faith to the Lord’s call.

Seminary formation is a process of continuous personal growth and development of a man aimed toward the goal of priestly ordination. It is a program of preparation and formation of the whole person in the context of the four areas of formation: Human, Pastoral, Intellectual, and Spiritual.

Forming holy priests to serve the people of God is a sacred duty. The administrators, priest-formators, faculty, and staff see this sacred duty as mission-critical to the service of the universal church.

Formation Programs

The primary objective of the Priestly Formation Program at Saint John's Seminary is to prepare men for parish priesthood.

Priestly formation involves the integration of four areas (academic, pastoral, spiritual and human formation), all directed towards the unique vocation of configuration to Christ to act in his person as head and pastor of the Church and in the name of the whole people of God as conferred in the Sacrament of Orders. Thus all formation is preparation to proclaim the Gospel to the world and to build up the Church in the name and person of Christ, the head and shepherd (Pastores Dabo Vobis, 15).

Four Pillars of Formation


A vocation is a calling from God to serve His Church in a particular state of life. For a man discerning a vocation to the priesthood, the process for admittance to a Roman Catholic Seminary is extensive and rigorous.

Contact a Vocations Director

When you make a donation to Saint John's Seminary, you are supporting the education of your future parish priests, laity, deacons, and professed religious who serve in countless ministries throughout New England and beyond.


Additional Information

See what our Alumni are saying

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Alumni Throwback

Fr. Alex Boucher, Diocese of Portland, ME

Ordination Class: 2020

Saint John’s will always hold a special place in my heart. It is the place where I truly embraced the vocation to the priesthood, made friends that will support and sustain me for the rest of my life, and had the opportunity to learn from excellent professors and formators. All of these things would’ve been fruitless had it not been for Saint John’s Chapel, the true heart of the seminary. For all of that, I am grateful to God and to Saint John’s Seminary.

“The seminary can be seen as a place and a period in life. But it is above all an educational community in progress: It is a community established by the bishop to offer those called by the Lord to serve as apostles the possibility of re-living the experience of formation which our Lord provided for the Twelve. In its deepest identity the seminary is called to be, in its own way, a continuation in the Church of the apostolic community gathered about Jesus, listening to his word, proceeding toward the Easter experience, awaiting the gift of the Spirit for the mission. Such an identity constitutes the normative ideal which stimulates the seminary in the many diverse forms and varied aspects which it assumes historically as a human institution, to find a concrete realization, faithful to the Gospel values from which it takes its inspiration and able to respond to the situations and needs of the times”
(Pastores Dabo Vobis, nos. 1, 60)