Rev. Melvin C. Blanchette, P.S.S., Ph.D., S.T.B.

Ordained for the Archdiocese of Detroit in 1967, Father Blanchette, P.S.S., retired in 2019 from part-time ministry as an extern spiritual advisor at Theological College. From 2007-2011, he served as the rector of the seminary. As a Sulpician, Fr. Blanchette served as the first consultor on the General Council for the Society of St. Sulpice, based in Paris (1996-2008). Previous to his appointment as rector, Fr. Blanchette served as a formation advisor and spiritual director for three different terms (1971-1973, 1977-1981, 2004-2007). He returned to Theological College in 2012 to serve as a part-time faculty member. In between the last two terms, Fr. Blanchette directed the Vatican II Institute of St. Patrick’s Seminary in Menlo Park, California (2002-2004) and the Center for Continuing Formation at St. Mary’s Seminary and University in Baltimore, Maryland (1997-2002). He also served as director of formation and personnel services for the Society of St. Sulpice in Baltimore, Maryland.

Having completed a doctorate in clinical psychology at Alliant University in San Diego (1975), Fr. Blanchette is a licensed psychologist in Maryland and the District of Columbia. With his training in both theology and psychology, his primary career focus is to bridge the gap between theology, spirituality, and psychology, particularly by aiding clergy and other religious professionals to integrate their lives and ministries more effectively. With this goal in mind, Fr. Blanchette chaired the Department of Pastoral Counseling at the Columbia, Maryland, campus of Loyola College. Fr. Blanchette has written and contributed to numerous books and articles on ministerial formation and psychology. These include: A Primer on Sulpician Spirituality (2017), Pastoral Counseling (edited with Barry Estadt and Jack Compton, Prentice Hall, 1983); The Art of Clinical Supervision: A Pastoral Counseling Perspective (edited with Barry Estadt and Jack Compton, Prentice Hall, 1987); Grace Under Pressure: A Study of Effective Priests Ordained Ten to Thirty Years (NCEA, 1995), and Stewards of the Mysteries of God (edited with Paul Philibert and Dan Danielson, Liturgical Press, 2004).

Fr. Blanchette is a member of the Catholic Theological Society of America, the American Psychological Association, and the Maryland and District of Columbia Psychological Associations. In 2000, the National Catholic Education Association bestowed on him the Pope John Paul II Award for outstanding service to American and Canadian seminaries. The following year, he received the Pope John XXIII award from the National Organization for Continuing Education of Roman Catholic Clergy for his contributions to the continuing formation of priests and religious.