“The seminary is a time when you learn with one another and from one another. In community life, which can at times be difficult, you should learn generosity and tolerance, not only bearing with, but also enriching one another, so that each of you will be able to contribute his own gifts to the whole, even as all serve the same Church, the same Lord. This school of tolerance, indeed, of mutual acceptance and mutual understanding in the unity of Christ’s Body, is an important part of your years in the seminary.”
– Pope Benedict XVI
The formation program at Theological College is complemented and supported by the rich community life so central to each seminarian’s experience. The nature of living in community invites and demands the seminarian to grow into a true man of communion, for it necessarily requires self-sacrifice and openness to others. Seminarians gather daily for community meals in the refectory, where they are often joined by faculty, staff, resident priests, and guests. The student lounge, Basselin Library, computer center, game room, exercise room, visitor’s lounge, and various outdoor spaces also help foster community life. The friendships formed here extend beyond the doors of Theological College and inform the life of alumni for the decades of ministry that lie ahead.
TC seminarians receive their academic formation at The Catholic University of America. As integral members of the CUA student community, they participate in campus ministry, intramural sports, charitable and other organizations, and myriad presentations and events sponsored by the university. Theological College has its own Student Government Association, composed of four elected officers, individual class representatives, and committee chairs. The committees include Community Life, Prayer and Worship, Social Justice, and Hispanic Affairs.
A representative from the seminary community is also a member of CUA’s School of Theology and Religious Studies Students’ Association, a student committee of the university that provides a forum for student representation and feedback to the School of Theology and Religious Studies. The committee sponsors an annual speaker’s series and other year-round activities that nurture the spiritual, social and intellectual lives of its members.
Seminarian life extends into the wider community through the Pastoral Placement Program. TC seminarians serve in the Archdioceses of Washington and Baltimore and the Diocese of Arlington. This includes hospital, catechetical, prison, and parish ministry, as well as direct service to the poor, disabled, and disadvantaged. Through this program, communities surrounding TC are made aware of seminarian life and come to appreciate the life of service seminarians are called toward. This program facilitates a broad exposure to pastoral experiences and situations that will prepare seminarians for priestly ministries in their dioceses.