The word seminary (Fr. séminaire, Ger. Seminar ) is sometimes used, especially in Germany, to designate a group of university students devoted to a special line of work. The same word is often applied in England and the United States to young ladies' academies, Protestant or Catholic. When qualified by the word ecclesiastical , it is reserved to schools instituted, in accordance with a decree of the Council of Trent, for the training of the Catholic diocesan clergy. It differs therefore from the novitiate and the scholasticate where members of religious orders receive their spiritual and intellectual formation. In the ecclesiastical seminary both go together. Hence, a faculty of theology in a university is not a seminary; neither is the word to be applied to the German Konvictus, where ecclesiastical students live together while attending lectures of the faculty of theology in the State universities.
An ecclesiastical seminary is diocesan, interdiocesan, provincial, or pontifical, according as it is under the control of the bishop of the diocese, of several bishops who send there their students, of all the bishops of an ecclesiastical province, or of the Holy See. A seminary which receives students from several provinces or from dioceses in various parts of the country is called a central, or a national, seminary.
A theological seminary ( grand séminaire ) provides courses in Holy Scripture , philosophy, theology etc., and gives young men immediate preparation for ordination. A preparatory seminary ( petit séminaire ) gives only a collegiate course as a preparation for entrance into the theological seminary. The word seminary when used alone designates either a theological seminary or a seminary including both the collegiate and the theological courses.
In this connexion it should be noted that the name "college" is sometimes given to institutions which offer no collegiate courses in the usual sense of the term, but receive only ecclesiastics who intend to study philosophy and theology. Such are All Hallows College, Drumcondra, Ireland, the Irish colleges on the Continent, and the various national colleges in Rome (see respective articles). These are in reality seminaries as regards both instruction and discipline. On the other hand there are seminaries which provide undergraduate courses as preparatory to philosophy and theology, thus combining in one institution the work of the petit séminaire and that of the grand séminaire.
A seminary is a school in which priests are trained. A priest is the representative of Christ among men: his mission is to carry on Christ's work for the salvation of souls ; in Christ's name and by His power, he teaches men what they ought to believe and what they ought to do: he forgives sins, and offers in sacrifice the Body and Blood of Christ. He is another Christ ( sacerdos alter Christus ). His training, therefore, must be in harmony with this high office and consequently different in many ways from the preparation for secular professions. He must possess not only a liberal education, but also professional knowledge, and moreover, like an army or navy officer, he needs to acquire the manners and personal habits becoming his calling. To teach candidates for the priesthood what a priest ought to know and to make them what a priest ought to be is the purpose of seminary education ; to this twofold end everything in the form of studies and discipline must be directed.
When a boy of intelligence and piety shows an inclination to become a priest, he is sent after graduation from the grammar or high school to pursue a classical course, either in a preparatory seminary or in a Catholic mixed college where lay as well as ecclesiastical students receive a classical education. This course, successfully completed, prepares him for admission into the theological seminary. The year opens with a retreat of eight or ten days, during which by meditations, conferences, visits to the Blessed Sacrament, recitation of the office, consultations with his spiritual director, his mind and heart are brought under the influence of the great truths of religion, so as to make him realize and feel the importance of his seminary training. Then begins the ordinary routine of the seminary, interrupted only by a short recess, usually at the end of the first term, and by the retreats which precede the Christmas and Trinity ordinations. The receptions of Holy orders are the greatest and the most joyful events of the year, for they keep before the mind of the student the goal of all his efforts, the priesthood. During the scholastic year, a day of each week is set apart for a holiday: the morning is devoted to recreation, or to some favourite study; in the afternoon there is usually a walk, and at times the students visit hospitals or other institutions, where they acquire a foretaste and gain some experience of their future work among the sick and the poor. On Sunday they all assist at a solemn High Mass and at Vespers, and in some places they also attend a conference on Holy Scripture . The summer vacation, lasting about three months, is spent either at the seminary villa, as is the general practice in Italy, or at home, as is commonly done in the United States and other countries.
The ordinary working day is divided between prayer, study, and recreation. Summer and winter, the student rises at 5 or 5.30 a. m., makes his meditation for a half-hour, hears Mass, and usually receives Communion. Breakfast is about two hours after rising. In the forenoon there are two classes of one hour each, while two hours also are devoted to private study. After dinner there is about an hour of recreation. In the afternoon four hours are divided between class and study, and as a rule another hour of study follows supper. A visit to the Blessed Sacrament, the recitation of the Rosary, and spiritual reading take place in the afternoon or evening; and the day closes with night prayer. Thus the student has devoted about three hours to exercises of piety and nine hours to work. After six years of this mental and moral training in retirement from the world, and in the society of fellow students animated by the same purpose and striving after the same ideals, he is deemed worthy of receiving the honour and capable of bearing the burden of the priesthood : he is an educated Christian gentleman, he possesses professional knowledge, he is ready to live and to work among men as the ambassador of Christ.
This system of seminary education, which has now become an essential feature of the Church's life, had its origin only in the sixteenth century in a decree of the Council of Treat. Since Christ's work on earth is to be continued chiefly through diocesan priests, the Apostles and the early popes and bishops always gave special care to the selection and training of the clergy. St. Paul warns Timothy not to impose hands lightly on any man ( 1 Timothy 5:22 ). In the scanty records of the early Roman pontiffs we invariably read the number of deacons, priests, and bishops whom they ordained. But although the training of the clergy was ever held to be a matter of vital importance, we should look in vain during the first centuries for an organized system of clerical education, just as we should look in vain for the fully-developed theology of St. Thomas.B. Individual Training in Early Times
Before St. Augustine no trace can be found of any special institutions for the education of the clergy. Professors and students in the famous Christian schools of Alexandria and Edessa supplied priests and bishops ; but these schools were intended for the teaching of catechumens, and for general instruction; they cannot, therefore, be considered as seminaries. The training of priests was personal and practical; boys and young men attached to the service of a church assisted the bishop and the priests in the discharge of their functions, and thus, by the exercise of the duties of the minor orders, they gradually learned to look after the church, to read and explain Holy Scripture , to prepare catechumens for baptism and to administer the sacraments. Some of the greatest bishops of the period had moreover received a liberal education in pagan schools, and before ordination spent some time in retirement, penitential exercises, and meditation on Holy Scripture .C. From St. Augustine to the Foundation of the Universities
St. Augustine established near the cathedral, in his own house ( in domo ecclesiœ ), a monasterium clericorum in which his clergy lived together. He would raise to Holy orders only such as were willing to unite the community life with the exercise of the ministry. In a few years this institution gave ten bishops to various sees in Africa. It was, however, rather a clergy house than a seminary.
The example of St. Augustine was soon followed at Milan, Nola, and elsewhere. A council held in 529 at Vaison, in Southern Gaul, exhorted parish priests to adopt a custom already obtaining in Italy, to have, young clerics in their house, and to instruct them with fatherly zeal so as to prepare for themselves worthy successors. Two years later the second Council of Toledo decreed that clerics should be trained by a superior in the house of the Church ( in domo Ecclesiœ ), under the eye of the bishop. Another Council of Toledo, held in 633, urges that this training be begun early, so that future priests may spend their youth not in unlawful pleasures but under ecclesiastical discipline. Among those cathedral schools, the best known is that established near the Lateran Basilica, where many popes and bishops were educated ab infantia. Besides, not a few monasteries, such as St. Victor in Paris, Le Bec in Normandy, Oxford, and Fulda, educated not only their own subjects, but also aspirants to the secular clergy .D. From the Thirteenth Century to the Council of Trent
Out of the local episcopal schools grew the medieval universities, when illustrious teachers attracted to a few cities, e.g. Paris, Bologna, Oxford etc., students from various provinces and even from all parts of Europe. As in these schools theology, philosophy, and canon law held the first rank, a large proportion of the students were ecclesiastics or members of religious orders; deprived of their ablest teachers and most gifted students, the cathedral and monastic schools gradually declined. Still, only about one per cent of the clergy were able to attend university courses. The education of the vast majority, therefore, was more and more neglected, while the privileged few enjoyed indeed the highest intellectual advantages, but received little or no spiritual training. The colleges in which they lived maintained for a while good discipline ; but in less than a century the life of ecclesiastical students at the universities was no better than that of the lay students. What was lacking was character-formation and the practical preparation for the ministry.E. The Decree of the Council of Trent
After the Reformation the need of a well-trained clergy was more keenly felt. In the work of the commission appointed by the pope to prepare questions to be discussed in the Council of Trent, ecclesiastical education occupies an important place. When the council convened "to extirpate heresy and reform morals ", it decreed in its Fifth Session (June, 1546) that provision should be made in every cathedral for the teaching of grammar and Holy Scripture to clerics and poor scholars. The council was interrupted before the question of clerical training could be formally taken up. Meanwhile, St. Ignatius established at Rome (1553) the Collegium Germanicum for the education of German ecclesiastical students. Cardinal Pole, who had witnessed the foundation of the German College and had been a member of the commission to prepare for the Council of Trent, went to England after the death of Henry VIII to re-establish the Catholic religion. In the regulations which he issued in 1556, the word seminary seems to have been used for the first time in its modern sense, to designate a school exclusively devoted to the training of the clergy. After the council reopened, the Fathers resumed the question of clerical training; and after discussing it for about a month, they adopted the decree on the foundation of ecclesiastical seminaries.
On 15 July, in the Twenty-third Session, it was solemnly proclaimed in its present form, and has ever since remained the fundamental law of the Church on the education of priests. In substance it is as follows:
So well did the Fathers of Trent understand the importance of the decree, so much did they expect from it, that they congratulated one another, and several declared that, had the council done nothing else, this would be more than sufficient reward of all their labours. An historian of the council, Cardinal Pallavicini, does not hesitate to call the institution of seminaries the most important reform enacted by the council.F. Execution of the Decree of Trent in various Countries
To provide for the carrying out of this important decree, Pius IV forthwith instituted a commission of cardinals. The following year (April, 1564), he decreed the foundation of the Roman Seminary, which was opened in Feb., 1565, and which for more than three centuries has been a nursery of priests, bishops, cardinals, and popes. St. Charles Borromeo , Cardinal Archbishop of Milan, who had taken a leading part in the work of the Council of Trent, was also most zealous and successful in enforcing its decisions. For his large diocese he established three seminaries: one of them furnished a complete course of ecclesiastical studies; in another, a shorter course was provided, especially for those destined to country parishes ; the third was for priests who needed to make up the deficiencies of previous training. For these institutions St. Charles drew up a set of regulations, which have been ever since an inspiration and a model for all founders of seminaries. In other parts of Italy the decree of Trent was gradually put into effect, so that the smallest of the three hundred dioceses had its own complete seminary, including both collegiate and theological departments.
Various attempts by French bishops ended in failure, until St. Vincent de Paul and Father Olier opened seminaries in Paris (1642), and helped to establish them elsewhere in France. A feature of these seminaries and, it is claimed, one of the causes of their success was the separation of theological students from those who were studying the classics, of the theological from the preparatory seminary. In Paris the students of St-Sulpice usually followed lectures at the Sorbonne; some courses given at the seminary completed their intellectual training, while meditation, spiritual conferences, etc. provided for their moral and religious formation. In other places, especially when there was no university, a complete course of instruction was organized in the seminary itself. As there was no Church law requiring students to spend a fixed time in the seminary before ordination, and as the powers of the bishops were hampered by existing customs, some of the clergy, previous to the French Revolution, were not trained in these institutions.
In England and Ireland persecution prevented the foundation of seminaries; before the French Revolutionpriests for the English mission were trained at the English College of Douai. Irish aspirants to the priesthood, leaving Ireland at the peril of their lives, went to the colleges founded for them in Paris, Louvain, and Salamanca by Irish exiles and other generous benefactors, to prepare for a life of self-sacrifice often ending in martyrdom.G. Attempts at Secularization
Towards the end of the eighteenth century, the Emperor Joseph II attempted to bring the education of the clergy in Austria, Northern Italy, and the Netherlands under the control of the State. Students were forbidden by law to frequent the German College in Rome ; episcopal seminaries were suppressed, and in their place central seminaries were founded at Vienna, Budapest, Pavia, Freiburg, and Louvain, in which all clerical students were forced to receive their education under the control not of the bishops but of the state. Professors and text books were chosen by state officials, who also regulated the discipline. Against this usurpation, protests came not only from the Holy See and the bishops, but also from the people; at Louvain the central seminary was burned to the ground. The scheme had to be abandoned, and the successor of Joseph II allowed the bishops to possess and rule their own seminaries.
The tendency to interference, however, remained, and has since shown itself in various German states. In the early years of the nineteenth century the policy of secularization was adopted by the Bavarian Government. Protestants or Free-thinkers were appointed teachers in the faculty of theology and the seminaries; regulations were drawn up for the choice of superiors, discipline, plan of studies, examinations, admission, and dismissal of students. After a long conflict a concordat was signed in 1817, by which the rights of bishops to erect and control seminaries were recognized. The same struggle occurred in other German states. The conflict became specially acute in 1873, when the Prussian Government in the famous May Laws issued a scheme which prescribed a regular course in a gymnasium, three years theology at a state university, and then examination before state inspectors, as essential conditions of appointment to any ecclesiastical position. Education in seminaries might be accepted as equivalent if the bishops submitted the rules to the State for approval. As they refused to comply, the seminaries of Treves, Gnesen-Posen, Strasburg, and others were closed. Negotiations between the Government and the Holy See were opened after the election of Leo XIII. Among the points on which the Church could never yield, the pope laid stress upon the rights of bishops to have seminaries and to control the education of the clergy. The more vexatious measures were abolished, and harmony was restored between Church and State .H. Present Conditions in Germany
At present nearly all ecclesiastical students make their college course in a public gymnasium, together with lay students. For the teaching of theology and spiritual formation there are two systems. The first consists of a course of three years in one of the faculties of theology, in the State universities of Bonn, Breslau, Freiburg, Munich, Münster, Tübingen, or Würzburg. The appointment of professors in these faculties is made by the Government but with the approval of the bishops, who can moreover forbid their students to attend the lectures of objectionable teachers. While at the university the students usually live together in a Konvictus under one or two priests, but they enjoy about as much liberty as lay students. After completing their course they spend a year or eighteen months in a practical seminary ( priesterseminar ), to learn ceremonies, ascetic and pastoral theology, and thus prepare immediately for ordination. For this system, which has many strong advocates, the following advantages are pointed out: it develops intellectual and moral initiative, accustoms the students to live in the world, and gives them the prestige of a university education. Its opponents insist: That it is not in harmony with the decree of Treat and the subsequent instructions of the Holy See, urging bishops to establish seminaries ad mentem concilii Tridentini, where candidates for the priesthood may receive the special education proper to their calling; that, the university professors being irremovable, the bishops have not sufficient control over the orthodoxy of their teaching; that instruction obtained in those faculties lacks unity and co-ordination, some essential points being overlooked, while undue importance is at times attached to matters of little practical utility for the majority of the clergy ; that the spiritual training, neglected in the universities, cannot be obtained in the few months spent at the practical seminary.
There are regular Tridentine seminaries at Eichstädt, Fulda, Mainz, Metz, and Trier, in which professional instruction and spiritual formation go together. Recently a compromise between the university and the seminary systems of clerical training has been effected in Strasburg.J. Recent Developments and Present Conditions in other Countries (1) France
The Revolution swept away the seminaries and the faculty of theology of the Sorbonne where the leaders of the French clergy had been trained. As soon as liberty was restored, one of the first cares of the bishops was to re-establish their seminaries. On account of the lack of thoroughly competent teachers in many places and the urgent need of priests everywhere, only a minimum of knowledge could be exacted. Nor had the short-lived faculty of theology established by the State at the Sorbonne much influence in raising the general standard of clerical studies. During the last thirty years, however, the Catholic institutes of Paris, Lyons, Toulouse, Lille, and Angers have done much to train teachers for theological seminaries, as well as for the petits séminaires. The latter are usually open to all who seek a liberal education, whether they intend to become priests or not; hence, they do not realize the Tridentine ideal. As a result of the Separation Law, the seminaries, even those built by private contributions of Catholics, have been confiscated by the State. In spite of financial difficulties and the falling-off in the number of students, diocesan seminaries are maintained, some with less than a score of students. As to preparatory seminaries, whereas formerly there were several in most dioceses, their number is considerably reduced.(2) England
The English College at Douai, suppressed by the French Revolution , was replaced in England by St. Edmund's, Ushaw , and Oscott. These provided a complete course of clerical education, including collegiate and theological studies; none, however, was a seminary in the strict sense of the Council of Trent, for they received lay as well as ecclesiastical students. In the provincial councils of Westminster, the bishops advocated the separation of clerical from lay students as the only remedy against worldliness; they decreed that the foundation of seminaries for the exclusive education of the clergy would contribute powerfully to the increase of religion, and finally they pledged themselves to establish such seminaries. Cardinal Manning founded a separate seminary for the theological students of the Archdiocese of Westminster, and regarded this as the great work of his life. Other bishops followed this example. A seminary in full harmony with the Council of Trent, i.e. exclusively for ecclesiastical students, and destined to provide a complete course of preparation for the priesthood was opened for the Diocese of Southwark.
Cardinal Vaughan, who succeeded Cardinal Manning in 1893, had long been of opinion that separate diocesan seminaries were not opportune in England. He advocated a central seminary for the southern dioceses, in which by combining their resources in men and money the bishops could provide excellent teachers, a good library, the emulation which comes with increased number of students, and the stability which would be secured, if the control of one bishop were replaced by that of a board of all the bishops interested. These views being freely expressed in "The Tablet" (London), Dr. Bourne, the future successor of Cardinal Vaughan at Westminster, then rector of the Southwark Seminary, set forth in the same periodical the reasons for separate diocesan seminaries, i.e. the authority of the Council of Trent and of the provincial councils of Westminster, the possibility of giving in most dioceses the elementary yet solid instruction needed for the ministry, and of sending some of the most gifted students to some foreign Catholic university where they would receive higher instruction than could be provided in a central seminary in England. Cardinal Vaughan having secured the approbation and encouragement of Leo XIII for his project determined, together with four other bishops, to send his theological students to Oscott, which thus, from being the diocesan seminary of Birmingham, became in 1897 a central seminary for six dioceses. No change, however, was made in the faculty, and the administration continued in the main to be diocesan. Shortly after the cardinal's death, a theological seminary for the Archdiocese of Westminster was opened in connexion with St. Edmund's College .(3) Ireland
Irish colleges on the Continent, which harboured about five hundred students, having been closed by the Revolution, it became necessary to provide in Ireland for the training of the clergy. A college opened at Carlow in 1793 was soon closed through fear of Government prosecution. Re-established later, it now gives a complete course of ecclesiastical training. The foundation of a Catholic college being made legal by an Act of Parliament, Maynooth was opened in 1795 with forty students. It has rapidly developed, especially during the last years of the nineteenth century. The missionary college of All Hallows was founded in 1842, and placed in 1892 under the direction of the Vincentians ; it has sent hundreds of priests to Australia, New Zealand , South Africa, and the United States. Besides these and other institutions, most of the dioceses have their preparatory seminaries. There are also some Irish students at Salamanca and at Rome. The Irish College in Paris has been closed in consequence of the Separation Laws in France.(4) Canada
The Jesuits established a college at Quebec in 1637. Bishop Laval founded a theological seminary in 1663 and in 1668 a preparatory seminary, the students of which followed the classes of the Jesuit College. When the latter was suppressed after the English conquest, the preparatory seminary became a mixed college. In 1852 the seminary and college of Quebec were raised to the rank of a university, with the title of Laval in honour of the founder. At Montreal a college was founded by the Sulpicians in 1767, a separate theological department was established in 1840, and the seminary of philosophy in 1847. More recently theological seminaries have been opened at Ottawa by the Oblates and at Halifax by the Eudists, and one is being erected at Toronto. Until recently, in several dioceses of Canada, candidates for the priesthood received their training not in seminaries, but in mixed colleges where, after finishing their classical course, they read theology, whilst discharging the duties of prefect or teacher. Upon the advice of the Congregation of the Propaganda , the Provincial Council of Montreal (1895) decreed that ecclesiastics studying for the priesthood in colleges can only be prefects and not teachers; it also decreed that before ordination they must spend three years in a regular seminary.(5) United States
In colonial days, Spanish Jesuits and Franciscans laboured in Florida, Louisiana, New Mexico , and California ; missionaries from France and Canada were the pioneers in Maine, New York, and the Mississippi Valley; the Maryland missions, under the jurisdiction of the Vicar Apostolic of London, were in charge of English Jesuits. When John Carroll was appointed Bishop of Baltimore, one of his first cares was to provide the means for the training of a native clergy. In England, where he went to receive episcopal consecration, he obtained from a friend a generous gift for his future seminary, and he accepted an offer made to him in London, in the name of Father Emery, superior of St-Sulpice, to send some members of his society to establish a seminary at Baltimore. In his first address to his clergy and people on his return to America, Bishop Carroll mentioned among the duties of his pastoral office the institution of a seminary "for training up ministers for the sanctuary and the services of religion that we may no longer depend on foreign and uncertain coadjutors".
The following year (1791) Father Nagot, with three other Sulpicians and four students, reached Baltimore and opened St. Mary's Seminary in the place where it stands today. In this first American seminary Bishop Carroll ordained, 25 May, 1793, his first priest, Rev. S. Badin , who for over half a century laboured on the missions of Kentucky. The lack of a sufficient number of ecclesiastical students forced the Sulpicians to receive lay students also, even Protestants, so that St. Mary's became a mixed college and, until the classical department was closed in 1852, had but few seminarians. In order to foster and preserve ecclesiastical vocations, Father Nagot opened (1807) at Pigeon Hill, Pennsylvania, a preparatory seminary which was the following year transferred to Mount St. Mary's, but this institution soon became (like St. Mary's at Baltimore ), and has remained to this day (1911), a mixed college with a theological seminary, the students of which help in carrying on the work of the collegiate department. A more successful attempt to have a purely preparatory seminary was made by the Sulpicians in the foundation of St. Charles's College ; opened in 1848, it has always been destined exclusively for aspirants to the priesthood.
As new dioceses were created, the first care of the bishops was to provide a clergy. Shortly after their consecration, the bishops usually went to Europe to recruit priests, while at home they spared no pains to train a native clergy. Bishop Flaget went to Bardstown in 1811 with three students, the nucleus of St. Thomas's Seminary which for half a century was the nursery of many pioneer priests and bishops of the West. It was closed in 1869. Seminaries were likewise established by: Bishop England at Charleston (1822); Bishop Dubourg at St. Louis (1818); Bishop Fenwick at Cincinnati (1829); Bishop Fenwick at Boston (1829); Bishop Kenrick at Philadelphia (1832); Bishop Dubois at New York (1832); Bishop Blanc at New Orleans (1838); Bishop O'Connor at Pittsburg (1844); Bishop Whelan at Richmond (1842) and Wheeling (1850); Bishop Henni at Milwaukee (1846); Bishop Lefebre at Detroit (1846); Bishop Timon at Buffalo (1847); Bishop Rappe at Cleveland (1849); Bishop Loras at Dubuque (1849). As a rule these seminaries were begun in or near the bishop's house, and often with the bishop as the chief instructor. The more advanced students helped to instruct the others, and all took part in the services of the cathedral. Their education, like that given to priests in the Early Church, was individual and practical; their intellectual training may have been somewhat deficient, but their priestly character was moulded by daily intercourse with the self-sacrificing pioneer bishops and priests.
Most of those imperfectly organized seminaries, after doing good service in their day, have long ceased to exist, while a few have been transformed into modern institutions. The diocesan seminary of New York was transferred (1836) from Nyack to Lafargeville, in the Thousand Islands, and later on to Fordham (1840). In 1864 a seminary was opened at Troy for the provinces of New York and Boston ; the latter established its own seminary in 1884, and in 1897 the New York seminary was transferred to its present location at Dunwoodie. The theological seminary at Philadelphia, which commenced with five students in the upper rooms of Bishop Kenrick's residence, was after various vicissitudes transferred in 1865 to its actual site at Overbrook, where the preparatory seminary opened at Glen Riddle in 1859 was also located in 1871. The Seminary of St. Francis, Milwaukee, started in 1846 with seven students in a wooden building attached to Bishop Henni's house, was through the efforts of Dr. Salzmann removed to the present building, which was dedicated in 1856. In San Francisco, after several unsuccessful attempts under Bishop Amat and Archbishop Alemany, a preparatory seminary was opened by Archbishop Riordan in 1896; to this was soon added a theological department. The St. Paul Seminary, opened by Archbishop Ireland in 1894-95, has done excellent service in educating priests for many of the western dioceses.
Among the leaders in the development of ecclesiastical education in America the late Bishop MacQuaid deserves a prominent place. He was the first president of Seton Hall College (1856), and later on as Bishop of Rochester he established the preparatory Seminary of St. Andrew, 1871, and the theological Seminary of St. Bernard. The latter, which opened in 1893 with thirty-nine students, numbers now over two hundred from various dioceses. The Josephinum, founded at Columbus (1875) and placed under the immediate direction of Propaganda (1892), provides a free and complete course for priests destined for the American missions, especially in German-speaking congregations. The Polish college and seminary at Detroit has been established to meet the special needs of Polish Catholics in the United States.
Religious orders had their full share in this growth of seminaries. The Vincentians, who have always considered the training of the clergy as an essential part of their work, opened the seminary at St. Louis (1816) which has been under their care ever since. They also conducted the seminary of New Orleans from 1838 until its suppression. They founded Niagara (1867), which has been raised to the rank of a university and maintains an important theological department. For ten years they were in charge of the seminary at Philadelphia. They have directed the diocesan seminary at Brooklyn from the beginning, and they have recently opened a theological seminary at Denver. The Sulpicians, a society of secular prie
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