University description (as per official university website)
Since its beginning, the Seminary has seen more than 1000 students ordained to the presbyterate, serving in more than fifty dioceses and religious communities in Canada, the United States, and abroad. Twenty (20) members of the alumni have been named to the episcopate. In addition, approximately sixty lay graduates of the theological program are serving the Church in various capacities.
The Seminary was founded by the Right Reverend Michael F. Fallon, OMI, fifth bishop of the diocese of London (1909-1931), and opened on 15 September 1912. In the early years, the students were housed in the bishop's house, now the rectory of St. Peter's Cathedral. The present seminary building was opened and dedicated on 29 September 1926. The seminary building is designed in the collegiate gothic style and constructed of Credit Valley stone with Tyndall stone decoration. The chapel of St. Thomas Aquinas, one of the finest works of collegiate architecture, was dedicated on 18 June 1930, in what was one of the last public appearances of Bishop Fallon before his death in February of the next year.
A wing was added to the Seminary in 1957, providing a new auditorium and recreational facilities. The library was also expanded at that time by changing the cloister into a reading room. In 1968, the chapel was renovated to reflect the liturgical directives of the Second Vatican Council. Another construction project in 1983 saw further expansion of the A. P. Mahoney Library. In 1995, the lower floor of the library was completed for greater public use.
In 1987, St. Peter's Seminary purchased the St. Thomas Scholasticate located on the Seminary's grounds. This had been the house of formation for students of the Congregation of the Resurrection until their move to Toronto in 1981. A complete renovation of the house was undertaken and the newly-named Aquinas House was blessed and opened by Most Reverend John M. Sherlock, DD, ninth bishop of London on the 27 October 1991. Aquinas House now serves as a residence for guests and those enrolled in the Permanent Diaconate program, as well as being used by a number of groups for day-long or weekend retreats. The Marriage Tribunal for the Diocese of London is currently housed in Aquinas House where St. Peter's Institute for Catholic Formation and St. Peterís Seminary Foundation are located on the main floor.
Prayer for Vocations
and Other Prayers
Inspired by the love of the Trinity, urged by the self-emptying of Christ,
and in prayerful communion with the Church, we seek to be and to form
servant-leaders; priests and lay persons who are self giving and life-giving.
Empowered by the Holy Spirit and sharing in the mission of Christ who reconciles
all people to God and to one another in the communion of Godís Kingdom, we strive
to call forth others to join us in this loving service of evangelization.
Within the Seminary community, the formation faculty, mandated by the Bishop, strives to model this Vision, to make it incarnate by leadership and example.
As a Seminary community, we strive to pass on what we have received, proclaiming Christ through the living tradition of the Church and fostering a Eucharistic vision of community. In this context, the preparation for priesthood and lay leadership focuses on the development of the total person Ė human, intellectual, spiritual and pastoral.
The formation for pastoral service acknowledges interdependence. We, the Seminary community, willingly cooperate with others in fulfilling our Vision and Mission. In openness to the world, we strive to be faithful to the Churchís preferential option for the poor.
Guided by our Mission Statement, the Seminary prepares men for the ministerial priesthood for dioceses and religious communities. To this end, the Seminary seeks to promote a Christian and priestly spiritual life, an academic formation in keeping with the standards of the constituent university, and a sense of the Church's mission and mature qualities of leadership in accord with the needs of priestly ministry.
In admitting candidates to the programme of priestly formation, the Seminary accepts candidates from dioceses and religious communities across Canada. While no American dioceses are represented among the student body at present, the Seminary has a long list of graduates from various locations in the United States. Seminarian applicants must be sponsored by the bishop of their diocese or by the Superior of their religious community.
The Seminary also provides an opportunity for education in theology and philosophy to both men and women, religious and lay. The laity play an integral role and form part of the wider seminary community, thus representing the fullness of the Church within the Seminary. A distinct formation programme exists to foster the total growth of lay candidates for ministry in the Church.