St. Vincent de Paul Regional Seminary
St. Vincent de Paul Regional Seminary is a Roman Catholic seminary geared towards the education and formation of seminarians to the Roman Catholic priesthood. It is located in Boynton Beach, Florida. At the invitation of Bishop Coleman F. Carroll, the first bishop of Miami, the Vincentian Fathers founded the seminary in 1963. The Vincentian Fathers withdrew on July 1, 1971, and the Archdiocese of Miami took over the operation of the seminary; gradually, each of the seven dioceses of Florida would come to join the corporation which owns the seminary, uniting the dioceses of the province of Florida in the formation of their priests. St. Vincent de Paul Regional Seminary was established to form men for the diocesan and religious priesthood for the Catholic Church in North America, Central and South America, and the Caribbean. Laity are also accepted into the program as well. It serves as the only Roman Catholic theologate in the Southeastern United States (located 1000 miles from the nearest seminary to the north, and 800 miles from the nearest seminary to the west), and serves as only one of two bilingual seminaries in the United States. The seminary stresses this multicultural importance in ministry to the point that students are expected to be able to preach competently in their pastoral language before graduation, as well as celebrate the Eucharist and two other sacraments in their pastoral language (in addition to participation in bilingual liturgies and events, stressing Spanish and English).
In accordance with the Program of Priestly Formation, St. Vincent de Paul seeks to cultivate and form men according to the four pillars of formation: human, spiritual, academic, and pastoral. The integration of each of these pillars is of principal importance to the seminary; successful accomplishment of requirements and approval from the formation team will earn a Master of Divinity. The time table for matriculation is usually five years, though there are exceptions. The seminary has as a prime goal for well-formed men to become leaders of the community, and to be ready to live as a public person. The process of approval by different members of the Formation Team and of each seminarians’ respective bishop are to ensure that these men are worthy to candidacy as priests in the Roman Catholic Church. Currently, there are over 460 alumni from St. Vincent de Paul, many of whom serve in various positions and locations in the Catholic Church in Florida. Some alumni who have been elevated to the episcopacy (among others) are Archbishop Thomas G. Wenski of the Archdiocese of Miami, Bishop Felipe J. Estévez of the Diocese of St. Augustine, and Bishop John G. Noonan of the Diocese of Orlando.
In the 2010-2011 academic year, the seminary enrolled 26 new students, and had in total 73 seminarians for the fall semester; this is a record number in the history of St. Vincent de Paul Regional Seminary.
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