The preparation of new priests for ministry currently faces closer scrutiny than at any time since the Reformation, and the importance of effective priestly formation has perhaps never been clearer in the entire history of the church. In Models of Priestly Formation, some of the world's leading experts on the topic consider priestly formation since Vatican II, explore current best practices internationally, and imagine what the future of such formation might look like. The book promises to become an essential reference for every person involved in priestly formation and for anyone interested in understanding better how it is carried out and how those who do it think about their task. The eBook edition includes four additional essays.
Declan Marmion is professor of systematic theology at St Patrick's College, Maynooth, and currently serves as dean of the theology faculty.
Michael Mullaney is president and professor of canon law at St Patrick's College, Maynooth. He is a priest of the Diocese of Cashel and Emly.
Salvador Ryan is professor of ecclesiastical history at St Patrick's College, Maynooth, where he also teaches at the National Seminary.
Editors Declan Marmion, Michael Mullaney, and Salvador Ryan have gathered a timely collection of essays on priestly formation that offers an engaging historical overview of Catholic seminaries, an astute and critical assessment of the present state of affairs, and a practical and prudent blueprint for seminary formation in the years ahead. This collection, notable for its breadth and clarity, belongs on the desks of the world's rectors and bishops.
Rev. Donald Cozzens, former seminary rector and author of The Changing Face of the Priesthood
Models of Priestly Formation is of utmost importance in the ongoing discussion on Church reform and pastoral ministry. This book is particularly eye-opening as it casts a light on the vast differences in priestly formation in the long history of the Church (from Trent to Vatican II to the internet savvy and social-media connected seminarians of today) and in the new geography of global Catholicism (not only the northern hemisphere, but also Africa, Asia, and Australia), at the time of the global sex abuse crisis. Highly recommended-but it should be required reading-for all those who work in programs for the formation of priests but also lay ministers.
Dr. Massimo Faggioli, Professor of Historical Theology, Villanova University
This is the book I've been looking for since the most recent Ratio Fundamentalis was promulgated in 2016! The carefully compiled essays in this volume helped me to grasp the distinctive nuances of the new Ratio within the wider history of priestly formation and expanded my appreciation of the global perspective we must take. As a result, I have an even greater humility regarding my own vocation as a formator.
Dr. Ann M. Garrido, Aquinas Institute of Theology
This collection is a practical resource and hopeful vision for renewing priestly formation. The articles are especially helpful since they draw on global experiences with eyes open equally to flawed and flourishing realities in formation programs. Special attention is paid throughout to the integration of priestly formation elements and to the key role that is being profitably played in some places-though still not enough-by lay women and men as equal collaborators.
Christopher M. Bellitto, Ph.D., Professor of History, Kean University, Author, Renewing Christianity
The Tridentine Church is crumbling. Its renewal requires priests who are freed from clericalism and unafraid of mature collaboration with the laity. How are we to form such priests? There are few more important questions for Catholicism today and this book engages with it courageously and insightfully.
Timothy Radcliffe, OP, former Master of the Dominican Order
Models of Priestly Formation is an essential resource for anyone undertaking this ministry today. This overview of Magisterial documents, as well as the history and theology of seminary formation is balanced by practical reflections by leading experts. The authors provide vision and offer hope in a critical moment in Church history, when healthy human and spiritual development must be guaranteed.
Fr. David Songy, OFMCap, STD, PsyD, President and CEO, Saint Luke Institute, Silver Spring, Maryland
A thought-provoking and inspiring collection of future-oriented perspectives on priestly formation from a richly diverse range of global voices-teachers and practitioners as well as senior voices from religious orders and other church leaders who share a multitude of experience at the formative coalface. Together the contributors seek to answer Pope Francis' call for the church to jettison the culture of clericalism and the pedestal model of priesthood in favor of promoting, as the editors make clear, `a model of discipleship, service and mercy".
Gerard Mannion, DPhil, Amaturo Professor in Catholic Studies, Georgetown University
This extraordinarily helpful symposium was produced by a stellar cast of authors. High professional qualifications and years of valuable experience give great credibility to their recommendations for the human, spiritual, intellectual and pastoral dimensions of priestly formation. They envisage ministerial priesthood as nothing less than a lifelong pilgrimage of Christian discipleship and human integration. I cannot recommend this book too highly.
Gerald O'Collins, SJ, taught for 33 years at the Gregorian University, Rome, and is now a research fellow of the University of Divinity (Melbourne)