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Whatever happened to the St. Gregory the Theologian Seminary in Massachusetts? I believe that the rector is/was Fr. Emmanuel Charles McCarthy. I was told that it was merely on paper only but not exactly existent. Can someone verify this and is there anyone who knows if there will be any plans to change this?

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I think a common seminary might be a very good idea. But I still think getting seminarians from Europe and elsewhere (as well as teachers) will help revitalize the Eastern Churches even more. I know, there was an attempt in Canada among the Ukrainians a few years ago and I have heard firsthand from one of the Ukrainian priests about the problems. But those problems (favoritism, for the most part) could be worked out. And should never have happened. Don't people take vows anymore? Couldn't there be a vow added (if it isn't there already) that would eliminate some of the problems that popped up in Canada? And who was at fault--the young, impressionable Ukrainian seminarian or the people in charge who allowed some of the things to happen? Both were at fault, but if one had to put a percentage as to whom was at fault more......

Tim



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Actually, most of the students at the Sheptytsky Institute are Eastern Catholic, with a few Eastern Orthodox, Latin Catholic, and Protestant thrown in.

Of the Eastern Catholics at the Sheptytsky Institute, the majority are Ukrainian Catholic, because all the seminarians at Holy Spirit Seminary do their academic formation through the Sheptytsky Institute. The seminarians, of course, do receive spiritual formation at the seminary.

Students at the Institute who aren't seminarians don't receive spiritual formation at the Institute, since, as you say, it is an academic institute, not a seminary. Nevertheless, as you can see, there are strong connections between the Sheptytsky Institute and Holy Spirit Seminary.

Overall, I'm quite please with the academic level at the Institute -- and I would recommend it to anyone who is interested in learning about Eastern Christianity. If seminarians from the other Eastern Catholic Churches in Canada and the US were to come to Holy Spirit Seminary, then the Sheyptytsky Institute would be an ideal place to do their academic formation.


Peace,
Alex NvV

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Alex,

What are the costs to attend MSI? I understand there was an endowment at one point to help subsidize the education of Eastern Catholics at the Institute.

If all Byzantine jurisdictions banded together to approach (and invest) in Holy Spirit Seminary to make it the North American Byzantine/Greek Catholic seminary, I would imagine that they would get a positive response.

And the effect could be tremendous on Greek Catholic unity. Can you imagine generations of priests from different jurisdictions who were formed together in the same seminary in a pan-Byzantine way? Not to mention that I have been told that the level of education there is simply phenomenal.

Here is the website for Holy Spirit Seminary:

http://www.holyspiritseminary.org/

Of course, MSI has been doing distance learning courses in California for a number of years at Holy Transfiguration Monastery.

God bless!

Gordo

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Quote
Actually, most of the students at the Sheptytsky Institute are Eastern Catholic, with a few Eastern Orthodox, Latin Catholic, and Protestant thrown in.

Of the Eastern Catholics at the Sheptytsky Institute, the majority are Ukrainian Catholic, because all the seminarians at Holy Spirit Seminary do their academic formation through the Sheptytsky Institute. The seminarians, of course, do receive spiritual formation at the seminary.

I think a distinction has to be made between students who are majoring in Eastern Christian Studies and St. Paul's University students who may not be majoring in Eastern Christian Studies but are just taking classes that are offered by the Sheptytsky Institute which is an integral part of the University. People who are not familar with the situation may assume that you are talking about a seperate physical building that is distinct from the rest of the university.
Besides the spiritual formation of a seminary this is another aspect that is different: the classes are not made up of students who are one in purpose and belief. From the information I have seen the majority of the classes are not made up Eastern-Rite students. I know this was an issue in fund raising in the Ukrainian community. If my information is not current then I stand corrected.
I would think the aim is to have a seminary with spiritual formation and also classes with students who are all Eastern.

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Originally Posted by Collin Nunis
Whatever happened to the St. Gregory the Theologian Seminary in Massachusetts? I believe that the rector is/was Fr. Emmanuel Charles McCarthy. I was told that it was merely on paper only but not exactly existent. Can someone verify this and is there anyone who knows if there will be any plans to change this?

Collin,

Although Father Charlie McCarthy is still designated as the rector, the seminary exists only on paper at this point and has for several years. I'm unaware of any plans for change in the immediate future. The former facilities in Newton have been sold and the reliance of late for coursework has been on the Boston Theological Institute (a highly regarded consortium of Catholic, Orthodox, and Protestant seminaries which offer cross-registration to their respective students).

Many years,

Neil


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Thanks Neil! If this is true, I hope to suggest something that will hopefully be helpful. The current situation is good enough to warrant some change.

Since St. Gregory exists on paper, I would like to suggest if the St. Gregory's on paper can expand itself at very minimal cost by becoming this:

A common Eastern Catholic institute specializing in distance education; offering relevant courses to Catholics who are interested in the Eastern Rite. The modus operandi will run along the lines of the St. Stephen's Antiochian course but this is its Catholic version, and caters to all Catholics of Eastern & Oriental rites. St. Gregory should specialize in distance education for Eastern Catholics.

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The AOHS St. Stephen's Course already fills the niche that it serves quite well for Orthodox and Catholic Byzantines. Since our resources are so few, I suggest that what we need is a distance-based M.Div. program to cultivate a pipeline of vocations for our Greek Catholic Churches. Perhaps the Melkites, Ukrainians or Ruthenians could undertake this piece?

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Then let St. Gregory's do that. I think the distance-learning MDiv would be a greater idea.

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I rather doubt that the financial resources exist for St Gregory's to undertake such a role, nor do I know that the staff exists to construct or serve the function. While our clergy are not stretched as thin as our Ruthenian or Ukrainian brethren, I don't know that we have many with the time to assume such roles in addition to their pastoral responsibilities (and I don't know how many have the necessary academic credentials to bring to such a task).

Many years,

Neil


"One day all our ethnic traits ... will have disappeared. Time itself is seeing to this. And so we can not think of our communities as ethnic parishes, ... unless we wish to assure the death of our community."
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This is a proposal that should happen in time. And well, since we are looking at the possibility of making every Eastern Catholic seminary "one-for-all", I'm sure that there will be advisors from amongst the various jurisdictions. We ARE Catholics anyways right?

Let us pray for this and foresee this with hope. God provides, irrespective of the situation. Parastou Kyrie!

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Originally Posted by Collin Nunis
Thanks Neil! If this is true, I hope to suggest something that will hopefully be helpful. The current situation is good enough to warrant some change.

Since St. Gregory exists on paper, I would like to suggest if the St. Gregory's on paper can expand itself at very minimal cost by becoming this:

A common Eastern Catholic institute specializing in distance education; offering relevant courses to Catholics who are interested in the Eastern Rite. The modus operandi will run along the lines of the St. Stephen's Antiochian course but this is its Catholic version, and caters to all Catholics of Eastern & Oriental rites. St. Gregory should specialize in distance education for Eastern Catholics.

Collin,

Brilliant idea. Worth pondering, IMHO. Just change the name to "Saint Gregory the Theologian Institute for Eastern Catholic Studies". If it is a pan-Byzantine effort, resources can multiply. And how many bishops, priests, deacons and laity out there have advanced degrees in theology? If a good distance learning infrastructure is created, it is a matter of designing the curriculum, finding the right medium and recording the talks, marketing and promotion, etc etc. Of course, gaining accreditation is a process unto itself! Affiliating with an existing institution is much better towards that end.

I have often thought that Catholic Distance University might be a good existing and accredited institution with which an effort like this could affiliate.

http://www.cdu.edu/

God bless,

Gordo

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Yeah of course... Every jurisdiction (Melkite, Ruthenian, Ukrainian, Syriac) should have an educational effort that caters to all Eastern and Oriental Catholics. In this case, St. Gregory is an initiative by the Melkites to cater to all Catholics.

As for affliation, there are countless distance learning providers that St. Gregory can link up with:

i) University of London (BDiv, structured by Heythrop College, a Jesuit college in UK)

ii)Melbourne Institute of Orthodox Christian Studies (linked with the University of Melbourne via the United Faculty of Theology).

iii) Institute of Orthodox Christian Studies, UK (Last i heard, this had some connection to Oxford University).

iv) Franciscan University of Steubenville - MA in Theology.

This is just some of the institutes which I browsed through. There are definitely more than what I have mentioned. And yes, CDU would be a good partner.

Hopefully this thread will materialize into a proposal which we can bring to our bishops. Someday.

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Call me bright eyed, but I think there are many people who would finicially support this effort. Unfortunatly, the only possible avenue at this time seems to actually get the money together, form the coordinating commitee, possibly even purchase the site. THEN a proposal MIGHT catch the attention of SOME Hierarchs.

Another piece of advice, do not let the land/buildings and such pass into the hands of any eparchy. A common seminary MUST be self-incoporated. Otherwise, we'd all again be in the same diaster we are in now.

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Hmm fair enough. That sounds like a plan.

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