Spiritual Formation at Mount St. Mary's Seminary follows the vision and guidance of Popes John Paul II and Benedict XVI concerning the priesthood. Each of them has given direction and encouragement to proper spiritual preparation for worthily and evangelically living the mystery of Christ's priesthood in the Church. A rich liturgical life, an appreciation of and commitment to the development of a life of prayer, spiritual direction, and love for the Church are essential elements of the Spiritual Formation Program. This program cooperates with the growth in intellectual, human and pastoral formation.
Pope Benedict XVI observes in Deus Caritas Est that "the good pastor must be rooted in contemplation." His Holiness' observation is directed towards its pastoral application: "The faithful expect only one thing from priests that they be specialists in promoting an encounter between man and God…[the priest] is expected to be an expert in the spiritual life" (Address to priests, Warsaw 5/25/06).
Life in the Seminary is fundamentally about coming to know Christ personally and intimately, communally and sacramentally. To encounter Him truthfully, the seminarian must know the Lord as the Church knows Him. Our sacramental system does not shy away from the idea that we receive this Christ- even into our bodies. There is a true and profound intimacy realized. It is this relationship that is to be essentially formative and intimately transformative in the life of the seminarian.
At Mount St. Mary's Seminary our hope and goal is to help the seminarian make this Christological-ecclesial relationship the central focus of his life, so that his relationship with Christ becomes the animating principle of his priestly life and ministry.
In addition to the prayer life as built into the horarium and the formation conferences there are spiritual life conferences, days of recollection, retreats and the meeting with one's spiritual director on a monthly basis.
Msgr. Frank Lane serves as the full-time resident House Spiritual Director, and there are a number of outside directors to ensure each seminarian has the opportunity to deepen his own commitment to Christ and to His Church.