Ensuring that the young men who are studying to become priests are well-educated and properly formed for the Priesthood is among the most important responsibilities of a bishop.
That’s why Bishop Alfred Schlert makes it a practice to visit St. Charles Borromeo Seminary near Philadelphia regularly, including his formal Annual Visit, which took place March 14.
At his annual visit, Bishop Schlert speaks with seminary officials about each of the Diocese of Allentown’s seminarians, to get an update on their progress.
There are now 15 men studying for the Priesthood from the Diocese of Allentown.
Bishop Schlert also meets with the men as a group during the day, and takes their questions. Then, he sets aside time for one-on-one meetings for any seminarian who wants to meet with him on any topic.
In his comments to the seminarians, Bishop Schlert shared updates on the progress of the Synod of Bishops, and the many listening sessions conducted around the Diocese which are already bearing fruit. He also mentioned some upcoming events for the Year of the Real Presence like the Eucharistic Congress this Saturday (3/19), which the seminarians will attend.
The Bishop thanked the seminarians for their diligent work in pastoral, spiritual, and academic formation at St. Charles and he expressed gratitude to the faculty and staff for providing an excellent environment for the men from the Diocese of Allentown to discern and to grow in their understanding of the Priesthood.
Founded in 1832, Saint Charles Borromeo Seminary has been forming men for priestly service in the Catholic Church for more than 180 years. In 2020, the seminary reported an overall enrollment of 154 seminarians.
The Archdiocese of Philadelphia has sold the seminary property to Main Line Health, and hopes to welcome seminarians in 2024 to a new campus on a portion of the Gwynedd Mercy University property.
In photo above, Bishop Schlert, center, and Father Mark Searles, diocesan Director of Vocations, with Allentown Diocese seminarians at St. Charles Borromeo Seminary.