SJV Welcomes 24 New Seminarians to Begin Spirituality Year

Sunday, August 16th marked the beginning of another year for seminarians at St. John Vianney Theological Seminary. And while some seminarians made the drive back to SJV on Sunday for the seventh time, some made it for just the first time.

SY Move-In 2015-1

New seminarians arriving at the Spirituality Year house.

But for those who have just begun their seminary journey, the drive up can be somewhat daunting.

“First impressions mean a lot,” remarked Fr. Jim Thermos, the director of the Spirituality Year, “especially when one is a bit nervous about arriving in a new environment.” Spirituality Year is the first year of seminary formation for all men who attend St. John Vianney.

For this reason, the seminarians who have been in SJV always take it upon themselves to make a good first impression. Every summer, as a new Spirituality Year class arrives, the rest of the seminarians come out and assist these men move into their house.

SY Move-In 2015-2

Current SJV seminarians help the new SY men get checked in at the SY house. (Pictured, L-R: Brian Pavey, Spirituality Year, Phoenix; Jonathan Hantsbarger, Spirituality Year, Denver; Frankie Cicero, 3rd Theology, Phoenix)

“Most of us at SJV have been through the Spirituality Year,” explains Christopher Gossen, a First Theologian studying for the Diocese of Phoenix. “You have men from all different walks of life, in different stages, some have been in seminary previously and others not; and we know what the first day of SY can be like. There is a great feeling inside of a new man at the seminary when he sees all of his brothers helping him unload the car and taking his things to his new room.”

“When they arrive and see warm welcoming faces,” adds Fr. Thermos, “they grow in confidence that God has led them to a very good place.”

This year, 24 young men have been accepted into the 2015-2016 Spirituality Year at SJV. They represent nine different dioceses around the world, including Julius Lule, a seminarian for the Diocese of Kasana-Luweero in Uganda. They will spend this year specifically set apart, focusing on deepening their spiritual lives and acclimating to the life of the seminary.

SY Move-In 2015-4

Parents and new SY men hear a bit about SY from Deacon Andy Morrow (4th Theology, Helena).

The Rector, Fr. Scott Traynor, Fr. Thermos, and the entire seminary community asks for your prayers for these men and for all at SJV as they begin another year forming priests to serve the Archdiocese of Denver and other dioceses around the Western US.