Mass for commencement of Parramatta’s seminary year

Our seminarians are given every support in this journey of personal transformation.
For the Mass in St Patrick’s Cathedral on 21 February, 13 seminarians joined their Rector Very Rev John Hogan, Very Rev Peter Williams, Deacon Willy Limjap and Very Rev Bob Bossini, Dean of St Patrick’s Cathedral. Photos: Alphonsus Fok.

Catholic Outlook, Volume 19, March 2016

Mass for the commencement of the year for the Seminary of the Holy Spirit was celebrated on 21 February. The Diocesan Administrator, Very Rev Peter Williams, presided at the Mass in St Patrick’s Cathedral in Parramatta.

Seminarians (from left): Tom Green, Jack Elkazzi and David Sebastian.

Seminarians (from left): Tom Green, Jack Elkazzi and David Sebastian.

To view a gallery of photos from the Mass click here.

“I was pleased to welcome two young men, Tom Green and David Sebastian, who are beginning the process of discernment that will hopefully lead them to the ministerial priesthood,” Fr Peter said. “They join 11 fellow seminarians in various stages of formation who will, in time, be the future priests of our Diocese.”

Seminarians for the Diocese of Parramatta are: Chris del Rosario, Jack Green, Joe Murphy, Andrew Rooney, Shinto Francis, Adam Carlow, Matthew Dimian, Galbert Albino, Jack Elkazzi, Jessie Duan Balorio, George Stanton, Tom Green and David Sebastian.

Situated in cosmopolitan Harris Park, the seminary is centred on historic Kenilworth House. The heritage-listed Italianate building has been restored to its former glory to meet the needs of the growing cohort of seminarians.

The construction of accommodation for up to 22 seminarians is well under way and due to be completed in coming months. In the meantime, seminarians share accommodation in several rented homes nearby.

The precinct will also include residential facilities for retired priests and is located adjacent to St Oliver Plunkett Parish, Harris Park.

In general, the formation of a Catholic priest takes seven years. This may seem like a long time but it goes by quite quickly. It’s true that there is much to learn in theology, philosophy and associated subjects. Just as import is the development that occurs within the individual to help in their personal and spiritual maturity. This is a slow but rewarding process.

The entry procession in St Patrick’s Cathedral.

The entry procession in St Patrick’s Cathedral.

Our seminarians are given every support in this journey of personal transformation. It is a shared endeavour and the seminarians can count on one another for help in this work.

With the years in seminary and the close living that is experienced, the men form friendships that continue after ordination as a support throughout priesthood.

As seminarians come to recognise more deeply that Christ is the unifying principle of their lives as individuals and their common life together, they devote themselves more wholeheartedly in the brotherhood of disciples sharing the one vision.

If you feel as though God might be calling you to the priesthood, the Diocese welcomes the opportunity to help you with your discernment. The Director of Priestly Vocations, Rev Warren Edwards, is the first point of contact. Fr Warren is always available to listen, offer guidance and explain the four-step admissions process:

  • Inquiry;
  • Discernment;
  • Aspirancy; and
  • Recommendation and acceptance.

To find out more about priesthood in the Diocese of Parramatta, give Fr Warren a call on 0409 172 700 or send him an email

For more information, visit the Vocations section of the Diocese of Parramatta’s website.

Every third Thursday of the month at 7pm a holy hour takes place in St Patrick’s Cathedral to pray for vocations. This is a time of prayer and reflection before the Blessed Sacrament in adoration and concluding with benediction.

Dates for holy hours in 2016: 17 March, 21 April, 19 May, 16 June, 21 July, 18 August, 15 September, 20 October and 17 November.

St Patrick’s Cathedral is at 1 Marist Place, Parramatta.


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