I’ve been deliberating since Wednesday about how to begin writing about the seminary visitation in light of my experiences as a former seminarian. I’ve decided that I will begin by explaining a bit about where I am coming from, because if I do not (and maybe even if I do) I will likely be tagged as a reactionary conservative with an ax to grind about my time in the Saint Paul Seminary. So, this weekend, I will write a post with a bit of history about my seminary experiences, what I’ve learned from them, and then I can move on by looking at the Instrumentum Laboris.
Of course I come to this project with biases. I am a human subject, not a tape recorder. I wouldn’t be honest if I didn’t say that my years in seminary were painful but a time of grace as well. It’s a difficult thing to look with the sober eyes of charity at an institution that, in many ways, I feel has been failing to serve the Church with an undivided heart. But let he who has an undivided heart cast the first stone.
Forgiving some of the members of the institution is a slow process, but one that I am personally committed to. The human condition is messy, and being honest about it is at times a bit painful. But it is also liberating, if we believe in the mercy of God.
My point in writing about the seminary is not to engage in a witch hunt or a personal vendetta. For the most part, I won’t be naming individuals, as the goal is not to engage in detraction but to bring some problems to light, with the hope that things can change by being assessed with honesty and charity.
I’d appreciate your prayers for wisdom and prudence.