Beginning this school year, St. Patrick’s Seminary has implemented a monthly work period for the seminarians. The intentions of this work period are to help build fraternity and to allow seminarians to actively contribute to improving our living spaces. One of the additional benefits of this effort is that it allows the seminarians to grow in pastoral formation. As future administrators and pastors of parishes, we will be responsible for assuring the well-being of the various buildings in our charge. As future priests, we must also be willing to ‘get our hands dirty’ through manual labor. Many of our future parishioners work diligently sacrificing to provide for their families. As future pastors it is important that we also develop this skill and openness to manual labor. 

Each month the seminarians split up into several groups to tackle various projects that benefit the community. Those projects usually consist of gardening or cleaning. Recent projects have included dusting and polishing the woodwork in the chapel, maintaining the gardens on either side of the main entrance to the seminary building and the Convent, and filling holes on the soccer field. These projects are ones that benefit the entire community. The center of the seminary’s life is the chapel since everything we do flows from the Holy Mass. Each day the seminary welcomes visitors, and it is thus important to present a good first impression. Additionally, as we maintain our spiritual well-being, it is important to care for our bodies through physical activity. 

contributed by Mr. John Pietruszka (Theology IV), Diocese of Oakland