Do you have a Vocation to the Holy Priesthood or Religious Life?

Aspirants may apply by sending a “Letter of Application” to rector@stathanasiusseminary.org which includes a copy of Birth, Baptism and School Certificates. The formation council will review your application and invite you to come and see program.

At the “Come and See Program” together with you and through the Holy Spirit, we will begin to discern your vocation to serve God.

Upon acceptance, you will receive the Rite of Initiation during a Mass which will include vows.

You will receive an ecclesiastic license certificate and documentation of our Apostolic Succession.

Things to consider on your journey…

Where are you going and do you know how to get there? Here are four simple steps to help you find direction:

  1. Pray for direction, spend time in a quiet place.
  2. Talk with others, consider your gifts, seek direction from your pastor or priest, a parent, or a spiritual guide.
  3. Listen to your feelings — do you know where you find discomfort, or what brings you discouragement? Where do you find satisfaction? What brings you peace and joy?
  4. Above all, trust in who you are and know that God loves you and wants the best for you

Essential Requirements:

PERSONAL

  • Prayerful, maturing faith life in Jesus Christ.
  • Joyful embracing of the life of the Church and the Western Orthodox tradition.
  • Desire to serve in ordained ministry.
  • Love of sacramental life.
  • Awareness of the Church as a servant of reconciliation and healing.
  • Stable, maturing emotional life.

FORMATIONAL

  • Willingness to be formed in the ancient theological traditions.
  • Proof of any previous theological and pastoral training as well as secular studies.
  • Hearty honesty in a mentoring process.
  • Time for study and reflection.
  • Ability to understand basic theological materials and put them into pastoral practice.

SOCIAL

  • Capability to relate to people of many different backgrounds and lifestyles.
  • Consent of spouse/partner.
  • Proven financial stability and job security.
  • Two non-family references.
  • Responsible citizenship and no legal problems.

IF ALREADY ORDAINED/CERTIFIED CLERGY:

In addition to the above….

  • If possible, Letter of Transfer from present ecclesiastical authority.
  • Certificate/Diplomas of formation and training.
  • Ordination Certificate
  • Two references from people to whom you have ministered.
  • Willingness to discern how to effectively pastor in this tradition.

Some of our clergy have advanced theological degrees as well as advanced degrees in their chosen professions. Others are academically at a minimum but pastorally maxed out — they have doctoral degrees in living! Our clergy must be self-sustaining in the tentmaker style of Apostle Paul.

We have a Seminary Program to contact us today for more information:

IS CHRIST CALLING YOU TO SERVE HIM IN HIS CHURCH?

THE CALL

Truly the greatest vocation (calling) from God is to the same service that He Himself was committed to, as well as the Holy Apostles. Christ God was the first priest (High Priest) of the Christian Church that is viable today in the form of the Orthodox Catholic Church. Because He realized that His time on earth was limited he provided for the Church’s continuity by calling and ordaining the apostles to the Holy Priesthood and Episcopacy. Through these holy men the Church continues today with a valid and continuous Orthodox Christian priesthood. God calls each of us who have such a desire in a different way, i.e., some are called at an early age and others at a more mature age, and some realize the call right away while others have taken more time to accept. In order to make certain that deacons and priests are well prepared for such a sacred service it requires its candidates to complete ministry preparation and education through the Seminary. This can be done in residence or for those eligible through distance education.

TYPES OF ECCLESIAL VOCATIONS

People are called into Christ’s service through various activities and lifestyles within the Church. Women are called into the religious life as Nuns or Sisters. Men are called to be Monks, Subdeacons, Deacons or Priests. Those not wishing to be members of the clergy might be called to serve as Readers, Thurifers, or Cantors. Boys and men are often called to service as an acolyte or altar boy. The higher one wishes to aspire the more training and commitment is required.

THE PREPARATION FOR SERVICE

Although there exist St Athanasius Seminary that provide in-house and distance training, in Nigeria. Information on the various programs can be viewed at www.stathanasiusseminary.org where an application can also be found.

THE DAY OF ORDINATION

Ordinations are usually performed at St Ignatius of Antioch Parish, Makogi town in Ogun State, but may also be performed with permission in local dioceses and also in one’s own parish.

THE SERVICE TO HIS CHURCH

Nuns (Sisters) and Brothers often engage in teaching, healing, parish assistance, retreats, charitable apostolates, mission work, and all engage in prayer and living a life close to our Lord and the Holy Theotokos (Mother of God). There are many other things that these servants of the Lord engage in as well. One must always use their talents to best serve God and others.

Permanent or Transitional Subdeacons serve their Master by assisting at Divine Liturgy and by keeping clean the sacred utensils used for the celebration of the Liturgy and other services. They, too, are often involved in the corporal works of mercy and assist within the parish.

Permanent or Transitional Deacons are in major orders and belong to the first order of the Priesthood of which there are three: Deacon, Priest and Bishop. Once ordained they may only be released from what they have been given through the Church. Deacons assist at the Divine Liturgy and chant various litanies they are permitted to do. They often care for parishes without a priest serving the Typica, making visitations to the sick and suffering, and assisting priests in the distribution of Holy Communion. They may also do a variety of other assignments or services, e.g., teaching, preaching, leading in prayers and certain other services allowed. They also have the responsibility of maintaining cleanliness at the Holy Table and the Altar area and those furnishings within.

Priests administer six of the seven Holy Mysteries or Sacraments. They do not ordain as this is reserved to the Holy Episcopacy and the Bishops empowered to perform this Mystery. They serve as pastors and assistant pastors in parishes, as teachers and preachers, they may be found serving as chaplains in the military or hospitals or nursing homes or youth homes or in prisons. They offer the Divine Liturgy and other services of the Church. Some priests are engaged in parish or diocesan administration or serve on special councils of the Church. The mark of the priesthood remains forever once it is given by God through the Bishop, but for just cause the faculties (rights) can be taken away.

For more information contact us at rector@stathanasiusseminary.org and visit the website at www.stathanasiusseminary.org

Kindly Download this application and submit via email, bring the original copy with you when you come for interview or come and see program. Application to the Holy Priesthood