Saint John's seminary opened its doors in May 1884, with room for 100 seminarians and was staffed by Sulpicians from Paris and Baltimore.
In 1960 there were over 500 students enrolled between the college and the major seminary and 47 men were ordained to the priesthood.
In recent years, enrollment has increased dramatically from 42 men in 2006 to over 100 in 2011.
Saint John’s Seminary is a strong and growing community, committed to helping build up the body of Christ through the education and formation of seminarians. We are a community that strives to foster formation in accordance with the four pillars: Intellectual, Spiritual, Pastoral and Human. Our community, made up of faculty, staff and seminarians represents the universal Church in being both diverse and unified. We have seminarians studying for 10 dioceses, three religious orders, including the Oblates of the Virgin Mary, Franciscans of Primitive Observance and the Order of Saint Benedict, as well as seminarians from the Neocatechumenal way studying for the Archdiocese of Boston.
Our intellectual formation is fostered by programs in philosophy and theology. In addition, there are many opportunities through the year to participate in various conferences, both at the seminary and in nearby institutions. As a member institution of the Boston Theological Institute, our seminarians are able to take electives at Harvard, Boston University and Boston College.
The location of the seminary provides easy access to many pastoral settings for formation. Seminarians serve in hospitals, universities, prisons, and many parishes both in the Archdiocese of Boston and in other surrounding dioceses.
Human formation is provided both formally and informally. There are many organized presentations throughout the academic year. There are also various activities such as an intramural football tournament which are organized by the students. These opportunities are both an opportunity for the growth of fraternity and friendship, but also a sign that as the community has continued to grow, so have the bonds which hold it together.
While there are many facets to who we are, the primary focus through which everything else must be understood, is the love of Christ, centered on the Eucharist, which is the reason for the seminary’s existence.