Programme

Other Dioceses and Allen Hall

Allen Hall is the seminary of the Diocese of Westminster, but also welcomes seminarians from other dioceses. In recent years, seminarians from dioceses including Nottingham, Portsmouth, Lancaster, Oslo and Helsinki have have been in formation here.

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Religious Communities and Allen Hall

The Allen Hall community includes a number of novices and students from religious communities. The seminary programme is flexible, and the Rector and Formation Team work with Novice Masters and Religious Superiors to agree the most suitable formation for each individual.

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Formation Overview

When a man arrives at Allen Hall – either from the Diocese of Westminster or one of the other dioceses or religious orders which send men to Allen Hall – he begins a six-year period of formation for the priesthood. The word ‘formation’ is significant. This time is not just about ‘studying’ or ‘training’ for the priesthood, it is about growing to become more like Christ the Good Shepherd – it involves the whole person.

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Human Formation

The priest is someone who stands for Christ himself. The call to priesthood evokes the response “Here I am Lord – I come to do your will.” In formation a special time of conversion takes place, a conversion of mind and heart and spirit, so that the seminarian will grow to be more and more like Christ.

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Intellectual Formation

The model for intellectual life at Allen Hall is to be found in the example of Christ Himself: “As he stepped ashore he saw a large crowd; and he took pity on them because they were like sheep without a shepherd, and he set himself to teach them at some length.”

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Spiritual Formation

Each Christian stands in a unique relationship with God, and is called to further and deepen that relationship in his or her life through prayer and study, and expressed in the service and love of others.

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Pastoral Formation

In John’s Gospel Jesus describes himself as the ‘Good Shepherd’, indicating that sacrificial love and pastoral care are at the centre of his heart: “The Good Shepherd is one who lays down his life for his Sheep.”

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