As I begin my service as your rector, I reflect this morning on the wise words of the Program of Priestly Formation:
“The rector, always a priest, serves as the pastor of the seminary community. He sets the direction and tone of the seminary program. By creating a climate of mutual confidence and trust, he elicits the full cooperation and involvement of faculty and students...
“The rector serves as chief administrative officer and principal agent responsible for the implementation of the seminary program. He should also maintain close contact with the bishops and religious ordinaries of the dioceses and religious institutes or societies that the seminary serves. In addition, he is often responsible for public relations and development, though he may delegate these tasks to others. Although these duties may call him away from the seminary, it is important that the rector serve as leader of the internal life of the seminary both as pastor and priestly model.
“The spiritual and personal welfare of faculty and students is a central responsibility of the rector. Regularly, the rector should give conferences to the seminary community. He should frequently preside at prayer and at the Eucharist.
“As provided for other members of the faculty, the rector should be carefully prepared in sound doctrine, suitable pastoral experience and special spiritual and pedagogical training. The rector should be a model of priestly virtue, able to live himself the qualities he encourages in students. A man of sound and prudent judgment, the rector should give evidence to a love of and dedication to the Church’s service.”
Program of Priestly Formation for the Dioceses of the United States of America [fifth edition] nos. 318-322, excerpted.
Pray that God might give me the grace to be a good rector. a good pastor to you all.