Cardinal Brady initiated this ministry/service early in 1998 to facilitate/enhance routine and other communication between himself and our diocesan seminarians (in both directions). Regular contact, including visits to seminary bases, is maintained with all our seminarians (currently totalling six across two different locations, Maynooth and Rome). The scheme has developed well over the years and is used across a range of issues both by the diocese and seminarians.One key annual feature of the scheme is to arrange pastoral placements for all our seminarians in parishes of the diocese (usually during the summer vacation). Over twenty parishes have thus far hosted placements which are for up to four weeks.
Placements assist our seminarians with their ongoing formation and give them valuable insights into the general working of parishes and pastoral activities. They also help to promote vocations consciousness. Host clergy complete assessments of each placement (for diocesan use) while seminarians undertake evaluation exercises; verbatim reports etc set by the Seminarian Liaison Officer.
The placement scheme aims to give a seminarian a flavour of life in several parishes of the diocese over the course of his formation. Its value depends greatly on the approach of both seminarian and host parish. Feedback has been very positive.
The Seminarian Liaison Officer since this service began remains: