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List of Roman Catholic seminaries

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Title: List of Roman Catholic seminaries  
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List of Roman Catholic seminaries

This is a list of Roman Catholic seminaries in the world, including those that have been closed. By the 2012 Pontifical Yearbook, the total number of candidates for the priesthood of the world is 118,990 at the end of the year 2010. These students are in 6,974 seminaries around the world; 3,194 diocesan seminaries and 3,780 religious seminaries.


Congo, Democratic Republic of




  • St. John Vianney Seminary, Barkin Ladi- Established in January 1958 by the late Right Rev. Dr. John Reddington for the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Jos.
  • Seat of Wisdom Seminary - Established in 1982; for the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Owerri
  • Seat of Wisdom Seminary (philosophy Campus) Ariam-Umuahia
  • Bigard Memorial Seminary, Enugu - A provincial seminary for the Onitsha ecclesiastical province, established in 1950.
  • St Albert the Great Idowu Ofonron Abeokuta, Ogun State
  • St Joseph Major Seminary Ikot Ekpene
  • St Thomas Aquinas Major Seminary Makurdi
  • Pope JohnPaul 11 Major Seminary, Awka
  • SS Peter and Paul, Bodija, Ibadan
  • All Saints Seminary, Ekpoma
  • Good Shepherd Major Seminary, Kaduna
  • Claretian Institute of Philosophy, Nekede
  • Spiritan International school of Theology, Attakwu
  • Spiritan Institute of Philosophy, Isienu
  • St Augustine Seminary, Jos
  • Blessed Iwene Tansi Major Seminary, Onitsha

South Africa

  • St John Vianney Seminary - Pretoria (National Seminary)


There are several Seminaries in Uganda divided into three; Junior, Minor and Major seminaries. Major seminaries

  • St. Mbaaga Gaba National, St. Mary's Gaba National
  • St.Thomas Aquinas Katigondo National Seminary
  • Alokulum National Seminary,
  • Kinyamasika National Seminary

Minor and Junior Seminaries



Argentina has 32 major seminaries.


  • Seminario Mayor San luis, Cochabamba.


By the 'Organización de Seminarios Latinoamericanos' (OSLAM), there are 429 seminaries in Brazil. The following list is by leading Ecclesiastical Provinces.


Belém do Pará

Belo Horizonte










Nova Friburgo

Olinda e Recife

Porto Alegre

São Paulo

São Salvador da Bahia

São Sebastião do Rio de Janeiro




British Columbia





Colombia has 50 major seminaries.


Dominican Republic




There are 66 seminaries in Mexico. This list is by main Ecclesiastical Provinces.


Antequera, Oaxaca









Puebla de los Angeles

San Luis Potosí




  • Seminario Mayor Nacional del Paraguay,[4] Asuncion


Puerto Rico

United States

According to the 2010 Official Catholic Directory, as of 2009 there are 189 seminaries with 5,131 students in the United States; 3,319 diocesan seminarians and 1,812 religious seminarians. By the official 2011 statistics, there are 5,247 seminarians (3,394 diocesan and 1,853 religious) in the United States.




District of Columbia












New Hampshire

New Jersey

New York

North Dakota




Rhode Island








New South Wales and Australian Capital Territory


South Australia

  • St Francis Xavier Seminary,Adelaide - closed 2001.

Victoria and Tasmania

Western Australia





Hong Kong


East Timor


  • Pacific Regional Seminary of St Peter Chanel,[11] Suva (founded 1962)




Israel and Palestinian Territories




New Zealand




  • St Francis Xavier Major Seminary,[15] - founded in 1983

South Korea

At the end of the year 2011, there are 7 major seminaries in Korea; and the number of seminarians in these seven seminaries is 1,587 — from diocesan 1,317, religious & missionary 270.

  • College of Theology, Catholic University of Korea - founded in 1855, currently located on the Songsin campus of Seoul; 'Songsin' means Holy Spirit in Korean.
  • Department of Theology, Gwangju Catholic University,[16] - founded in 1962, second oldest in Korea
  • College of Theology, Catholic University of Daegu[17] - founded by the Archdiocese of Daegu
  • Department of Theology, Catholic University of Busan[18] - also running the College of Nursing
  • Department of Theology, Daejeon Catholic University[19]
  • Department of Theology, Incheon Catholic University[20] - founded in 1995, also running the College of Religious Arts
  • Department of Theology, Suwon Catholic University[21] - founded in 1982


There are 8 major seminaries with 1,480 students in Vietnam.

And some minor seminaries:






Czech Republic


Ecclesiastical Province

Under the Holy See


By main Ecclesiastical Provinces:



Freiburg im Breisgau


Munich und Freising





  • All Hallows College was founded in 1842 and was placed under the direction of the Vincentians from 1892. It is now a college affiliated to Dublin City University. All Hallows trained priests exclusively for foreign dioceses, particularly those containing high numbers of Irish emigrants. Although it had previously indicated that it had merely 'suspended' its provision of formation, it was not included in the 2012 Apostolic Visitation after it indicated that it no longer offers a programme of priestly formation.[31]
  • Clonliffe College (Holy Cross College) - This was the major seminary of the Archdiocese of Dublin. It was founded in 1859[32] and opened in 1861. It closed as a seminary in June 2000. From the 1960s the programme for priestly formation lasted 7 years, the three initial years involved a degree in Philosophy in UCD (or in some cases, in Milltown) followed by a four year degree in Theology in Clonliffe.[33]
  • St. Brendan's, Killarney - secondary school founded in 1860 which also prepared seminarians for the priesthood.
  • Belmont House, Delgany in Co. Wicklow. The small size of Glenmary necessitated a move to larger premises and Belcamp Hall, Raheny became the Juniorate and the novitiate moved to Belmont.
  • St. Finbarr's College Cork - The former junior seminary for the Diocese of Cork and Ross, it closed in 2006.[34]
  • St Kieran's College, Kilkenny. Founded in 1782, this was Ireland's oldest major diocesan seminary. Enrolment reached a peak in 1957 with 140 seminarians, many of whom were intending to join North American and British dioceses. Priestly formation was discontinued in 1994 and the College is now a Secondary School.[35]
  • St. Malachy's College - including St. Joseph's Seminary; diocesan seminary for the Diocese of Down and Connor
  • St. Patrick's, Carlow College - founded in 1782 as a college for both lay students and seminarians, it opened its doors in 1793. The delay in accepting students was due to resistance from the local Protestant Bishop, but the passing of the Relief Act of 1792 obviated the need for his permission. From 1892 the college operated only as a seminary, the lay students having been transferred to a new College in Knockbeg. Lay students were readmitted in 1989. In 1990s priestly formation was discontinued there.
  • St Patrick's College, Maynooth - national seminary for Ireland, established in 1795. The early growth of Maynooth was aided by the fact that unlike the other seminaries then active, Maynooth was grant-aided by the British Government until the passing of the Irish Church Act 1869, meaning that many students did not have to pay fees.[35] Currently the one of largest seminaries in Europe, it has 72 students preparing for the priesthood.[36]
  • St. Patrick's College, Thurles - Opened in 1837, exclusively a seminary from 1907 to 1988, ceased to function as a seminary in 2002, with the remaining seminarians completing their studies in Maynooth.[37] Now a primarily a College of Education with its degrees validated by the University of Limerick.
  • St Peter's College, Wexford - founded in 1811, seminary closed in 1999 due to the unsustainably low numbers threatening the quality of formation. The eight seminarians then in residence were transferred to other seminaries.[38] now solely a secondary school. The seminary wing of the College is now occupied by the Wexford campus of the Institute of Technology, Carlow. St. Peter's featured heavily in the Ferns Report into paedophilia in the Diocese of Ferns.[39]
  • St Vincent’s Seminary, Cork - once trained priests, later became a secondary school.
  • Cluain Mhuire, Galway - Redemptorist seminary, closed in the 1970s, the buildings now house the Art and Design and Film and Television sections of GMIT.[40]
  • Franciscan Novitiate, Killarney, Co. Kerry. Built in 1860, this college prepared students who were then usually sent to St. Anthony's in Galway, where many also took a degree in UCG. The building is now used as a Church-run Youth Centre.[41]
  • St. Anthony's College, Newcastle, Galway. Former Franciscan seminary, buildings now used by NUI, Galway.
  • Moyne Park, Abbeyknocknoy, Donovan.[49]
  • Dalgan House, Shrule, Co. Mayo.[50] A former landlords house built in 1801, and later bought by the Duke of Bedford in 1853 for Lady de Clifford, the wife of his first cousin. The house became a seminary for the missionary Society of St Columban in 1918 and remained so until the transfer of the seminary to Navan in 1941.[51] It is now demolished.
  • St. Columbans College, Dalgan Park, Navan is the seminary of the Society of St. Columban, having moved there from Dalgan, Co. Mayo in 1941.[51] Following much internal debate about whether funds should be spent on a seminary in China or Ireland, a decision was taken to purchase the Dowdstown estate outside Navan for £15,250 in 1926, and following a decade of fundraising a college was built there, opening in 1941.[52]
  • St. John's College, Waterford was founded in 1807 by Bishop John Power. Originally open to both lay students and seminarians, by 1873 it had become exclusively a seminary. In 1871 a new building was opened for the College on John's Hill, Waterford. The College closed in June 1999.[53]
  • Milltown Institute of Theology and Philosophy formed out of the Jesuit Theology Faculty, with the National University of Ireland validating its academic programmes.
  • Donamon Castle, Co. Roscommon. St Patrick's Noviciate of the Divine Word Missionaries, opened 1939, students transferred to Maynooth in 1980.[54] The castle remains the headquarters of the religious institute and the seminary building has been converted into a centre for disabled people ran by the Irish Wheelchair Association.[55]
  • Kilshane, Co. Tipperary. Novititate of Holy Ghost Fathers (the Spiritians).[56] Kilshane House was purchased in August 1933 and opened as a Novitiate for both clerics and brothers, able to accommodate 60 residents, novices and staff. Of the 1,771 entrants as clerical novices there in 50 years, 1,256 were professed.[57] Kilshane House is now a luxury hotel.
  • Kimmage Manor, Co. Dublin. Formation house of the Holy Ghost Fathers (the Spiritians). Students usually progressed here from Kilshane, where in addition to priestly formation they often took a degree at UCD. The College is now a retirement home for Priests, although it continues to provide a limited amount of formation for some of the Spiritians seminarians, few of whom are now Irish. Much of the land has been sold off for housing and the Seminary Chapel is now Holy Spirit Parish Church, Kimmage.[58] The College continues as the location of the Kimmage Development Studies Centre, established by the Spiritians in 1974 to train development professionals.[59]
  • Legion of Christ Novitiate, Lepordstown Road, Foxrock, Dublin. In April 1960, the Legion of Christ opened its first house in Bundoran, County Donegal, preparing the land for a new novitiate on Irish soil. On June 3 of 1962, with the support of the Holy See’s Nuncio in Ireland, Bishop Antonio Riberi, and the then archbishop of Dublin, John Charles McQuaid, the novitiate was inaugurated in Hazelbrook House, Malahide. The current Legionary novitiate has been located since 1968 on the Leopardstown road in Foxrock, Dublín.[60] The novitiate closed in September 2011 with the novices being transferred to other novitiates abroad.[61]
  • Kinury, near Westport, Co Mayo. A property was given to the SMA in 1914 by Miss Sofia Crotty. It was used as a Novititate for Brothers and closed in 1924,[62] which presumably coincided with the opening of Cloughballymore.
  • Cloughballymore, Ballinderreen, Kilcolgan, Co. Galway. Originally a tower house, Cloghballymore House was extended a number of times by the various families who held the estate over three centuries. In 1906 it was owned by Llewellyn Blake and was valued at £18. It was later given by him to a Society of the African Missions (SMA) and it was maintained as a novitiate into the mid 1970s, at which stage the novitiate transferred to Cork.[63] The linked Minor Seminary (a secondary school for those intending or considering ordination) at Ballinafad was bequated by Count Llewellyn Blake at the same time and operated until 1975. The building at Cloughballymore is still extant and has been used since 1981 as St. Columba's nursing home.[64]
  • Dromantine House, Newry Co. Down: Seminary of the Society of African Missions, 1926-1972. During that time about 600 priests werer ordained for service in Africa, until the decision was taken that from 1972 students would train at the National Seminary in Maynooth.[65]
  • St. Joseph's Seminary, Blackrock Rd, Cork. The original seminary of the Society of the African Missions, later transferred to Dromantine House.[66]
  • St. Augustine's College, Blacklion, Co. Cavan. Seminary of the White Fathers. Purpose- built, it was opened in September 1955 and closed in 1970, with the remaining students enrolling in University College Dublin.[67] The complex is now Loughan House, a low security open prison.
  • Coláiste Mhuire, Marino, Dublin. Teacher Training Centre of the Irish Christian Brothers. Christian Brothers took vows of celibacy but not all were ordained as Priests. Those that did attended formation between Marino and the nearby Clonliffe College.
  • Mungret College, situated 3 miles west of Limerick was a Jesuit apostolic school and a lay secondary school from 1882 until 1974 when it closed as a school for the last time. Mungret produced over 1000 priests in that period. It had previously been an agricultural college and a Limerick diocesan seminary until 1888. The secondary school was relatively small with around 225 boarders and 25 day boarders.
  • St. Helen's, Booterstown, Dublin. Headquarters and novitiate of the Irish Christian Brothers, 1925 until 1988. Now a hotel.
  • The Abbey, Loughrea, Co. Galway. A community of Discalced Carmelites has existed here since 1645, and with some gaps novices have been prepared here since 1664. In 1882 a new novitiate was constructed, and due to the increase in novices after the opening of a juniorate in Castlematyr, Co Cork in 1930, was extended in 1934. The Community remain active in this location,[68] while Castlematyr closed in 1996 and is now a hotel.[69]
  • Loughrea, Co. Galway contained a novititate of the De La Salle Brothers, which was active into the 1980s.[68]
  • Faithlegg House, Co. Waterford. Faithlegg remained in the Power family until 1935 when it was sold to the De La Salle religious institute who used it as a novitiate until the 1980s.[70] It is now Faithlegg House Hotel.[71]
  • St Stanislaus College, Tullabeg, Tullamore. This was the novitiate of the Jesuits in Ireland until the move to Emo Court in 1930.[72] It continued as house of study and retreat centre for many years and is now a nursing home.
  • St Mary's, Emo Court. In 1929, the Jesuits decided to look for a new novitiate house which would be suitably remote and peaceful. Emo Court seemed admirably suitable, and the deeds were signed on 19 February 1930, with the house and 280 acres purchased for £2000. Emo Court became known as St. Mary’s, Emo. The House was opened as the Novitiate of the Irish Province on 4 August 1930, and novices transferred from St Stanislaus’ College, Tullamore. There were 52 novices that year. In the 60s, it became apparent that St Mary’s was too isolated for the more modern ideas about training novices for work with the Society. The Novitiate moved to Manresa House in north Dublin, where novices could help in the work of retreats and in the running of boys’ clubs; they could easily go out to visit in hospitals, night shelters and homes for the elderly. In the late 60s, the number of Novices had diminished, so that in the final years at St Mary’s, there were 15 Novices, of whom 6 had dropped out during their two years training. This meant that it was exceedingly expensive to run the house for so few men, even with visitors coming to stay for various reasons. In September 1969, the Jesuits left Emo for Manresa House in Dollymount. Over 500 young men had begun their lives as Jesuits at Emo.[73]
  • Manresa House, Dollymount, Dublin. It served as the novitiate of the Irish Jesuits after the departure from Emo Court until 1991. It is now the location for the English-speaking Tertianship for Europe.
  • St Patrick's, Esker, Athenry, Co. Galway. St. Patrick’s, was established on 18 August 1901. For thirty-five years it was the major seminary of the Redemptorists Irish Province and from 1948 until 1969 it was the novitiate. In 1971 the former novitiate was opened as a retreat house.
  • Pallotine College Thurles, Co. Tipperary, was founded by the Pallotines in 1907, from 1909 to 1986 priests from the college would have studied at the nearby St. Patrick's College, Thurles.
  • St Gabriels, The Graan, Enniskillen, Co. Fermanagh. Novitiate of the Passionists, 1909 - 1976. The Novitiate building is now a nursing home, although a community of Passionists remain onsite.
  • Tobar Mhuire, Crossgar, Co. Down – previously known as Crossgar House - was bought by the Passionists from Colonel Lwellan Palmer in 1950. It became the home of the Order's Juniorate until 1976, when it became the novitiate. It was relaunched as a Retreat & Conference Centre in February 2010 Tobar Mhuire a Sacred Space in the Heart of Co. Down.
  • St. Paul's Retreat, Mount Argus, Dublin. As well as being the headquarters of the Irish Passionists, Mount Argus also provided the final two years of formation for Passionist seminarians.
  • Tanagh, Cootehil, Co. Cavan. Former novitiate and seminary of the Congregation of the Sacred Hearts, now an outdoor education centre, although a small community of religious live onsite.
  • Mount St. Marys, Milltown, Dublin. Seminary of the Marist Fathers. The site now houses a Montessori College and the administrative headquarters of the Irish Marists.
  • St. Finian's College was founded in Navan as the Meath Diocesan College in 1802. It is now a boys secondary school, and since 1970 Schola Cantorum a music school.


The list includes some seminaries by principal Ecclesiastical Provinces.
























Slovakia has 5 seminaries with 240 students in 2010.



Spain has 77 seminaries.



United Kingdom

The currently active major seminaries of the United Kingdom are in England.





  • St Mary's College, Aberystwyth, originally in Holywell, moved to Aberysterwyth in 1936, closed in 1970, for Welsh-speaking training, run by the Carmelites

See also


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