Saint Meinrad Seminary & School of Theology

Formation and Education for the Life of the Church

Settling Into Priesthood

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The Settling into Priesthood Program helps seminarians make a seamless transition into priesthood.

Facilitating the Transition into Ministry

The program begins in the fall after ordination with the transition facilitation process. A trained transition facilitator meets with the new priest, his pastor and the parish staff to identify particular challenges, strengths and opportunities for growth that the new priest can address during the on-campus workshop in the spring.

While the transition facilitator can conduct his work remotely through questionnaires and telephone interviews, the effectiveness of the Settling into Priesthood Program can be greatly enhanced by an on-site visit from the transition facilitator to the newly ordained priest's parish.

Workshop Session

The On-Campus Workshop

During the spring, the newly ordained priest participates in a workshop at Saint Meinrad with other new priests. This holistic program focuses on issues involving the transition period and adjustments from seminary to priesthood, including individual issues identified with the help of the transition facilitator.

The program emphasizes theological reflection, group interaction and pastoral expertise. Participants have access to the sacraments, monastic prayer, confession and physical fitness facilties. During the workshop each priest develops his personal plan for human, spiritual, intellectual and pastoral growth.


  • On-Campus Workshop with Transition Facilitation by phone: $1,225
  • On-Campus Workshop with Transition Facilitation on-site visit: $1,550
Managing a Successful Transition

The newly ordained priest undergoes a series of transitions from major seminary to parish life that lays a foundation for the future and provides a point of reference across a lifetime of ministry.

Were one to compare this transition into priestly ministry to other kinds of human experience, it might be like leaving home, graduating from school, beginning a career, getting married, and starting a family -- but all at once. In this day-long process, Fr. Richard Chiola leads participants in a discussion of the tasks and challenges, occasions of temptation, graces and discernments the newly ordained experiences in his first years of priesthood.

Personal Finance: Budgeting, Spending and Saving for Retirement

Like his parishioners, a priest needs to know how to manage his personal finances, spend less than he takes in and prepare financially for his retirement. In this session, certified financial planner Tricia Hollander-Henning takes workshop participants through the process of preparing personal monthly budgets and investment vehicles for retirement.

Homily Preparation for 2nd Sunday of Lent

That Sunday homily isn't going to write itself! Fr. Brendan Moss, OSB, spends some time with workshop participants on Wednesday afternoon to look over the scriptures for the upcoming weekend and discuss some possible themes and directions to take.

Income Taxes for Priests

If the U.S. tax code appears puzzling for the average American taxpayer, consider how much more so it can be for the clergy with their own special set of rules. What is taxable income for a priest? His salary? Stole fees? Stipends? Gift income? What about food, auto and insurance allowances? As a priest, are you paying your taxes quarterly? In this session, Cecelia "Siggi" Hamilton covers the tax code as it applies specifically to priests and answers any questions you have about your personal situation.

Creating Your Personal Growth Plan

Using the report generated from the Transition Facilitation process, workshop participants put together their personal growth plans moving forward into their priestly ministry. Where have you gotten off track in the four pillars of priestly formation? To what will you commit yourself to grow into the priest God has called you to be? Fr. Bill Bowling takes you through the process of envisioning what you need to do next. Growth plan coaches work with you in the afternoon to create an honest and achievable plan.

Dealing with Disappointment, Disillusionment and Discouragement

Every vocation experiences a cycle of "ups and downs," of "romance and disillusionment."  Dr. Ryan LaMothe leads the newly ordained through a shared experience of ministry in the first months following ordination - the "honeymoon" period - and guides new priests through strategies of how to deal well with what they can expect in the months and years ahead.

Quick, Simple, Healthy Cooking for One

More than a presentation, this dinner-preparation session is designed to help the workshop participant gain some strategies for preparing meals that are both good and good for the priest. Taking care of ourselves is good stewardship of our bodies and allows us to serve well those entrusted to our care. Beyond having the knowledge and experience to prepare meals well, simply finding time to cook can be a big challenge.

Note: The Settling Into Priesthood workshop is preceded by a visit from a Transition Facilitator.

Monday, February 18  
2:30 - 4:30 PM Registration
4:30 Evening Prayer, Social and Dinner
6:15 - 8:00 Welcome, Orientation and Evening Discussion
8:00 Jack's in the Commons Coffee Shop (optional)
Tuesday, February 19   
7:30 AM Breakfast
8:30 - 11:15 Program Session - Managing a Successful Transition
11:30 Mass
Noon Lunch
1:00 - 2:00 PM Sacrament of Penance and Reconciliation
2:15 - 4:30 Program Session - Managing a Successful Transition (Cont.)
5:00 Evening Prayer, Social and Program Session - Quick, Simple, Healthy Cooking for One
7:00 - 8:00 Program Session - Managing a Successful Transition - Q&A 
Wednesday, February 20  
7:15 AM Mass with Seminarians
8:00 Breakfast
8:45 - 11:30 Program Session - Personal Finance: Budgeting, Spending and Saving for Retirement
Noon Lunch
1:00 - 2:00 PM Program Session - Homily Preparation for 2nd Sunday of Lent
3:00 - 4:30 Program Session - Income Taxes for Priests
5:00 Evening Prayer with Monastic Community (optional)
5:30 Dinner
Thursday, February 21  
7:00 - 8:30 AM Breakfast
8:45 - 11:15 Program Session - Creating Your Personal Growth Plan
11:30 Mass
Noon Lunch
2:00 - 4:30 PM Program Session - Individual Meetings with Personal Growth Plan Coaches
5:00 Evening Prayer with Monastic Community (optional)
5:30 Dinner
Friday, February 22  
7:30 AM Mass
8:00 - 8:30 Breakfast
8:30 - 11:15 Program Session - Dealing with Disappointment, Discouragement and Disillusionment: Facilitated Dialogue with Transitional Deacons
11:30 Evaluations and Announcements
Noon Lunch

Monday, Febrary 18 - Friday, February 22, 2013


Settling Into Priesthood is $1,550 with personal visit Transition Facilitation, or $1,225 with phone call Transition Facilitation. Included:

  • Transition Facilitation process
  • Four (4) nights accommodations in St. Bede Hall
  • All meals from Monday supper through Friday lunch
  • All program fees and material costs
To Register
After Registering
  • The Institute will assign to you one of your prefered Transition Facilitators.
  • You, your pastor, and the assigned parish staff member complete and submit the following questionnaires
  • The Transition Facilitator will call to schedule his meeting(s) with the questionnaire respondents.
  • Following the meeting(s), the Transition Facilitator generates and provides report.
  • Bring facilitator's report to workshop for creating your Personal Growth Plan.