Forming priests as missionary disciples

Photo: Mateus Campos Felipe-Unsplash

JOHOR BAHRU — The Catholic Bishops’ Conference of Malaysia is requesting feedback from the people of God in order to form prophetic and servant priests, community pastors, critical thinkers and theologians in the Malaysian context.

Since 2013, the Malaysians Bishops decided to unify the two major seminaries that is, College General (CG) in Penang, and St Peter’s College (SPC) in Kuching.

Their desire was to streamline and integrate the whole priestly formation process, as well as to enhance the mutual ties and collaboration — especially now that there exists a significant presence of Sabahans and Sarawakians in Semenanjung. The two major seminaries henceforth function as one National Seminary where the seminarians undergo Philosophy studies in CG, and Theology studies in SPC.

In a letter signed by Bishop Richard Ng, the chair for Seminary Formation, he explains the goal, which is to:

i. Develop the seminary to sense the vision of the larger Malaysian Church, as yeast in society and to be a national institution of excellence.

ii. “Cast wide the net,” by networking widely and accompanying young people in new ways, together with our diocese vocation directors; and to help them discover and grow in their unique vocation stories.

iii. Promote reciprocal understanding and accountability between the community and the ministerial priesthood and strengthen the shared responsibility for the seminary and formation of priests.

Feedback is requested for the following questions:

1. What kind of priests do you want to see in our parishes and dioceses, particularly in our Malaysian context?

2. Can you suggest ways to help our seminarians to be formed to achieve the above goal?

3. How can lay people be involved in the formation of future priests?

The reflections are to be submitted by June 30 via email to or to your parish priest.

Herald Malaysia


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