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Theologate

St. Joseph's Catholic Major Seminary, Yangon

History


            St. Joseph’s Catholic Major Seminary, Institute of The­ology, is the third Institute of priestly formation ever to be es­tablished on the soil of Myanmar. Since September 1,1957, the day of its inception, it has been providing priests for all the Archdioceses and Dioceses of the Catholic Church in Myanmar.

In 1769, Bishop Giovanni Maria Percoto, a Barnabite, started an educational institution in Monhla which aimed at training catechists and, if possible, priests. It was then moved to Nabet in the year 1780. There was no record of any suc­cess in the courageous effort of this distinguished Barnabite.

Another Barnabite, Fr. San Germano, founded a col­lege for boys in Yangon. By 1783, three priests were ordained for the Church in Myanmar. These were Fr. Joseph Maung Gyi of Chaung U, Fr. Andrew Ko of Chanthaywa and Fr. Ignatius de Britto of Yangon. These priests were the first and the last to graduate from this college.

Since then up to 1957, priests from Myanmar were all trained at the General College of St. Joseph in Penang, Ma­laysia. The Bishops of Myanmar had read correctly the signs of the time and under the leadership of His Grace the Most Rev. Victor Bazin, M.E.P., the first Archbishop of Yangon, de­cided to open a Major Seminary in Myanmar itself. This decision proved to be providential a few years later, when send­ing of seminarians to Penang became impossible.

The foundation of the National Major Seminary was laid by His Eminence Valerian Cardinal Graciàs, Archbishop of Bombay, on February 4, 1956. Originally, it was set up to offer courses in Philosophy as well as in Theology. In 1983, the Catholic Bishop’s Conference of Myanmar received a di­rective from Rome allowing the separation of the two sections due to lack of proper accommodation.

1984-85 was the first academic year of this Institute as “Institute of Theology”, of the National Major Seminary.

The National Major Seminary, Institute of Theology, was founded for the exclusive purpose of educating candidates for the priesthood of the Catholic Church. Its responsibility, therefore, encompasses the spiritual, intellectual, human and pastoral formation of its students. The academic courses comprise of four years of pro­fessional study with almost total concentration on Theology and allied disciplines.  The Congregation for the Catholic Education has conceded the Affiliation to this seminary on 20th March 2006 to the Faculty of Theology of Pontifical Urbaniana University, Vatican City. The Affiliation is been granted by the above mentioned ministry " ad quinquennium esperimenti gratia". Those students who have completed the courses required and have passed the examinations will be offered Bachelor Degree in Theology. The students, after four years of formation in this Semi­nary, are supposed to have undergone adequate training which is broadly classical in scope and scientific in method.

At the end of the four years of professional study, the students return to their respective Archdioceses and Dioceses, where their Ordinaries will decide on the questions of their vocation and priestly ordination. (http://www.sjcms-mm.urbaniana.edu/pages/present.htm)

ADDRESS


    St. Joseph's Catholic Major Seminary
    14,Malikha Road,
    Mayangon Township,P.O.
    Yangon, Myanmar.
    Tel:       +95 1 662771   
                 +95 1 660182
    Email: cmstheo@mptmail.net.mm
               sjcms-mm@urbaniana-edu
 
    Rector: Rev John Saw Yaw Yan