Seminary Application Process | Diocese of Lansing

Seminary Application Process

Do you feel that it is time to take the next step in discernment?

Be not afraid! When you call our office, ask to speak with Fr. John Linden and explain that you are interested in learning more about going to seminary. Fr. John will then try and get to know you better by asking about your prayer life, your background and other questions.


Humble Men of God

Acceptance into the Diocese requires that a candidate demonstrate emotional maturity, academic ability, personal and psychological stability and consistent growth in the practice of the faith.  Good discernment will require that a man strives for holiness and humility.  The process of application encourages the candidate to realize that his vocation does not simply enjoy a personal dimension but rather flows from the Church and toward a ministry within the Church.  In this regard, no one has a "right" to ordination but rather is called by God and by the Church.  He is called to give himself away as Christ has and become a man for others.

Inquiry Stage: A man does not need to know with absolute clarity that God is calling him to the priesthood before making contact with his pastor or the Director of Seminarians.  The discernment process lasts until the very day that a man is ordained, if indeed he is ever ordained.  The time for inquiry arrives when a man simply has an inclination that God may be calling him to the priesthood.

Moving Forward: After an initial contact with the Director of Seminarians and with continued thoughts that he may be called to consider the priesthood, he will then have an extensive interview with the Director.   This interview will include an exploration of the man’s thoughts about priesthood and the reasons for his belief that he may be “called,” as well as an exploration of his life past and present. 

Application Process: With the director’s approval, the potential candidate will then begin the application process. 

The application process will include but not be limited to:

a. The completion of a Diocesan application booklet
b. Various letters of recommendation
c. A thorough psychological evaluation and a background check 
d. A physical and dental examination
e. Transcripts of grades from applicable institutions 
f. Sacramental certificates 

Once all of the materials and evaluations have been gathered, the Director of Seminarians will then determine if the process should continue. If he says yes, the candidate meets with the Bishop. The Bishop will then give his recommendation to the Director of Seminarians for acceptance or denial of the candidate.

College Men

If the man does not yet possess a bachelor’s degree, he will be simultaneously completing an application for the college seminary.The Director of Seminarians will inform the seminary of the diocese’s readiness to sponsor the man as a Lansing seminarian. 

Pre-Theologians

If the man has previously completed a bachelors degree, he will need to meet with a Diocesan Review Board to determine his readiness as a priestly candidate. Upon acceptance, the Bishop and the Director of Seminarians will decide which seminary the candidate will attend.

The Process of Acceptance: With guidance from the Bishop and the leadership of the Diocesan Director of Seminarians major emphasis is placed on discernment assistance, formation, and the evaluation of men interested in preparing for priesthood.  The goal of the Diocese as set by our Bishop is to prayerfully and carefully select men who are being called by God to the ordained priesthood in order to help build up the Kingdom of God.


Contact our Vocations Director for more information:

Fr. John Linden
Director of Seminarians
Diocese of Lansing
228 North Walnut Street, Lansing, MI 48933
E-mail: Reverend John Linden
Phone: 517-342-2507