Saint Mark's Seminary
Santa Fe, New Mexico
Located on ancient Keres Indian land where in 1620 the first Franciscans established the "Cappella San Marco" mission, we now have established our St. Mark's Seminary for the training of our clergy and formation of our members in our religious Order of Celtic Franciscans. Combined with the hybrid spiritual formation tracks with Baylor~Truett Seminary or Notre Dame~McGrath Institute, a short residence practicum phase is completed at our working ranch/friary in the beautiful high desert of Santa Fe, New Mexico to complete the path to Ordination.
Once Ordained we follow up with what we call Front-Line Chaplaincy training to prepare and equip our bi-vocational Priests and Deacons for work in the real world. Our Chaplains at present serve on the "Front Lines" with and in the military, police, schools , prisons, hospitals, hospices, providing spiritual care wherever and whenever we are called. Simply said , we are ministers of availability!
St. Mark's also hosts one day or weekend small group Ecumenical and Inter Faith retreats, when scheduling permits, for Military, National Guard and Reserve, Hospital, Police and other Chaplain corps. With our unique cadre composition of Priests and Deacons being prior military or law enforcement St. Mark's Seminary is characterized as bringing into ministerial and pastoral focus the essential elements necessary for Front Line Chaplaincy of authenticity, relevance and compassion.
Seminary & Formation
For Ordination or Incardination (if already ordained) we begin with our Certificates in Celtic Spirituality and Franciscan Spirituality (required). These self-paced/proctor assisted programs are designed to be done at home, prior to or with agreement by St. Mark’s Dean, concomitant to the Certificate of Christian Foundation and the Certificate of Ministry with our partner Baylor University’s Truett Theological Seminary for our Holy Orders candidates with no former seminary or theological training. These certificate bearing courses may also qualify as the Independent Study Electives necessary for the Baylor University-Truett Theological Seminary Certificate of Ministry, which is the basis of and can be part of our own M.A. in Ecumenical Ministry.
The second option that we accept for spiritual foundation is through a partnership with Notre Dame University- McGrath Institute Certificate in Catholic Theology and the concentration in their STEM offering of Scripture and Liturgy. For either option, our Residency phase at St. Mark's will be required for completion of Holy Orders and Ordination .
Why Baylor-Truett Seminary for Celtic Franciscan Catholics?
In our spirit of ecumenism, we selected Baylor-Truett as it provides our bi-vocational seminarian candidates for Holy Orders, with little or no previous theological studies or academic credentialing, a robust exploration of Scripture and Christian spiritual formation. Its academic structure and level of recognized theological scholarship, at a realistic cost were unsurpassed in our national search. As bi-vocational Celtic Franciscan Friars and clergy who are working or will be working essentially in Chaplaincy or similar interrelated ministries, our partnership and collaboration with Baylor-Truett was the most cost effective, theologically sound academic and ministerial credentialing program available online today. It also provides us from a Celtic Catholic perspective to have a built-in comparative religious look at a study of Protestant/Evangelical doctrine that serves us well as we administer "Spiritual First-Aid" in the conduct of Ecumenical Ministry and Chaplaincy.
As mentioned above, once completed, our Certificate in Celtic Spirituality and the Certificate in Franciscan Spirituality awarded by St. Mark’s, may also serve as two Independent Study electives for the Baylor-Truett Certificate of Ministry required course of study.
The essence of our rich Celtic Catholic Spirituality will begin with several key books:
“Listening for the Heartbeat” of God” J. Philip Newell
“Christ of the Celts” J. Philip Newell
“How the Irish Saved Civilization” Thomas Cahill
“The Celtic Way of Evangelization" George Hunter
“Journey’s on the Edges: The Celtic Tradition” Thomas O’Laughlin
Our Certificate in Franciscan Spirituality will also be proctor led with a rich selection of works on St. Francis as well as those classic works speaking to the life of Francis of Assisi, the richness of his love of creation and service, and his own essential writings.
At the completion of the Certificate of Ministry issued by Baylor-Truett or for those on the track for Holy Orders or Incardination, they will complete a required residency/practicum phase, each approximately one week in duration, at St. Mark’s Seminary in Santa Fe, New Mexico.
Our residency phase intensive concentrates on our administration of the seven Sacraments and “Priest-Craft,” which is our core mission. Celtic and Franciscan Distinctives will also be covered along with world religions and traditions with visits from top spiritual leaders from various faith traditions. The residency phase continues with Liturgy, Sacraments, and Rites as well as Spiritual Coaching and Counseling, Spiritual Direction, and defining your ministry. Successful completion of the residency phase work will lead the candidate for Holy Orders through the Deaconate ordination and ultimately into the ordained ministerial Priesthood.
In designing the path for the conferring of Holy Orders or Incardination (of already ordained priests/ministers), it is fitting for us to structure both our hybrid/distance studies and our resident/practical phases to what is realistically and authentically current ministerial needs so that what is obsolete in former functions or offices is removed, what is useful is retained, what is necessary is defined, and what is required/expected for candidates ordination may be determined.
Ultimately our Seminary’s hybrid program by design is the most cost effective, ( Baylor-Truett’s low-cost pay for each course as you go and Notre Dame- McGraths Catholic Theology intensive combined with our super low-cost residency at St. Mark’s ) and scholarly efficient program for bi-vocational clergy seeking Apostolic and Sacramental Ordination to the Ministerial Priesthood with our Order of Celtic Franciscan Chaplains
In closing, we understand the challenges that responding to your calling to bi-vocational Holy Orders entails. The scale and scope of St. Mark’s Seminary is such that we have the flexibility to work with your individual schedules and life issues to ensure your successful completion of all our requirements, and ultimately answer your call to do God’s work for God’s people.
We'd love to connect with you.
We want you to feel supported every step of the way. So reach out to St. Mark's Dean about your discernment, or help you find the information you need to obtain the certificates.