No candidate may be admitted to St. John’s Seminary without the approval and sponsorship of a diocese or religious community. Therefore, prior to his admission to the seminary, a candidate is to determine prayerfully and with spiritual guidance, the diocese or religious community for which he proposes to study and which, in turn, will sponsor his admission to the seminary.
Once the diocese has accepted a candidate for sponsorship and has submitted that candidate’s application to the seminary, there arises a certain bond between the candidate and the sponsoring diocese. What further is said here regarding sponsoring dioceses and bishops is understood to include sponsoring religious communities and religious superiors.
Transfer of Sponsorship
The candidate proposes to serve the Local Church in a particular diocese, and that diocese proposes to sponsor this
particular candidate for the program of priestly formation. The bond with one’s Local Church ought not to be severed except for the most weighty reasons, after mature deliberation, careful consideration of the needs of the diocese which is presently sponsoring him, and sound advice.
It is the policy of St. John’s Seminary to discourage seminarians from transferring from one diocese to another.
It is the accepted norm that a seminarian commits himself to the archdiocese or diocese in which he resides, and that this commitment continues throughout his seminary years leading to ordination. Cases in which a seminarian would transfer from one diocese to another, or to or from a religious community, while continuing to study at St. John’s Seminary ought to be rare. In those rare cases, should a particular seminarian wish to initiate a process of transfer from one diocese or religious community to another, he is to follow in succession the following steps:
It is the policy that these infrequent transfers occur officially and take effect during the summer months and never during the course of the school year.
The reasons for the transfer of a particular student shall not be deemed as precedent for the transfer of another student. Each case shall be judged on its merits, always considering the policy of the Seminary to discourage requests for transfer.