Process for possible Priesthood candidates:

-initially, aspirant (interested person) contacts the Vocation Director
-Vocational Director will send out preliminary paperwork to applicants who should try to complete everything as quickly as possible.
-aspirant must then get scheduled take an MAT; the score is sent to the Byzantine catholic Seminary.
-once returned, paperwork is sent to our St. Gregory Melkite Seminary Board Members, who have one (1) month to review papers and make a decision.
-if majority of members is positive, an interview by members with the aspirantmay be scheduled.
-if the aspirant is approved by the Board, Vocation Director will schedule psychological testing for him in his locale; the Vocation Director receives the evaluation report from psychologist and adds it to the aspirant’s file.
-once review of the file is completed, file is sent to the Melkite Eparchial Bishop with the recommendation of the Melkite Seminary Board.
-if the Eparchial Bishop approves the aspirant as a sponsored candidate for the Seminary, the Vocation Director forwards a copy of the candidate’s file to the Byzantine Catholic Seminary Board and asks for the aspirant to beaccepted for studies.
-Vocation Director continues to keep in contact with the seminarian during the latter’s seminary journey as well as the seminarian taking the initiative to keep in contact with the Vocation Director.

Requirements To Be Considered for Study

Obviously, the life of a priest would hope for a person who is healthy and has the stamina to be able to endue the study work and later ministry required. Then, an educated clergy in today’s society is necessary to be able to offer persons, who come to them, with sound theology, a knowledge of church history, sensible and mature responses to questions, practical and reassuring comfort in times of distress, a loving and respectful appreciation of liturgical services, along with inspiring sermons. A bachelor’s degree would be the first step before taking on courses in theology. Further, knowledge of philosophy beforehand benefits those who hope to study theology. Taking courses at the approved institution not only provides the necessary studies of preparation but also provides an atmosphere of social interaction and the necessary monitoring and observation by seminary personnel and spiritual directors whom would be physically present and able to evaluate the suitability, growth and maturity of those who will, God-willing, one day have souls entrusted to them.


Presently, our candidates reside and take courses at:
Byzantine Catholic Seminary of Sts. Cyril and Methodius
Very Rev. Robert Pipta, Rector
3605 Perrysville Ave.
Pittsburgh, PA 15214
However, any initial inquiries re: applying for study/ministry
or serving in our Eparchy must be made by contacting:
Rt. Rev. Archimandrite John Azar, Vocation Director
Office of Vocations

1428 Ponce de Leon Ave., NE
Atlanta, Georgia 30307
Byzantine jurisdictions sending candidates to this seminary:
Eparchy           Vocation Director                                           Email
Ruthenian        Pittsburgh Rev. Kevin Marks                 
Ruthenian        Passaic Rev. Michael Kerestes               
Ruthenian        Parma Bishop Milan Lach, S.J.               
Ruthenian        Phoenix Very Rev. Michael O’Loughlin  
Melkite            Newton Rt. Rev. Archimandrite John Azar
Romanian        Canton Hiermonk Frederick Peterson, OSB
Slovak              Toronto Bishop John Pazak, C.Ss.R.        

Summer Assignments

During the course of being a seminarian, the Vocation Director assigns the seminarians to various Melkite Parishes for a minimum of eight (8) weeks. The students would be under the guidance of a Pastor who would share his experiences, advice and guidance for the understanding and hands-on experience of pastoral work in a parish setting.