Christ’s Peace! As the rectors of Notre Dame Seminary and St. Joseph Seminary College, we have the privilege of educating and forming men for the priesthood who will serve as spiritual shepherds in the Diocese of Baton Rouge.

It is a blessing that in recent years enrollment has risen to record levels at both Notre Dame Seminary and St. Joseph Seminary College, the two institutions where vocations to the priesthood are nurtured in our archdiocese.

In the fall, St. Joseph Seminary College will welcome approximately 139 seminarians, including 13 from the Diocese of Baton Rouge. Notre Dame Seminary anticipates 120 seminarians this upcoming year, including seven men from Baton Rouge.

To accommodate the seminaries’ growing needs, Archbishop Gregory M. Aymond and the Archdiocese of New Orleans have launched “I Will Give You Shepherds: The Campaign for Priestly Formation” to ensure Notre Dame Seminary and St. Joseph Seminary College continue to provide the very best in priestly formation for years to come. Gifts to the campaign will enable both institutions to improve the facilities that house the programs of formation for seminarians – our future priests.

For more background on the importance of gifts to the campaign, please visit diobr.org to view a video that features seminarians from Baton Rouge. As future parish priests, these seminarians will impact the lives of countless people in the Diocese of Baton Rouge and beyond.

It is a testament to the generosity and fidelity of the people of God to the Catholic Church of Louisiana that nearly $18 million has been raised thus far toward the $25 million goal for “I Will Give You Shepherds.”

We are grateful to Bishop Robert W. Muench for his steadfast support of “I Will Give You Shepherds.” We ask you to pray for our two seminaries and to invite your parishioners to support the formation and education of seminarians by contributing to “I Will Give You Shepherds.” Your leadership and Our Lady’s help will enable us to reach our goal.

Let us all continue to pray for one another, and for all those discerning God’s call to the priesthood and religious life.

Very Rev. Gregory M. Boquet OSB President-Rector, St. Joseph Seminary College

Very Rev. James A. Wehner STD

Rector-President, Notre Dame Seminary