Seminary to establish Archbishop Harry J. Flynn Catechetical Institute

Seminary to establish Archbishop Harry J. Flynn Catechetical Institute

The St. Paul Seminary will assist the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis in developing nondegree programs to help adults grow in their Catholic faith.

The new Archbishop Harry J. Flynn Catechetical Institute, to be established in fall 2008, will offer educational programs for lay people seeking to learn more about their faith and for religious educators such as faith formation directors, catechists, Catholic school teachers, youth ministry leaders, deacons and priests.

An advisory group of archdiocesan, seminary and University of St. Thomas faculty and staff are developing the institute's core curriculum based on the Catechism of the Catholic Church.  It is expected to consist of four modules based on the catechism's four pillars: the baptismal profession of faith (creed), the sacraments of faith, the life of faith (the commandments), and the prayer of the believer (the Lord's Prayer). In addition, the institute will offer one-day seminars that will focus on putting the Catholic faith into practice.

Faculty for the institute will be sought from among practicing Catholics with master's degrees or the equivalent.   Institute programs will be conducted at the seminary and at other locations in the Twin Cities metropolitan area.

Students will be granted certificates by the archdiocese for completion of institute coursework.

Monsignor Aloysius Callaghan, rector of the seminary, called the institute "a practical and effective means of formation and preparation to be authentic heralds of the Word."

Jeff Cavins , who directs the John Paul II Center, a nonprofit Catholic faith-formation organization based at the Church of St. Paul in Ham Lake, has been appointed interim director of the new institute. Cavins is a nationally known Catholic speaker, author and broadcaster. A graduate of Antioch University in Ohio, Cavins was a Protestant minister for 12 years before returning to the Catholic Church. He has an M.A. in theology with catechetical certification from the Franciscan University of Steubenville. He also is a graduate of Brown Institute in Minneapolis.

"Many Catholics ask for ways to deepen their faith, and I'm excited about this initiative," Cavins said. "Archbishop Flynn has always expressed his desire, so simply, to make Jesus known and loved, and this institute will do just that."

For further information on the Archbishop Harry J. Flynn Catechetical Institute, contact Cavins, (763) 234-5314.