Saint Paul Seminary (Pittsburgh)

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Saint Paul Seminary
The coat of arms of the Diocese of Pittsburgh
2900 Noblestown Road
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
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Type Roman Catholic seminary
Established 1965 (56 years ago)
Rector Very Rev. Brian Welding

Saint Paul Seminary is the diocesan minor seminary for the Roman Catholic Diocese of Pittsburgh. It is located in East Carnegie, a neighborhood of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. The seminary is not a degree-granting institution; seminarians in their collegiate or pre-theological studies attend classes at Duquesne University.


Previous diocesan seminaries

Bishop Michael O'Connor founded Pittsburgh's first diocesan seminary in 1844, the first year of his episcopate.[1] St. Michael Seminary was located in Pittsburgh's Birmingham neighborhood. It was briefly discontinued for four years (1851–1856), operated for a year in Cambria County, and was finally reestablished in the Pittsburgh neighborhood of Glenwood.[1] The seminary definitively closed in 1876 with the tumultuous creation of the Diocese of Allegheny out of the Diocese of Pittsburgh.[1] After 1876, Pittsburgh's diocesan seminarians received instruction at Saint Vincent Seminary in Latrobe.[2]

Seminarians during the episcopacy of Hugh C. Boyle, from 1926 to 1945, were allowed to commute to Duquesne University from home.[3] Bishop John F. Dearden, however, ended that practice.[3] Until the creation of Saint Paul's, Pittsburgh seminarians would attend classes at other minor seminaries in Pennsylvania, Ohio, Indiana, and Kentucky.

File:Saint Paul Seminary Phelan Hall 1.JPG
Phelan Hall on the campus of St. Paul Seminary

Establishment of Saint Paul's

Saint Paul's Seminary occupies the grounds and buildings of the former Saint Paul's Orphanage.[4] The 17-acre (6.9 ha) campus began its connection with the Pittsburgh diocese with the establishment of the orphanage there on May 27, 1900, on "a plateau at Idlewood between Crafton and Carnegie."[4] The orphanage operated until August 1965, when its operations were combined with those of Holy Family Institute in Emsworth.[4] In September 1965, Bishop John Wright founded St. Paul Seminary as a minor, or "transitional," seminary on the same site.[4][3]

Pittsburgh bishop David Zubik sold the diocesan bishop's mansion in Oakland in favor of a simpler apartment on the seminary's campus in 2007.[5][6] Auxiliary bishop emeritus William J. Winter is also in residence.[7]


The following priests have served as rectors of Saint Paul's Seminary since its founding in 1965:[8] Two former rectors, Donald Wuerl and Edward Burns, currently serve as Cardinal Archbishop of Washington D.C. and Bishop of Juneau, Alaska, respectively.

  1. Rev. Msgr. Donald W. Kraus (1965–1981)
  2. Rev. Donald W. Wuerl (1981–1985)
  3. Rev. Theodore A. Rutkowski (1985–1986)
  4. Rev. Msgr. William M. Ogrodowski (1986–1990)
  5. Rev. Charles S. Bober (1990–1993)
  6. Rev. Joseph J. Kleppner (1993–1996)
  7. Rev. Edward J. Burns (1996–1997)
  8. Rev. David J. Bonnar (1997–2002)
  9. Rev. James A. Wehner (2002–2008)
  10. Rev. Msgr. Edward J. Burns (2008–2009)
  11. Rev. Dennis P. Yurochko (2009–2011)
  12. Rev. Joseph M. Mele (2011–2014)
  13. Rev. Brian J. Welding (2014–present)

The current rector is the Very Rev. Brian J. Welding. The current vice-rector is the Rev. Nicholas S. Vaskov.[9]

See also


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 Catholic Historical Society of Western Pennsylvania (1943). Catholic Pittsburgh's One Hundred Years. Chicago: Loyola University Press. p. 31.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  2. Catholic Pittsburgh's One Hundred Years, p. 147
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 Apone, Carl (November 19, 1967). "New Look in the Seminary". Pittsburgh Press. pp. 32–36.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 4.3 Bober, Charles (August 18, 2000). "St. Paul Orphanage saved young lives during its 129 years". The Pittsburgh Catholic. Retrieved July 21, 2011.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  5. Levin, Steve (September 27, 2007). "A bishop settles for a humbler abode". Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. Retrieved July 21, 2011.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  6. Widmer, Jeffrey (December 25, 2008). "Bishop David Zubik feels at home in St. Paul Seminary". Your North Hills. Trib Total Media. Retrieved July 22, 2011.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  7. LaRussa, Tony (May 21, 2005). "Pope accepts Winter's resignation as bishop". Pittsburgh Tribune-Review. Retrieved July 21, 2011.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  8. "History". Saint Paul Seminary. Retrieved February 27, 2016.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  9. "Formation". Saint Paul Seminary. Retrieved February 27, 2016.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>

External links