When there were many seminarians in the diocesan seminaries.
(Rome) The seminary of the diocese of Vicenza was still in its prime just a few decades ago. From this diocese comes Cardinal Secretary of State Pietro Parolin, who was ordained a priest in 1980 for the diocese.
Until the early 1970s, the Major Seminary had a constant 130-150 seminarians. The Minor seminary, the episcopal high school, was attended by about 200 students. Every year 20-25 new priests were ordained.
That was not uncommon, but in whole European regions the rule.
The diocese had a well-known Schola Cantorum, which consisted of a hundred singers who belonged to the two seminaries. It was headed by Msgr Ernesto Dalla Libera (1884-1980), who took piano and organ lessons at his own expense as a student and trained in Gregorian chant with the Benedictines of Parma. He was commissioned in his home diocese to become the main representative of the Cecilia Movement and the then bishop, Msgr. Ferdinando Rodolfi, Bishop from 1911, with the implementation of the liturgical renewal in the diocese. From 1908-1968 Dalla Libera was choirmaster of the Schola Cantorum of the episcopal seminary, which performed her musical service at the Duomo of Vicenza.
The Schola has not existed for a long time.
The Seminary currently has nine seminarians in the academic year 2018/2019, although the population in the diocese has increased by 30 percent since 1970, from 670,000 to 867,000.
In 2018 there was no ordination. Also in 2019 and 2020, as it currently looks, there will be no new priestly ordinations.
The minor seminary was closed three years ago, and the task of the vocation ministry among high school students transferred to a retreat and meeting center for young people. The seminary building, which was rebuilt in the 1950s under great financial sacrifice of the faithful, was sold to the National Health Service in 2015.
Now it became known that the private school H-Farm will move into the former small seminary. It describes itself as a "school of the future.” There are "neither blackboards nor school desks,” but "mobility and networking.” The main tools are "McBook and iPad from primary school.” Digitization and the use of modern, technical aids is a central component of the "school philosophy.” Particular emphasis will be placed on "robotics and artificial intelligence,” but also "magic hour to meet the superheroes of our time" and "soft skills to train capable managers with leadership and empathy.” H-Farm wants to develop a "completely new school model" and test it on some "thousands of students" in the H campus in order to gradually export it.
The spectrum should reach from kindergarten to post-university and further education. "A span from the age of 3 to 33," says the founder and CEO of Riccardo Donadon. Half of the money is privately owned by the insurance company Cattolica Assiscurazioni, whose largest single shareholder is Warren Buffett. The other half are financed by the public sector through a credit institution controlled by the Ministry of Economy and Finance. The cooperation had been entered into by the previous government.
According to the traditional website Messa in Latino, it is "sad" that one Diocesan high school closes down while another private board closes.
Messa in Latino accuses the incumbent bishop of Vicenza of being the confirmation that the "typical" activity of a bishop today, that of a "steward of decline" is to "shut down, let go, sell.”
"Is it possible that nobody realizes that he needs a course change?"
Text: Giuseppe Nardi
Trans: Tancred firstname.lastname@example.org