October 25, 2013

Archbishop Emeritus Buechlein is honored as seminary’s new dining hall and dorm are dedicated

Archbishop Joseph W. Tobin raises his hands in prayer on Oct. 21 while blessing the new dining hall and dormitory of Bishop Simon Bruté College Seminary in Indianapolis. Archbishop Emeritus Daniel M. Buechlein attended the ceremony. The new dining hall is named after him. (Photo by Sean Gallagher)

Archbishop Joseph W. Tobin raises his hands in prayer on Oct. 21 while blessing the new dining hall and dormitory of Bishop Simon Bruté College Seminary in Indianapolis. Archbishop Emeritus Daniel M. Buechlein attended the ceremony. The new dining hall is named after him. (Photo by Sean Gallagher)

By Sean Gallagher

The continued growth of Bishop Simon Bruté College Seminary in Indianapolis was celebrated on Oct. 21 as Archbishop Joseph W. Tobin blessed and dedicated its new dining hall and dormitory.

Archbishop Emeritus Daniel M. Buechlein, who founded the seminary in 2004, attended the event. The seminary’s dining hall was named in his honor. The dormitory, which features 10 double occupancy rooms, is named St. Bonaventure Hall.

“I’d like to thank Archbishop Daniel for the wisdom of planting this seed and to assure him that we’re going to care for it, not simply for this building, but also for the young men who will be here,” Archbishop Tobin said during the dedication ceremony. “And we give glory to God for the wonderful fruit that is yet to be realized because of Bishop Simon Bruté Seminary.”

The $2.6 million project, which also included the renovation and expansion of the seminary’s chapel, was largely funded through the estate gift of the late James P. Scott of Indianapolis.

The event was attended by the 43 seminarians—from 10 dioceses—who are enrolled at the seminary. Others at the event included benefactors and members of the seminary’s policy and advisory boards and representatives of Marian University in Indianapolis, where the seminarians take classes as part of their intellectual formation for the priesthood.

“Join me in thanking God,” Archbishop Buechlein said to those attending the event. “That’s the only way that this could have happened. This is marvelous. I could have never imagined this 10 years ago.”

At the end of his remarks, Archbishop Buechlein addressed the seminarians.

“Fellows, you have good support. Don’t disappoint. We need you,” he said. “God bless this house very much. He loves you, and I love you and so do a lot of people. So be grateful tonight.”

Seminarian Timothy DeCrane, a senior at Bishop Bruté, is grateful for the good example of ordained life and ministry that he has in Archbishop Buechlein.

“His entire priesthood has been a gift to the Archdiocese of Indianapolis,” said DeCrane, a member of Most Holy Name of Jesus Parish in Beech Grove. “He has demonstrated authentic leadership, following Christ even when it becomes uncomfortable. He is authentic and is willing to embrace any challenges that may come [his] way.”

Father Robert Robeson, rector of Bishop Bruté since its founding in 2004, said during the ceremony that he thanks God every day that Archbishop Buechlein appointed him to lead the seminary.

Before the event, Father Robeson also spoke of the central role that Archbishop Buechlein played in helping the seminary get to where it is today from humble beginnings.

“He founded this place. He made it possible for us to have a seminary,” Father Robeson said. “It was a huge risk at a time when seminaries were closing all over the country. He saw the need and made the decision to open a new seminary.”

Although Archbishop Buechlein retired from leading the Church in central and southern Indiana in 2011 because of health issues, Father Robeson said that his influence is still felt in the seminary.

“The very center of our life here is the celebration of the Eucharist and prayer,” Father Robeson said. “This was the archbishop’s continuous mantra, that prayer is the most important thing.”

When the seminary moved to the former Carmelite Monastery of the Resurrection in 2008, it had 18 seminarians enrolled. Father Robeson said that he and other people helping plan its future expected it to grow to its optimal size of 48 to 60 seminarians. They just didn’t foresee it growing so quickly.

“We’ve gotten there faster than expected,” Father Robeson said. “And I think part of that is because of Archbishop Buechlein’s reputation. People have [also] seen that it’s a great community where our guys grow. The seminary is a great environment for men to grow and develop the qualities that are necessary to become a good and holy priest.”

Father Robeson said that the new dining hall named after Archbishop Buechlein contributes to this environment because it easily accommodates the entire seminary community for meals and as a place for formation conferences and studying.

DeCrane agreed.

“Guys are much more comfortable in this setting,” he said. “This is beneficial because guys don’t mind spending time with each other [there], which helps encourage the morale of the community.”
 

(For more information on Bishop Simon Bruté College Seminary, log on to www.archindy.org/bsb.)

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