Pope seeks to 'balance' role of psychology in priestly formation
While encouraging seminaries to avail themselves of certain psychological insights, Pope John Paul II has insisted that the role of psychology in the formation of priests should be harmonised with a profound understanding of the Christian conscience on life and the vocation to the priesthood.
During an address delivered today to the plenary assembly of the Vatican Congregation for Catholic Education, the Holy Father said that a new Vatican document would help to keep in mind the contribution of the psychological sciences while safeguarding "the value and space proper to the spiritual" dimension.
He said: "It would be opportune to pay attention to the preparation of psychological experts, who must combine a high scientific level with a profound understanding of the Christian conscience on life and the vocation to the priesthood."
The Holy Father insisted that seminarians should be encouraged to view celibacy as a "joyful" option.
"Celibacy itself for the Kingdom of God must be presented as an eminently favourable option to the joyful announcement of the risen Christ," he said.