By: Grant Whitty, Inland Catholic

Around this time last year, 14 young men were preparing for another school year at Bishop White Seminary, and 6 of those men were preparing for their first year of seminary at Cor Christi. However, this year, 20 men have prepared and have now begun their academic year in the seminary, with 11 of those men as first-year seminarians enrolled in the Cor Christi, nearly doubling program.

As Bishop White Seminary and especially the Cor Christi program continues to grow, the new home for the first-year Cor Christi men—McGivney Hall—continues to grow closer to approval for occupancy. The former convent on the corner of N Astor and E Sinto underwent major renovations earlier this year and was projected finish by the start of this school year.

As a result of supply chain issues, there has been a delay in the opening of the new building. The central electrical panels have been on backorder for months. However, the rector of Cor Christ, Father Daniel Barnett, says they have just shipped from Georgia.

“It will be just a couple of weeks before [the electrical panels] get installed and inspected.,” Father Barnett said. “We hope the fire permit will also come through in the next couple of weeks.”

Aside from outstanding parts—new walls, floors, windows, kitchen cabinets, fireplace mantle, showers, bathrooms, and ADA-compliant entry ramp have all been completed. Father Barnett says the soft target date for completion is October 1. Even though the building will be completed in the weeks to come, the men of Cor Christi will not likely move in until a school break.

“We have to move in at a time that’s going to be good for the [men] because it’s going to be a major upheaval,” Father Barnett said. “We don’t want to do that in midterms, so it probably would be around Thanksgiving or maybe the last week of this semester.”

Once Cor Christi formally moves into McGivney Hall, the chapel will be the last piece of the puzzle. Right now, the chapel will only be mildly renovated. In the meantime, Father Barnett says, “It’ll be a simple chapel, very simple.”

Father Barnett is confident that the new Seminary Guild will help fund the remainder of the project and, most importantly, the ongoing formation of seminarians at Bishop White Seminary and Cor Christi. To find out more information about joining the Seminary Guild, click here.