Father Chad Arnold, left, and Father Michael Simone in front of the St. Joseph House of Formation on the St. Joseph Parish campus in Wichita. (Advance photo)

The St. Joseph House of Formation will expand beginning next school year.
The seminary formation was originally going to be a two-year program for freshman and sophomores who would begin their formation and studies for bachelor’s degrees in philosophy while being housed at a former rectory at St. Joseph Parish in Wichita.
But, Father Chad Arnold, director of Vocations for the Diocese of Wichita, said Bishop Carl A. Kemme has announced an expansion.
“We’re going to expand that to a third year because Bishop Kemme has been very pleased with how the House has been running – as are Father Mike (Simone) and I,” he said.
Father Simone is director of the St. Joseph House of Formation. Father Arnold is also assistant director of the House.
This year’s sophomores, instead of leaving for their junior year to continue their formation and studies, will instead stay at the house of formation in Wichita and continue their studies at Newman University.
Exact class numbers of seminarians are not yet available, Father Arnold said.
The house of formation was established in the Fall of 2017 for several reasons, Father Simone said when the program was announced last year.
“One of them is so that we can have a local program of formation, and also so that they can be exposed directly to parish ministry,” he said.
“There’s a tradition at St. Joseph Parish for hosting religious men and women on campus since they’ve been in existence, so we’re hopeful that this is a natural way to extend that to a diocesan family as well.”