Issue 1 – March 2016

College_CrestCelebrating 400 Years of Seminary formation in Rome

In this issue: Rector’s Welcome – Ogilvie and the Oath – Clement VIII: College Founder and Baptizer of the Coffee Bean – The Call to Priesthood – Vale – In the Footsteps of Saint James

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Rector’s Welcome

I am delighted to be able to introduce the inaugural edition of the new newsletter of the Pontifical Scots College in Rome. It is important for us to be able to keep in touch with the many people at home in Scotland, and elsewhere, whose prayers and support for the College allow it to continue[…]

Ogilvie and the Oath

In the year 1616, on the 10th March, sixteen students took the missionary oath to return to Scotland as secular priests. They had been given three months by Pope Paul V (formerly the first Cardinal-Protector of the College) to take the oath or leave the College. This move was made as it became clear that[…]


As we celebrate our 400th anniversary of Priestly Formation at the Scots College this year, we give a special thanks to all our benefactors, both living and dead.  We give thanks to them every day after lunch, and Mass on a Wednesday is offered for those who have been so kind and generous to the[…]

The Call to Priesthood – Ryan Black

There are a few questions that every seminarian will be asked at least a dozen times during his time in seminary. One of them is, “Isn’t it wonderful living in Rome?”, and another is, “What made you decide to go to seminary?”. While the answer to the first question changes depending on how close to[…]

The Scots College Society

While every person who prays for the community is a benefactor, it seems appropriate to mention in particular The Scots College Society. The members are former students of the College who wish to support the current community in a variety of practical ways. Many of the members are not priests, and when the Society had[…]

Clement VIII: College Founder and baptizer of the coffee bean

Clement VIII is an important figure in the history of the Scottish Church. During the Reformation, when Catholics were heavily persecuted, and many were driven out of their country, some clergy had made their way to Rome and pleaded with the Pope for a place where young Scots could be educated.  A group of Scottish[…]

In the Footsteps of Saint James

Why follow the Camino to Santiago de Compostela in Galicia in north-western Spain? This past summer as luck, or rather providence would have it, I was fortunate enough to find out what all the fuss is about. After a retreat in the Monastery of Montserrat, near Barcelona, I had just enough time to follow the[…]


When lightening crack whips up a squall, welcome quicksand waves enthral, a walk across the windy lake, exhausts the tempest, glass to make. Would weakness from such energy spent break your will and cause relent? Your icy back having turned my way; endless night of darkest day! Why punish me for Petrine treason? I am[…]