The Oratory of St John Vianney

THE ORATORY OF ST. JOHN VIANNEY

Tu es sacerdos in aeternum Ps 110:4

Vocations

A vocation to the Oratory of St John Vianney is a desire to sanctify one's life through, together and with the brethren of the Oratory. The Oratorian vocation is a simple one; to sanctify one's life in, through and with Christ; to serve Christ in, through and with His Church and to sanctify the life of others... in, through and with Christ!  The nature of an Oratorian vocation is described in Our Life.

Are you called... to holiness?

Every Christian is called to holiness...  An Oratorian on admission to the fraternity makes a promise to convert his inner life that he may ably sanctify the life of others he is called to serve.  This follows the example of St John Vianney whose concentration on his own spiritual life and person brought others to recognise in him especially through his pastoral ministry the purpose and existence of God in their own lives. 

The Oratorian by living a simple Rule of Life in common with his brethren after the idea of St Philip Neri, voluntarily and in charity, learns to strengthen and discipline his inner life such that he is able to reflect the example of these Saintly Patrons, the fruits of which it is hoped will be seen in the success of his own ministry and service of The Church.

There are three types of vocation expressed in the Oratory;

Oratorian (the 'first order') consists of consecrated members i.e. similar to a religious vocation; Oratorians wear the habit of the Oratory, a full length black scapula over a black tunic/cassock (white in summer);

Confrere (the 'second order') consists of Sacred Ministers desirous to share in the life and spirituality of the Oratory; Companions wear the cassock;

Companion (the 'third order') for members of the faithful who promise to pray for the Sacred Ministry, particularly vocations; Companions wear a badge with the Oratory logo.

Eligibility & Formation

Oratorian of St John Vianney

An Oratorian is an avowed member of the Oratory family, committe for life to live in fraternal charity with the brethren. Oratorians make a "Perpetual Act of Commitment" to live according to the spirit of the evangelical counsels i.e. chastity, poverty and obedience.

Oratorians append the postnominal letters OSJV after their name.

  • Open to any (male) cleric in Holy Orders whether Deacon, Priest or Bishop, who is single and any baptised and confirmed layman over the age of 18;

  • On application a candidate becomes a Postulant during a period of discernment with a senior member of the Oratory;

  • On election and acceptance the Postulant is received into the Oratory during Divine Worship, making a voluntary Act of Committment to live the Rule of Life and observe the Constitution of the fraternity as a Novice, he is then instructed in the life and spirituality of the Oratorian vocation;

  • After a period of not less than six months, a Novice may be admitted temporarily as an Oratorian by making a Temporary Act of Commitment;

  • After a period of not less than three years but no more than seven and upon the assent of the brethren in his Chapter and his Superiors, an Oratorian may make his Perpetual Act of Commitment.

Oratorians join and participate in the fellowship and activities of the Fraternity on a committed basis. They may be Anglican/ Old/ Independent/ Orthodox/ *Roman Catholic ordained Sacred Ministers or laymen. Being an Oratorian of St John Vianney in no way abrogates, dispenses or prevents any Cleric from observing lawful, Canonical or proscribed obedience to their regular Bishop or ecclesiastical Superior or any layman from fulfilling the customs and duties of his particular Church community.

*Roman Catholic clergy interested in becoming Oratorians are reminded of Can. 278 §1. Secular clerics have the right to associate with others to pursue purposes in keeping with the clerical state etc. Roman Catholic regular clergy are reminded of Can. 307 §3. Members of religious institutes can join associations according to the norm of their proper law with the consent of their superior.

Confrere of St John Vianney

A Confrere is a Sacred Minister desirous to share in the spirituality and fellowship of the Oratorians but who is perhaps already a consecrated religious, or is a married priest. A Confrere makes a similar "Act of Commitment" slightly different from the Oratorians that does not include the vows of chastity, poverty and obedience yet includes something of the spirit of these counsels.

Confreres append the postnominal letters CSJV to their names.

  • Open to any (male) cleric in Holy Orders whether Deacon, Priest or Bishop, married or single and any baptised and confirmed layman over the age of 18;

  • On application a candidate becomes a Postulant during a period of discernment with a senior member of the Oratory;

  • On election and acceptance the Postulant is received into the Oratory as a Confrere during Divine Worship, making a voluntary Act of Committment to live the Rule of Life and observe the Constitution of the fraternity, he is then instructed in the life and spirituality of the Oratorian vocation;

  • After a period of not less than six months, a Novice may be admitted temporarily as an Confrere by making a Temporary Act of Commitment;

  • After a period of not less than three years but no more than seven and upon the assent of the brethren in his Chapter and his Superiors, a Confrere may make his Perpetual Act of Commitment.

Confreres join and participate in the fellowship and activities of the Fraternity on a voluntary but committed basis. They may be Anglican/ Old/ Independent/ Orthodox/ *Roman Catholic ordained Sacred Ministers or laymen. Being an Oratorian of St John Vianney in no way abrogates, dispenses or prevents any Cleric from observing lawful, Canonical or proscribed obedience to their regular Bishop or ecclesiastical Superior or any layman from fulfilling the customs and duties of his particular Church community.

*Roman Catholic clergy interested in becoming Oratorians are reminded of Can. 278 §1. Secular clerics have the right to associate with others to pursue purposes in keeping with the clerical state etc. Roman Catholic regular clergy are reminded of Can. 307 §3. Members of religious institutes can join associations according to the norm of their proper law with the consent of their superior.

Companion of St John Vianney

A Companion of the Oratory is anybody desirous to support vocations in the Sacred Ministry. A Companion commits to praying daily for the Oratory and for priests everywhere, especially for vocations.

  • Open to any member of Christ's Faithful desirous to support the charism and apostolate of the Oratory of St John Vianney.

  • Companions promise to pray for the Oratorians and to pray daily for vocations to the Sacred Ministry, for those discerning a vocation, those in formation for the Sacred Ministry and those already serving within the Sacred Ministry.
  • Companions undertake to follow a simple Rule of Life expressing the ethos and spirituality of the Oratory and are welcome to attend events and participate in activities arranged by the Oratory such as spiritual conferences, retreats and acts of worship.
  • Companions are encouraged to support their own Sacred Ministers, parish priests and bishops as far as they are able within their own denomination in the living of their vocation and ministry.
  • Companions will, when and wherever possible, be grouped into Chapters with other Companions and Oratorians, that regularly convene to pray and share fellowship.
  • Priest Companions are asked particularly to remember the Oratorians often at the Altar and particularly to offer Mass for the Oratory's intentions on the Feast Days of St John Vianney (August 9th) and St Phillip Neri (May 26th). 

Oratorian

Confrere

Companions