The following comes from a Feb. 19 release from the San Francisco archdiocese.
Most Rev. Salvatore Cordileone, archbishop of San Francisco, announced on Wednesday, February 19, 2014 the appointment of Rev. Gladstone Stevens, S.S., new permanent president-rector of St. Patrick’s Seminary & University in Menlo Park.
Until recently associate professor of theology and vice rector at St. Patrick’s Seminary, Father Stevens is best known as someone who combines theological knowledge with religious counsel and encouragement. At St. Patrick’s he is regarded as an articulate and engaging professor of dogmatic theology. In California and beyond he is a regular retreat master, guides days of recollection and gives talks to priests especially, but also to laypeople seeking to deepen their faith.
Archbishop Cordileone noted, “Father Stevens is highly esteemed by many groups in California. Bishops, seminarians and laypeople all respect his preaching and spiritual insights. He’s faithful, clear, eloquent, humorous and friendly. What more could a seminarian ask for in the rector of the seminary?”
For his part, Father Stevens is delighted both for himself and for the Sulpicians who have led St. Patrick’s Seminary since its founding in 1898. “I definitely want St. Patrick’s to be perceived as a premier seminary in the West, a place where seminarians receive theological, practical and spiritual training to be effective priests” said Father Stevens.
Father Stevens is taking his new appointment as leader and administrator very seriously. Acknowledging that his background is more theological than administrative, he plans to burnish his managerial skills by participating in a special management seminar this summer at the University of Notre Dame. The seminar is specifically designed for senior administrators in Catholic institutions of higher education.
Born in Connecticut and raised in Nashville, Tennessee, Father Stevens graduated from Quincy College in Quincy, Illinois in 1989. After graduate Biblical Studies at Vanderbilt University, he obtained his Ph.D. in theology from Marquette University in Milwaukee, Wisconsin in 1997. Ordained a priest for the archdiocese of Louisville in 2000, and after serving in parish work for a few years, Father Stevens started teaching theology at St. Mary’s Seminary in Baltimore. Even while teaching at St. Mary’s Seminary, he obtained his licentiate in sacred theology in 2007.
As a member of the Society of Saint Sulpice, a community of diocesan priests dedicated to educating and guiding future and fellow priests, Father Stevens arrived at St. Patrick’s Seminary in 2008 assuming the position of vice rector and academic dean, a position he has held for the past six years. Asked about his many activities in the Bay Area, Father Stevens says.“I have enjoyed working with the seminarians, but with many other groups as well. I am gratified that others find my presentations helpful. For my part, associations with communities such as the Poor Clares, the Order of Malta and Legatus stimulate my faith.”