Major Seminary in Cameroon Earns Recognition for Producing “true pastors of souls”

Some Catholic Bishops in Cameroon during the celebration of the Golden Jubilee of the St. Thomas Aquinas Major Seminary Bambui (STAMS) on 1 December 2023. Credit: Archdiocese of Bamenda

St. Thomas Aquinas Major Seminary Bambui (STAMS) in Cameroon’s Catholic Archdiocese of Bamenda has been lauded for producing “true pastors of souls” in its 50 years of existence.

In his homily during the celebration of the Golden Jubilee of STAMS on Friday, December 1, Archbishop Andrew Fuanya Nkea of Bamenda said, “Within the past 50 years, what was planted as mustard seed, has grown into a big tree.”

“Beginning with the original 12 seminarians, this seminary has within the last 50 years admitted 1, 355 students 791 of whom were ordained Priests and 52 Deacons making a total of 843 Clergymen,”  Archbishop Nkea said during the Mass that was presided over by Archbishop José Avelino Bettencourt, Apostolic Nuncio to Cameroon and Equatorial Guinea.

He added, “This seminary has also produced dedicated and committed laymen who are good citizens, responsible parents and practicing Christians.”

“For all these 50 years this seminary has produced Priests after the example of Christ and has produced true pastors of souls for the ministry of teaching, sanctifying and ruling the people of God,” the Cameroonian Catholic Archbishop said.


He continued, “This seminary has produced many Holy Priests, very brilliant scholars who have excelled in the pastoral ministry and academic apostolates all over the world.”

“The work of the more than 800 Priests who have been ordained from this seminary have been very fruitful. Every Diocese in this country can boast of a Priest from this seminary,” the Archbishop of Bamenda who also serves as the President of the National Episcopal Conference of Cameroon (NECC) said during the Eucharistic celebration at STAMS campus.

The Catholic Archbishop who started his Episcopal Ministry in Cameroon’s Mamfe Diocese as Coadjutor Bishop in August 2013 further said, “This seminary would never have survived these 50 years without the support of the local Christian communities within the Ecclesiastical province of Bamenda.”

He thanked the people of God in the Ecclesiastical province of Bamenda for their dedication, sacrifices and generosity to ensure the material sustenance of the Major Seminary. 

STAMS was founded in 1973 under the direction of Late Bishop Pius Suh Awa and late Archbishop Paul Mbiybe Verdzekov

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Jude Atemanke is a Cameroonian journalist with a passion for Catholic Church communication. He holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Journalism and Mass Communication from the University of Buea in Cameroon. Currently, Jude serves as a journalist for ACI Africa.