History of the Programme

The Religious Formation Ministry Programme was established in Ireland in 1982. The initiative was taken by the Conference of Religious of Ireland (then known as the Conference of Major Religious Superiors). It came into being in response to the need to prepare religious women and men and for the ministry of formation of new members and for leadership roles in their Congregations/Societies/Dioceses. However, a significant number of religious also availed of the Programme for personal renewal or to discern future ministry during a time of transition. 

As the number of international participants increased the sponsorship of the Programme was taken over by the Irish Missionary Union in 1998. It offers a valuable resource to its members, many of whom are in the process of handing over responsibility for formation, leadership and projects to local members of the Congregation /Society abroad.

In 2016, CORI and AMU came together to form a new body called AMRI, Association of Leaders of Missionaries and Religious of Ireland. AMRI is now the sponsoring body of the Religious Formation Missionary Programme.

Programme locations since inception in 1982
1982 - 1997 Carysfoot School campus in Blackrock, Dublin
1997 - 1999 Dominican Priory in Tallaght, Dublin
1999 - 2005 Mill Hill campus, Dartry, Dublin
2005 - the present Willow Park School campus, Blackrock, Dublin

RFM, Willow Park School Campus

From the beginning the course welcomed applicants from any part of the world, though the majority in the early years were Irish born. To date 1001 participants have graduated.

Europe Africa Asia Oceania The Americas
468 291 164 63 15

The Programme continues to develop and adapt to meet the needs of participants in a rapidly evolving world and universe. In the rich and challenging environment of diverse cultures, worldviews and experiences, the Programme aims to create an inclusive, welcoming community which seek to read the signs of the time from a Gospel perspective. 

See details of each of the year groups on the Participants page