Gellert Memorial Library

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This page contains links and descriptions for all of the electronic databases to which the library subscribes.

Contact us


Phone: (650) 321-5655


Mr. Matthew Horwitz
Library Director

Ms. Sharon Hamrick
Library Technical Assistant

Mr. Bruno Shiffman
Library Technical Assistant

Note: Gellert Memorial Library is principally for the use of the students, faculty, and staff of St. Patrick’s Seminary. Access to the facilities and collection is also granted to visitors whose research interests align with the mission of the seminary. Please contact the Library Director, Matthew Horwitz, for more information about the library’s guest policies and to request visitor access.


9:00 AM–5:00 PM
Saturday & Sunday: CLOSED

Closures 2024-2025

Independence Day Break: Thursday, July 4
Labor Day: Monday, September 2
Thanksgiving Break: Thursday, November 28, and Friday, November 29
Christmas Break: Tuesday, December 24, through Tuesday, December 31
New Year’s Day: Wednesday, January 1
Martin Luther King Jr. Day: Monday, January 20
Presidents’ Day: Monday, February 17
Holy Thursday and Good Friday: Thursday, April 17 and Friday, April 18
Easter Monday: Monday, April 21
Memorial Day: Monday, May 26

Using the Library

The Carl Gellert and Celia Berta Gellert Foundation Memorial Library (Gellert Memorial Library) is located on the first floor and basement of the main building of St. Patrick’s Seminary. It houses approximately 170,000 bound volumes and approximately 5,000 volumes of bound periodicals. Seating at tables, carrels, and lounge chairs is available for around 70 patrons. There are four desktop computer stations set up for general use, and Wi-Fi is available throughout the facility.

The operating hours for Gellert Memorial Library are Monday through Friday, 9:00 AM to 12:00 PM and 1:00 PM to 6:00 PM. Faculty and seminarians are permitted to use the library facilities outside of operating hours, but materials may only be borrowed when a staff member is available to check them out. One-time and permanent alterations to library operating hours will be communicated as far in advance as possible.

We principally collect academic material—books and journals—associated with the fields of Scripture studies, philosophy, and theology. Naturally, our emphasis is on the Catholic Church and her teachings. However, we also have in our holdings material on the doctrine and life of the Orthodox churches and of the Protestant ecclesial communities; on other religions; and on politics, science, and a variety of other topics. Popular works make up less of our book collection than academic works but are present in it as well, and we subscribe not only to academic journals but also to some popular magazines and newspapers. Works of literature, especially though not exclusively those by Catholic authors, can likewise be found on our shelves. We have an assortment of documentary or informational films, as well as a small but growing collection of feature films. If you would like to suggest a book or other item for addition to the library, then we welcome you to share your idea with our library staff.
Gellert Memorial Library always welcomes recurring or one-time monetary donations as well as in-kind donations. Check donations should be made out to St. Patrick’s Seminary & University, with “Gellert Memorial Library” written in the memo line, and either mailed to the library or given to the Library Director in person. Donations by credit card can be made through the Giving page hereplease state in the comments section of the Giving page that your donation is intended specifically for the library.
Please contact the library, either by phone or email, before bringing in-kind donations to us. Only materials that fit into our collection and are in sufficiently good shape will be added to our holdings. Some of the materials that have not been selected are given directly to faculty, staff, or seminarians who want them; others end up on the free book table and carousel that we maintain in the library; and still others are donated to Better World Books.
Receipt-of-donation letters for both monetary and in-kind donations can be made available upon request.
Note: we do not accept donations of religious articles (e.g., rosaries), pamphlets, audio cassettes, or VHS tapes.

Loan periods

Books, documentary DVDs and Blu-Rays, audio CDs
STPSU seminarians: eight weeks
STPSU faculty: six months
STPSU staff: four weeks
STPSU alumni and Visiting Researchers: four weeks

Feature film DVDs and Blu-Rays
All patron groups: seven days

Checking out, renewing, and returning materials

Materials may be renewed for two additional borrowing periods (effective from the date of the renewal request) unless the item has been requested by another patron.

Patrons may review their account and renew items by clicking “My Account” in the Discovery platform

When returning borrowed materials, please place them in one of the library’s book drops. One is located indoors by the main stairwell; the other is located by the library’s main entrance.

Recalls and holds

Any book in circulation may be recalled immediately for addition to course reserves or for use by another patron after the designated borrowing period has elapsed if he or she has placed a hold on it. Patrons may also request materials that are not currently checked out; these will be collected by the library staff and held for pickup for one week following receipt of the request.
Patrons are responsible for all books and other material checked out of the library and will be expected to replace, or assist financially in the replacement of, any lost, misplaced, or damaged items.

Course Reserves

Books and other materials required for seminary courses may be placed on reserve by STPSU faculty members. Since these titles are in demand for intensive use by many students, the materials can only be checked out for two hours at a time, which in practice means that they are restricted to library use only.

Interlibrary Loan (ILL) services are available to all library patrons. If Gellert Memorial Library does not have a needed item, an interlibrary loan request can be submitted through the Discovery platform.

Depending on the location of the lending library, patrons should allow a minimum of one to two weeks to obtain an ILL item. An ILL item will be checked out to the patron upon receipt, the due date having been established by the lending library. If a patron wishes to renew an interlibrary loan, he or she should inform the librarian one week before the item is due so that the librarian may secure permission from the lending library. When finished with the item, the patron must see that it is returned to Gellert Memorial Library (NOT the lending library) by the assigned due date. Delinquent borrowers may be asked to pay fines assessed by the lending library.

Desktop computers are available on the first floor for patron use. The entire library is also equipped with Wi-Fi. Please ask a library staff member for the password to the Wi-Fi network.

A printer/scanner/copier is set up on the first floor for use with the desktop computers located there. A separate self-serve book and document scanner with OCR and text-to-speech capabilities is also present on the first floor.

The table and carousel adjacent to the stairwell in the library hold books that are free for patrons to take. Most of them were received in donations and were not added to the collection either because they duplicated items already in it or fall outside of its scope. These books do not need to be checked out.

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