In the whole course of formation four dimensions receive
At the conclusion of the formation journey, the candidate who, in agreement
with the director of formation, considers himself to have the necessary pre-requisites
for ordination, may address to Bishop Pat a declaration written in his own
hand and signed by him, in which he attests that he is about to receive the
sacred order freely and of his own accord and will devote himself permanently
to the ecclesiastical ministry, asking at the same time that he be admitted
to receive the order.
Conferral of the Ministries of Lectorate and Acolytate
Before anyone may be promoted to the diaconate, whether permanent
or transitory, he must have received the ministries of lector and acolyte,
and have exercised them for an appropriate time.
Time of Formation
The formation programme lasts at least three years, in addition to the propaedeutic
period. Formational and scholastic meetings take place in the evenings and
selected Saturdays. From time to time candidates and their wives are expected
to attend retreats usually on weekends.
The Liturgical Rite of Admission to Candidacy
Admission to candidacy for ordination as deacon comes about
by means of a special liturgical rite. Enrolment among the candidates for
the diaconate does not constitute any right necessarily to receive diaconal
ordination. It is a first official recognition of the positive signs of
the vocation to the diaconate, which must be confirmed in the subsequent
years of formation
The Presentation of Aspirants
The decision to undertake the path of diaconal formation
can come about either upon the initiative of the aspirant himself or by
means of an explicit proposal of the community to which the aspirant belongs.
In each case, the decision must be accepted and shared by the community.
On behalf of the community, it is the pastor who must present to the Bishop
the aspirant to the diaconate. He will do so accompanying the candidacy
with an illustration of the motivations which support it and with a curriculum
vitae and pastoral history of the aspirant.
The Bishop after having consulted the director of formation and the formation
team, will decide whether or not to admit the aspirant to the propaedeutic
Norms for Formation of Permanent Deacons
For a man preparing to become a deacon, a fierce determination to grow
in spirituality and live one's life in accord with gospel values is paramount.
If this self-drive is lacking, the ascent to ordination is impossible.
This is not to imply that the man travels alone. At his disposal are
guides and tools for every step of the way but ultimately, progress is
made by his own efforts.
The Propaedeutic Period (Aspirant Formation)
During this period of seven months the aspirant will be introduced to
a deeper knowledge of theology, of spirituality and of the ministry of deacon
and will be led to a more attentive discernment of his call.