Vatican Council II,
Dogmatic Constitution on the Church,
Chapter 3, Number 29.
Character and Qualities of a man who seeks to apply as a candidate
for the selection process to become a deacon encompass many
factors. The first
is a call by the Spirit to become a deacon, this is after he
has already demonstrated a call to be a leader (active minister)
in his home parish. His
call to be a deacon should also be supported by his parish community
and wife (if married). He should also possess the following gifts:
and prudent judgment.
to motivate and facilitate others.
and open to others – their ideas, their ethnicity,
their culture, their gender, their race, and their religious
to actively listen.
in the Roman Catholic Tradition.
seeking faith enrichment opportunities.
marriage (if married).
to maintain a celibate life style (if single or wife is
free from canonical impediments (Code of Canon Law #1041)
a person whose life reflects a sense of service and commitment
to social justice issues.
apply to become a deacon in the Diocese of Albany, New York
you must be male and have generally have completed the Formation
for Ministry Program (FMP) with a positive recommendation from the FMP staff. If you believe
that you do not need to attend the Formation For Ministry Program,
please contact the Director of the Deacon Program at 518 453-6670.
you must be a minimum of 35 and a maximum of 62 years of age
at the time of ordination. As noted underabove,your marriage must be stable. If
you are single or widowed, you must be willing to maintain a
celibate life style. Exceptions
to this policy will be reviewed by the Director of the Deacon
Program and the
Deacon Acceptance Board and subject to approval by the Bishop.
requirements do not require a college
degree. A high
school diploma or GED is required. The candidate is also required to be willing and able
to undertake and successfully complete the educational, spiritual
and personal components of the program.
assignments are Episcopal in nature. Only the Bishop assigns a deacon to a ministry and only
he can relieve the deacon of his assignment. The assignment of a deacon has two parts – one
of service and one of liturgy. The service ministry is assumed to be the highest priority,
to be the sacramental presence of Jesus in his world.
service role of the deacon was envisioned by Vatican II and
has since been promoted by the Church as his primary role. Just as the liturgical role is one of service at the
Table, his service to the wider community,
beyond the confines of his faith community, is at the
heart of his ministry.
deacons serve in soup kitchens, others in jail ministry, others
in hospitals and nursing homes, and
various other service ministries. They are committed to ministries of charity and promoting
social justice within their communities and places of work. They seek to give a voice to those who have none just
as Jesus often did. They
seek shelter for the homeless and strive to improve the living
conditions of all.
also work in their parish providing needed programs such as
catechesis in the Rite of Christian Initiation (RCIA), Baptism,
Faith Formation, pre-Cana and others. Their goal is to turn these ministries of service
over to parishioners, empowering them to exercise their leadership
deacons work in Diocesan Offices providing outreach to parishes
in the Diocese.
liturgical role of the deacon is to assist the presider at Eucharistic
this capacity the deacon proclaims the Word of God and is the
minister the cup of the Precious Blood. If given the facilities at ordination, he may offer the
deacon may also: lead Sunday Liturgy In The Absence Of A Priest;
assists and witness marriage vows during Mass (presides –
bless rings, and witness marriage vows outside of Mass), presides
at Funeral Liturgy outside of Mass; baptize children outside
of Mass; and, presides at Exposition Of The Blessed Sacrament. At the celebrations outside of Mass, the deacon offers
the homily. When
he is acting in this public ordained role, he is vested in his
alb, stole and dalmatic.
roles provide service and reflect the true meaning of the word diaconia – service. For more information check the “About
of Deacon Candidates are expected to support their husbands. They are also encouraged to participate
in their spouse’s discernment and formation. If the wife does not support the candidate, he
cannot continue in the selection process. More information on the role of the candidate and their
wives can be found under the link Deacons
nights are scheduled for men who believe
they have a call to service as an ordained deacon. They provide additional information on the process
to become a deacon. If
you are married, you are encouraged to have your wife accompany
you to the presentation. Please go to the calendar in the “Events”
for date and time of the information night.
application process to become a deacon begins once the FMP program
has been completed. A
potential candidate should make his desire to become
a deacon known to the FMP staff so the staff has the opportunity
to provide an evaluation of his call and discernment to become
a deacon. Upon
completion of FMP, he applies and seeks admission into the Aspirant
Path in Deacon Formation.
Aspirant Path is a distinctive program that provides for a thorough
discernment of a deacon vocation. Therefore, it provides an appropriate initiation into
deacon spirituality; supervised pastoral experiences, especially
among the poor and marginalized; and adequate assessment of
the aspirant’s potential to be accepted for candidate
formation, and ultimately toward ordination. The Aspirant Path also enables the Formation personnel
to create an environment in which a wife of a married aspirant
can be appropriately prepared to give her consent to his continuation,
and more essentially, to ascertain her compatibility with her
husband’s deacon vocation and eventual ministry. It provides the Director for Deacon Formation, and those involved
in assisting him in the discernment process, additional time
to further observe and evaluate the aspirant’s capability
and readiness to be nominated to the bishop for acceptance as
a candidate for ordination as a deacon.
following is a list of documents that are required to be submitted
during the application process:
A church certificate
of Baptism, Confirmation, and if relevant, Marriage –
all certificates must be issued/dated within the time of
Proof of age.
A completed application
form, and as appropriate, a consent form regarding psychological
consultation and confidentiality of consultative reports.
A recent photograph
of the applicant and if married, his wife, for administrative
and faculty identification.
A personal handwritten
statement from the wife of a married applicant indicating
her initial consent for his application and entrance into
Letters of recommendation.
A recent medical
An official transcript
of past or present academic studies, if applicable.
A written report
of the rector of any previous house in which the candidate
has spent time in formation, including "explicit reference
to the evaluations of the candidate and the votes he received."
A background check
under the auspices of the diocesan deacon office.
Proof of Virtus
A letter of recommendation
from the applicant’s employer.
more information on the application process, contact the Office
of the Director for Deacon Formation and/or link onto
our Formation page.