Application Process

Screening, Selection, and Admission of Candidates for the Permanent Diaconate

deacon from backPermanent deacons are best described by who they are rather than what they do. The deacon is the animator and promoter of what the community of faith must be–a community of service.

In accordance with the Basic Norms for the Formation of Permanent Deacons, the Directory for the Ministry and Life of Permanent Deacons, inquirers for the permanent diaconate should posses certain spiritual and evangelical qualities. Among these are a sound faith, good Christian reputation, active involvement in the Church’s apostolate, personal integrity, maturity and holiness, regular participation in the Church’s sacramental life, evidence of recognized, ongoing commitment to the Church’s life and service, a positive and stable marriage, if married, or a mature celibate state of life, if single, active membership in a parish community, capacity for obedience and fraternal communion, and a deep spiritual and prayer life. (BNFPD #31-33)

Applicants must give evidence of an overall personal balance, moral character, physical and psychological health. Applicants applying for the Diocese of Youngstown must undergo a thorough screening, which includes personal interviews, a psychological evaluation and a background check. The Office of the Permanent Diaconate facilitates the application procedure.

The minimum age to begin the formation process is thirty-five years of age. The maximum age within the Diocese of Youngstown for ordination is sixty-five years of age.

The formation period extends over a period of four years.