Calling to become a Deacon


Good afternoon everyone. A little insight into my current situation. I am 33 years old, have never been baptized and am currently taking RCIA classes. I have been a nurse since 2004 and loved every minute of it. In 2011, I was diagnosed with a bone disorder that has left me unable to continue in my profession. Truth be told, I have been unable to work since April of 2013. Through many tough times, through prayer and reflection, I feel I have been called to become a Deacon. I have openly discussed this with my wife and the rest of my family, they are supportive. I have met with our local priest and he is fully supportive. I can only think my plans are to use my nursing background to help others. I have many ideas on how to help. I am open to dealing with the marginalized as most of my employment has dealt with this group. My question is, how steadfast is the rule of being employed to provide for your family? I am visiting an orthopedic surgeon this Friday to discuss options. Can anyone give me any insight? Thank you for your time.


I could be wrong, but I don’t think there is a “steadfast rule” about being employed to provide for your family, just that your family is being provided for.

You might want to discuss with your Pastor, Bishop or Seminary.


Each diocese uses its own discretion in this regard. However, you say are presently attending RCIA. This would present a bigger issue for most diaconate programs. Most diocese want to see some significant involvement in parish life as a Catholic before they consider someone a serious candidate for the diaconate. I suggest you have a chat with the director of diaconal formation in your diocese before you let yourself get very far down the discernment path. Good luck and God Bless you.


My friend is not Catholic, but I see a parallel in what he does to what you are considering.

He is an ordained minister and works as a hospice chaplain.

When my father was hospitalized, the priest that worked that hospital was not there everyday. There were Protestant chaplains and deacons there everyday, and we enjoyed their visits, but we would have very much enjoyed a daily visit from a Catholic deacon.


This is correct.

Most diocese or orders won’t consider a convert for formation in Holy Orders until several years after his reception into the Church.

May God Bless you abundantly in your vocation!


Thank you all so much for the responses!!! I know I have work ahead of me and certainly understand and appreciate needing more time prior to any formation. My goal is to finish RCIA, attend a lay ministry formation and above all continue to serve people with what abilities I have. God Bless!!!

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