Deaconate formation


#1

Hello,

i am begining the long journey towards the Permanent diaconate.

In my diocese a man must complete a 2 year lay ministry formation program beofore advancing to the diaconate. This program is done with other people throughout my diocese who wan’t to serve the church in various capacities including the deaconate. I am the only man in my formation group though.

I live in what I would call a pretty liberal diocese and I consider myself orthodox in my catholic belief.

I have begun the ministry formation program and am getting some serious liberal vibes (dissent) from the whole ordeal.

I have a hunch the ministry formation is to weed out guys like me.

My question is, should I just go through the motions with this obviously dissenting 2 year prep before deaconate formation or should I be myself which obviously would pretty much doom my admission into the deaconate formation.

ANy suggestions.


#2

be yourself, and stick to the things you believe…

a vocation isn’t a vocation if it’s not honest, and you
have to be honest with yourself first…

:slight_smile:


#3

Stand up for the truth and thank God He gave you the hard path of suffering before you.


#4

well I guess that kinda leaves my dicese without orthodox thinking people.

Why can’t I just be myself but stay quiet?


#5

[quote=decn2b]well I guess that kinda leaves my diocese without orthodox thinking people.
[/quote]

Please give you Bishop every benefit of the doubt. Read and listen to everything he says closely. Pray for insight.

Why can’t I just be myself but stay quiet?

Obsfucation and lies are not the ways of God.


#6

I imagine a scene where particular views are being spoken about to the group by someone who holds heterodox beliefs. Some would claim that standing up for orthodoxy would require you to have a debate with the person on the spot. However, I have learned that sometimes all that is required is asking the right questions instead of giving the right answers when it comes to this type of situation. This would allow you to be true to te faith and most possibly continue in the formation program. If it were not for men doing this very same thing in my diocese we would have no good deacons, however, we have many. Prudence is the virtue that is most important in this situation. Also, take the time to be mentored by a good Orthodox priest to help balance the information that you will be getting in this program. If it is God’s will that you are to be ordained a Deacon then if you trust in HIm it will happen. A medetation on the psalms from Sunday Week I in the Divine Office will help you much in your situation.


#7

I sympathize. I hate to say this, but you might have to be as wise as a serpent and innocent as a dove. Some of these programs are precisely designed to get rid of the orthodox. You may have to learn their lingo and avoid dissenting from their dissent. You may be right, but they don’t care. The bishop will probably believe them rather then you. After all he appointed them, so to do otherwise would mean he made a mistake. Bishops don’t like admitting that. However, we need orthodox vocations. If you have to fly under the radar then do it. Offer it up. Later when they have gone to their “reward” you will still be up here fixing what they broke. I have had to tell seminarians to “shut up and take it”. The dissenters are fanatics who will do their best to destroy an solid vocation. They know the threat and that they are aging fast. So be careful and exercise prudence.


#8

Prudence will be my virtue then.

I believe that if gods will is it then so be it. However i absolutely love the wise as a serpent innocent as a dove tidbit.

I think this can be done under the radar.

I will pray.

But you can’t believe how bad this is. I mean here I am an orthodox 38 y/o husband of 4 sitting in sunday afternoon coffees with a bunch of extremely angry middle aged women. I have no choice in this matter. If I feel called to the deaconate then this is where I am supposed to be. Worse yet I have to submit reflection papers to the “boss”. I am not talking about the bishop boss either.

Pray for me y’all


#9

The 2 year ministry formation is standard (as far as I know, for the US). It’s not intended to weed out the orthodox, although some might be trying to use it that way. Have faith, be vigilant.


#10

[quote=decn2b]Prudence will be my virtue then.

I believe that if gods will is it then so be it. However i absolutely love the wise as a serpent innocent as a dove tidbit.

I think this can be done under the radar.

I will pray.

But you can’t believe how bad this is. I mean here I am an orthodox 38 y/o husband of 4 sitting in sunday afternoon coffees with a bunch of extremely angry middle aged women. I have no choice in this matter. If I feel called to the deaconate then this is where I am supposed to be. Worse yet I have to submit reflection papers to the “boss”. I am not talking about the bishop boss either.

Pray for me y’all
[/quote]

Remeber that God made us with only one mouth but with two ears. Listen to the gaggle and use what you hear to help advance the cause of truth.


#11

With all the talk of standing up for what you believe etc. I want to sound a note of caution. They don’t like to ordain trouble makers. The good news is they can’t really, or won’t, “un-ordain” you. Get ordained. ** Keep your eyes on the prize. **

I am also in a somewhat “progressive” dioceses and I have some contact with the seminarians. They have a reputation of being a very conservative bunch and some of the instructors are not pleased about that fact. So the seminarians just stay out of trouble and don’t challenge un-necessairly. They are keeping their eyes on the prize. Don’t sell out, but don’t try to change the world you live in while they still have the power to throw you out.

In my dioceses we have a choice of a 3 year masters degree or a 2 year certificate prior to deaconate formation. The degree (or the certificate) are just the dues you gotta pay. Those who run these programs are more “progressive” than those who run the deaconate program but the progressives have NO input on who is accepted into formation. The same is probably true for you. is your pastor in your corner? That is important.

This advice was very good: " … but you might have to be as wise as a serpent and innocent as a dove."


#12

[quote=decn2b]Prudence will be my virtue then.

I believe that if gods will is it then so be it. However i absolutely love the wise as a serpent innocent as a dove tidbit.

I think this can be done under the radar.

I will pray.

But you can’t believe how bad this is. I mean here I am an orthodox 38 y/o husband of 4 sitting in sunday afternoon coffees with a bunch of extremely angry middle aged women. I have no choice in this matter. If I feel called to the deaconate then this is where I am supposed to be. Worse yet I have to submit reflection papers to the “boss”. I am not talking about the bishop boss either.

Pray for me y’all
[/quote]

I’ll definately pray for you. Perhaps, God is calling you in order to change this bunch. Change often occurs by example rather than using words. After all, if they are an angry bunch, then something is wrong with them. No amount of words will quell an angry bunch. But examples will go a long way.

Above all, look on every one with love in your heart. This is what Jesus would do.

I’ll pray that you survive this test of faith.


#13

decn2b as soon as I read this thread it reminded me of today’s reading from 2Maccabee 6. Old Eleazar took the long hard choice and could have saved his life by taking the easy choice (Pretending to eat pork even though they would switch it to something kosher) and not technically violating God’s laws.

Ask God the path will be made known. I’ll pray for you


#14

Well after reading the scripture passage in timothy pertaining to deacons I can now understand that the test is to be expected.

Timothy 3-10
And let these first be tested; then, if being beyond reproach, let them serve as deacons


#15

I thought one was called to hold an office?
If your called by God who can stop you?


#16

Be yourself and don’t shy away from being yourself.

If you encounter heterodoxy, confront it in a charitable way. One of the things a deacon is called for is to preach Truth.

If someone is using this to ‘weed out’ orthodox candidates, fine. Accept that, but under no circumstances should you present yourself as something you are not.

Nor should you remain quiet when Falsehood is being presented as Truth.

But offer correction in a charitable, loving way.

BTW, I’m in diaconal formation myself, in the Archdiocese of Detroit. Fortunately, the situation here seems much better.

We go through the Parish Ministry work as a diaconal formation class, and the instructors at Sacred Heart Seminary have all been top notch :thumbsup:


#17

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