I had a question was hoping someone might be able to answer. If I were called as a layman to join a third order such as the Dominicans or Franciscans, but a few years later was called to enter the Diaconate and eventually be ordained a Deacon, how would the two intermingle? Would I have to give up the third order to be ordained a Deacon? Can someone who is ordained a Deacon not join a third order since he would now be considered clergy and not a layperson?
The Franciscan Secular Third Order takes Deacons. That’s what I’m discerning
no in our fraternity we have a deacon. It would work well because you can intermingle the deaconate with Franciscan/Dominican spirituality.
Yes the Secular Franciscan Order allows diocesan priests and deacons to join and any members that feel called to start the process are allowed and even encouraged. There are currently two diocesan deacons in our fraternity. Both became deacons after they were professed. Not all third orders allow it so if you decide to go to another charism check with their Rule.
Yes you can pursue a Diaconate later, and what a wonderful spiritual foundation the order will provide for you as you embark on this career. Intermingle? more like shoe-in :). You may find that you will need to schedule some of your ecclesial or spare time for fraternal meetings, and obtain the occasional permission for absence from the fraternity, which is only proper for Franciscans. But all these tasks are complimentary as we carry on our mission to emulate Christ.