Deacons share in Christ’s mission and grace in a special way. The sacrament of Holy Orders marks them with an imprint (“character”) which cannot be removed and which configures them to Christ, who made himself the “deacon” or servant of all.
Sharing in Christ’s mission and grace in a special way
The Role of the Deacon
Among other tasks, it is the task of deacons to assist the bishop and priests in the celebration of the divine mysteries, above all the Eucharist, in the distribution of Holy Communion, in assisting at and blessing marriages, in the proclamation of the Gospel and preaching, in presiding over funerals, and in dedicating themselves to the various ministries of charity. (Catechism of the Catholic Church – 1570)
The Permanent Diaconate Formation Program is charged with the important work of providing the formation needed for those men who are aspirants and candidates in preparation for ordination to the permanent diaconate.
Its work is guided by the National Directory for the Formation, Ministry and Life of Permanent Deacons in the United States where we find the following words.
“It was for serious pastoral and theological reasons that the (Second Vatican) Council decided to reestablish the Order of Deacons as a permanent rank in the hierarchy of the Church. The Sacrament of Holy Orders marks deacons with an “imprint (‘character’) which cannot be removed and which configures them to Christ who made himself the ‘deacon’ or servant of all.”
This Office looks to the future as it prepares men to minister as deacons in parishes and other ministerial situations so that they may preach the Gospel, serve the poor and assist in the celebration of the Sacred Liturgy of the Church.