National Directory



of his wife’s readiness is also to be made. In a Circular Letter directed to diocesan ordinaries on assessing the readiness of candidates for ordination, the Congregation for DivineWorship and the Discipline of the Sacraments recalls that “St. Paul’s admonition remains true for the Church today, as it did in his own time: ‘Do not be hasty in the laying-on of hands.’” 5 215. Regarding the precise number of hours for lectures, seminars, and related educational activities specified in the Basic Norms for the Formation of Permanent Deacons , 6 the objective is to guarantee the planning and implementation of an integral and substantive program of initial for mation that adequately prepares a candidate to represent the Church as a deacon. A substantive program includes not only class preparation, participation, and attendance, but also seminars, workshops, pastoral placements, theological reflection, shared opportunities for spiritual growth (e.g., liturgical celebrations and prayer, spiritual conferences, retreats), individual spiritual direction, and other formation experiences. Whenever possible, the candidate should receive spiritual direction in the language with which he is most comfortable. Diocesan compliance with this requirement and others as specified in the Basic Norms for the Formation of Permanent Deacons and in this National Directory may be verified by the review of its formation program by CCLV. III. Formation Environments 216. The communities in which the candidate participates influence the formation process. 7 Those entrusted with initial formation must take care to assess the value of these environments as resources for discern ing, supporting, and nurturing a diaconal vocation.

Candidate Formation Community

217. The candidate community should become primarily an integrating

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