National Directory



The Family Community

221. The family is the primary community accompanying the candidate on the formative journey. For married candidates, the communion of life and love, established by the marriage covenant and consecrated by the Sacrament of Matrimony, offers a singular contribution to the for mation process. 12 The single candidate’s family also contributes to his formation; those responsible for implementing the formation process should consult with the single candidate to ascertain the strength of his support from his family and friends in order to ensure that his vocation is also encouraged and fostered. 222. Those responsible for implementing the formation process are to thor oughly determine the candidate’s employment situation—his market place formation community—and its impact on his preparation, dis cernment, and readiness for ordination to the diaconate. St. John Paul II stressed the importance of this particular formation environment at a plenary assembly of the Congregation for the Clergy: “It is the circum stances of his life—prudently evaluated by the candidate himself and by the diocesan bishop, before ordination—which should, if necessary, be adapted to the exercise of his ministry by facilitating it in every way.” 13 IV. The Dimensions of Formation in the Candidate Stage 223. Those responsible for the candidate stage of formation should be thoroughly familiar with the doctrinal understanding of the diacon ate, the ministry and life of deacons, the dimensions of formation, and the discernment of a diaconal vocation described earlier in this National Directory . These components have a common goal: to enable the candidate to demonstrate an appropriate level of preparedness for The Marketplace Community

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