National Directory



context, the pastoral dimension in initial formation is not merely an apprenticeship to familiarize the participant in diaconal formation with some pastoral techniques. Its aim, however, is to initiate the participant into the sensitivity of what it means to be a disciple of Jesus, who came to serve and not to be served. Pastoral assignments embody this orien tation, promoting learning through active engagement in a pastoral sit uation. Pastoral assignments foster a general integration in the forma tional process, forging a close link between the human, spiritual, and intellectual dimensions in formation. Evangelization; Catholic schools; catechetics; religious education; youth ministry; social justice outreach opportunities; rural ministry; ecumenism; prison ministry; the care of the sick, elderly, and dying; and service opportunities in varied cultural settings—all these indicate the breadth of experiences to which the participant may be exposed in the course of his pastoral formation. 136. The pastoral dimension in diaconal formation should strengthen and enhance the exercise of the prophetic, priestly, and servant-leadership functions—deriving from his baptismal consecration—already lived and exercised by the participant in diaconal formation. In each stage of forma tion, he must be taught how to proclaim the Christian message and teach it, how to lead others in communal celebrations of liturgical prayer, and how to witness to the Church in a Christian service marked by charity.The demonstration of pastoral skills is a crucial element in the assessment of fit ness for ordination.Therefore, the qualities to be developed for these tasks are as follows: a spirit of pastoral responsibility and servant-leadership, generosity and perseverance, ability to collaborate, creativity, respect for ecclesial communion, and filial obedience to the diocesan bishop.Through his participation in pastoral assignments, the participant should have a gen uine confidence in his abilities and a realistic sense of his limitations. 137. Initial pastoral formation should take into account that those preparing for the diaconate have already been involved in the mission of the Church. Pastoral Dimension Objectives

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