Criteria needed to become a Permanent Deacon

The man who aspires to become a Permanent Deacon is one who has a genuine calling to serve and not be served nor is he seeking the status of being a member of the clergy. If a single man becomes a Deacon he is bound to remain celibate and cannot marry. If a married man becomes a Deacon he is bound to celibacy if he becomes a widower. The minimum age of ordination to the order of Permanent Deacon is 35 years old. Since the formation programme is at least 5 years, a man may commence formation anytime after the age of 30 years old but not later than 60 years old.

Due to the nature of the academic formation, a man must have at least a grade 12 level of education and must be fully conversant in both spoken and written English which is the formation language medium. He must be a citizen of South Africa or hold a valid Permanent Residence Permit. He must not be married more than once unless he has remarried after the death of his wife. He should be active in parish ministry. He should have the support of his wife, his parish Priest and the Parish Pastoral Council. He should be gainfully employed and/or be financially self-sufficient.


Find out more about becoming a Deacon

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A Deacon’s Reflection is by Deacon Greg Garnie of the Archdiocese of Johannesburg, South Africa. Permanent Deacons is from the Congregation for Catholic Education & the Congregation for the Clergy.

Both books are available from Pauline’s Catholic Bookshop in Kensington, Johannesburg. A Deacon’s Reflection is also available from in paperback and kindle form.