Formation is underway for three men from the Roman Catholic Diocese of Saskatoon who are discerning a call to the Permanent Diaconate.
The three aspirants to the diaconate from the Saskatoon diocese — Paul Wheeler, Ryan LeBlanc and Nicholas Blom — recently attended a learning and training session with three aspirants from the Archdiocese of Regina — Rob Two, Ken Fahlman, and Martin Kondzielewski. The formation session was held at St. Peter’s Abbey in Muenster from Sept. 6 to 8, 2019.
Although a number of deacons from other dioceses have served here, the Roman Catholic Diocese of Saskatoon has never before ordained permanent Deacons.
A 1998 Vatican declaration about the Formation of Deacons states: “The permanent diaconate, restored by the Second Vatican Council, in complete continuity with ancient tradition and the specific decision of the Council of Trent, has flourished in these last decades in many parts of the Church — with promising results, especially for the urgent missionary work of new evangelization.”
As with other Holy Orders, the discernment process for Permanent Deacons involves both the candidate and the faith community. The permanent diaconate is open to married men 35 years or older, or to single men over 25 years of age.
The permanent diaconate is open to married men over 35 years of age, and single men over 25 years of age – but details about how permanent deacons are formed and how they function varies from diocese to diocese. After a discernment process launched by then-Bishop Donald Bolen, the Roman Catholic Diocese of Saskatoon began planning for a permanent diaconate program in 2015.