The Catholic Church is blessed to have men serve as Permanent Deacons. Those men who are called to the Permanent Deaconate can be married, and they are ordained usually after a rigorous period of five years of training and formation. Many Permanent Deacons have secular jobs to support their families and strive to balance family, Church, work, and other responsibilities.
In an address to Permanent Deacons in Rome, as reported in the media outlet, Exaudi Catholic News, Pope Francis challenged the Deacons to be men of holiness and service. In addition to being humble servants, Our Holy Father stated, “I expect you to be good spouses and good fathers. And good grandparents. This will give hope and consolation to couples who are going through difficult times and who will find in your genuine simplicity an outstretched hand.” Our Holy Father also reminded the Deacons “to help the Christian community to recognize Jesus in the poor, and distant, as He knocks on our doors through them.”
As we reflect on these words of Our Holy Father, we should appreciate that Permanent Deacons serve the Church in many ways. As previously noted, they assist the priest at Mass, preside at baptisms, teach in our faith formation programs, visit the sick and the homebound, prepare couples for marriage, and counsel couples who may be struggling in their marriages, preside at Benediction and Holy Hours and participate in many of our Church ministries and activities.
The following “Prayer for Deacons” asks the Lord to guide Deacons in their ministry:
O God, Father of us all, look with favor on those whom You have called to the sacred and ancient ministry of the diaconate.
Through the intercession of St. Stephen, grant grace to your deacons as they minister in charity to the poor, proclaim the Holy Gospel at Mass and assist Your priest at the Altar.
Keep close to Your heart Lord, the wives, and children of permanent Deacons, and grant that the witness of their husbands and fathers may bring about holiness and virtue in each family member.
We ask this through Jesus Christ who is Lord, forever and ever. Amen.
As we reflect on this prayer, we are reminded that we have many faithful, dedicated, and holy Deacons serving us at Saint Brigid. Please avail yourself of an opportunity to thank them for their service and continue to wish them well in their ministry. Please also continue to pray for vocations to the priesthood, diaconate, and religious life.