Exploring the Diaconate

Deacons: Missionaries in the Parish and the World

Deacons have faithfully served at the altar, in parishes, and in the community for the past 50 years.  The Council proclaimed the Sacred Order of Deacons to be “a driving force for the Church’s services or diakonia” through:

  • Celebrating sacraments, assisting at liturgies, and preaching
  • Evangelizing and catechizing
  • Works of charity
  • Animating the faithful

The Inquiry Process

Do you believe the Lord may be calling you to consider this ministry?

An Exciting Time of Inquiry

The first steps of inquiry are an exciting time of learning about the role of a deacon as well as the path to becoming one.  First and foremost, it is crucial to gain an understanding of vocation discernment.  Discernment is an ongoing process where we truly understand what our God desires of us in fulfilling our baptismal commitment.  To aid your discernment, you may wish to undertake the self-directed retreat, Five Days with the Lord.


  • Have a heart-to-heart conversation with your family and your pastor
  • Attend an upcoming Exploring the Diaconate informational evening at 7:30pm

Each year, IDS provides Exploring the Diaconate sessions to raise vocation awareness and provide information about the formation program and application process.  We are here to answer any questions you may have.  Sessions are scheduled both in-person and remote. 

Check out our 2022-2023-Exploring-the-Diaconate-Schedule.pdf sessions schedule.  Wives of married inquirers are strongly encouraged to attend.  

Please note that the application deadline for the 2023-2024 Aspirancy Stage is  July 15, 2023.   Regretfully, IDS cannot accept late applications for the upcoming formation year.

For more information, contact Deacon Bob Puhala, Director, bpuhala@usml.edu or (847) 837-4564.

We look forward to meeting you!

There are many other preliminary questions in your mind including the role of your wife and what the four-year process of formation entails.  These will be answered at the Exploring the Diaconate Information Session.