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In the Catholic Church, the diaconate is the first of three ranks in ordained ministry. Deacons preparing for the priesthood are transitional deacons. Those not planning to be ordained priests are called permanent deacons. Married men may be ordained permanent deacons, and single men may be ordained with a commitment to celibacy.

The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops Secretariat of Clergy, Consecrated Life and Vocations supports the activities of the bishops' Committee on Clergy, Consecrated Life, and Vocations in the restoration of the Diaconate and the development of diaconal ministry. It also assists and coordinates the development of diaconal formation programs on the diocesan and national levels. The Secretariat assists the General Secretary of the USCCB in responding to all matters concerning the ministry of deacons in the Church in the United States. It provides services and liaison support to national organizations and directors of diocesan diaconate offices.

New and Noteworthy

Deacon Mission Partners Conference | Sept. 26-28, 2014 | Chicago, IL

Preaching the Mystery of Faith: The Sunday Homily

2014 Diaconate Report from CARA:
A Portrait of the Permanent Diaconate: A Study for the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops 2013-2014

Archived CARA Reports:

Fr. McKnight’s PowerPoint presentation for NADD Convention 2014

More Information

The National Directory for the Formation, Ministry and Life of Permanent Deacons in the United States

Renewed Recognitio of the National Directory

Information and Resources

Homiletics Resources

Diaconate Diocesan Offices

National Organizations

2010 Report from CARA

Frequently Asked Questions About Deacons

Protocol for the Incardination or Excardination of Deacons

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