Date: May 23, 2008
To: Spiritual Directors for the men in Diaconal Formation
From: Deacon Dennis Dorner
I have heard that there might be some confusion regarding the spiritual direction policy for the men in Diaconal Formation.
The requirement that all men in formation be involved in spiritual direction continues.
While we would prefer that spiritual directors be either clergy or religious, we will be relaxing the requirement that it must be a priest. This is simply in response to the reality that demand exceeds supply. We will work with the men to identify a good director.
One significant change in the Formation program is that the Archbishop has named Father Tim Hepburn as the Spiritual Director for the Diaconate. Father Tim will be responsible for setting the overall spiritual tone of not only the Formation Program but he will also assist the Office of the Permanent Diaconate in scheduling liturgies, retreats, and ongoing spiritual development opportunities.
Evidently there was some misunderstanding that would indicate that the current spiritual directors would be in the formation “chain of command” and that they would report somehow to the Office of the Diaconate or the new Spiritual Director. This is NOT the case. Since spiritual direction is an issue of internal forum the only requirement we have for the men’s spiritual directors is to report that they are meeting on a regular basis with the candidate.
I trust this information is helpful. If you have any questions please do not hesitate to contact me.