Deacon Formation Program

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Is God Calling You?

The Archdiocese of Seattle has opened the inquiry year for the permanent diaconate for Catholic men generally aged 35 to 56* interested in learning more about being a deacon.
*Pastors may petition for an exception

If you feel God is calling you to become a permanent deacon, read below to learn about the process and how to be considered a candidate for the Permanent Diaconate.

Please note: all inquiry sessions, materials, application, and formation is in English.

Qualities we look for:

 Those who aspire to be candidates for the diaconate should exhibit certain characteristics that demonstrate a readiness for formation:

  • A man of prayer, who demonstrates this quality in his daily life, and in his full and active participation in the liturgy
  • A Catholic who is fully initiated and in good standing with the Catholic Church
  • Commitment to serving the needs of the Church, especially the poor and vulnerable
  • A lifetime pattern of spiritual, pastoral, human and intellectual growth
  • Solid moral character demonstrating the human virtues of prudence, justice, fortitude, and temperance
  • Humility, good listening skills and openness to conversion
  • Empathy, constancy, sincerity, truthfulness, patience enabling good relationships with others
  • Preparedness to understand, present and promote the teachings of the Church


Read here what Pope Francis expects of deacons today, during his address to the deacons of Rome on June 19, 2021.

Phase 1: INQUIRY
The Inquiry phase is concluded.



Important message to applicants from Fr. Dion

Applications for the deacon formation program are now open!
There are five parts to the application
(click below to access each part):

  1. Deacon Formation Program Application
  2. Letters of Reference Send this link to the following people:
    1. Pastor/Priest Administrator/Pastoral Coordinator of the parish or faith community where you are registered
    2. Your employer
    3. A staff person or a volunteer member of your parish or faith community who is familiar with your current ministry (deacon's recommendation is desired)
    4. A person who has worked with you in a church or community setting
    5. A person who is not related to you and can provide a good character reference
  3. Attestation Authorization
  4. Social Media Acknowledgment
  5. Spouse's Application, if applicable

Applicants are fully responsible to complete #1, #2, #3, and #4 of the application, including uploading all of the required documents.
Your spouse, if applicable, is required to complete #5

The completed application packet is due by December 8, 2023.

Please note: We will not be contacting you for missing information. Upon completion of all items, you will receive a confirmation email.

If you are accepted into the program you are required to be present at the following formation weekends:

August 16-18
September 13-15
October 18-20
November 15-17
December 13-15
January 24-26
February 21-23
March 21-23
April 25-27
May 16-18
June 13-15
August 15-17
September 19-21
October 17-19
November 14-16
December 12-14
January 9-12
February 20-22
March 20-22
April 17-19
May 15-17
June 12-14
August 21-23
September 18-20
October 16-18
November 13-15
December 11-13
January 8-10
February 19-21
March 19-21
April 16-18
May 14-16
June 11-13


August 20-22
September 17-19
October 15-17
November 12-14
December 10-12
January 21-23
February 11-13
March 17-19
April 21-23
May 19-21
June 9-11
August 18-20
September 15-17
October 20-22
November 10-12
December 8-10
January 19-21
February 9-11
March 16-18
April 20-22
May 18-20
June 8-10

For questions email



Your full application packet will be reviewed and final recommendations will be made to Archbishop Etienne March 2024, followed by final decisions and welcome letters. August 2024 begins the first formation weekend. Discernment extends throughout the entire aspirant formation process allowing for personal observations, dialogue, interviews, and additional assessments of each aspirant.

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Please contact Deacon Eric Paige, Director of Formation and Deacon Services, at

“Deacons share in Christ’s mission and grace in a special way. The sacrament of Holy Orders marks them with an imprint (‘character’) which cannot be removed and which configures them to Christ, who made himself the ‘deacon’ or servant of all. Among other tasks, it is the task of deacons to assist the bishop and priests in the celebration of the divine mysteries, above all the Eucharist, in the distribution of Holy Communion, in assisting at and blessing marriages, in the proclamation of the Gospel and preaching, in presiding over funerals, and in dedicating themselves to the various ministries of charity.”

~ Catechism of the Catholic Church, 1570