Saturday, September 14, 2013

Aspirancy Formation Saturday - #1

Met with the other ten men and their wives at Sacred Heart Major Seminary.  It is the first of many Saturday formation meetings, to be held the second Saturday of every month, with a "break" in July and August.  The "break" is for our summer ministry work. 

For our meeting this month most of the day was spent with each of the couples speaking for ten minutes on their background, how we got to where we are today, a concern we might have regarding diaconal discernment, and hopes that we hold.  I am humbled by what I heard today.  The faith, the spirituality, the love of the couples to one another, and the variety of ministries these men and their wives have fulfilled was just inspiring.  When you are constantly bombarded with horrific acts man perpetuates on his fellow man during the evening news (or on one of the many 24 hour news channels), it was refreshing to hear of act of love, hope, and charity.

The afternoon we spent time going over how to pray the Liturgy of the Hours.  While there are numerous electronic versions of the Liturgy of the Hours, the formation team wants us to learn how to pray the Hours out of a book, either the four volume set, or the single volume, Christian Prayer.  Our wives are encouraged to pray the Hours with us, so after the session Juanita and I stopped and picked up a copy of Christian Prayer for her.  We took Juanita's copy with us to Mass to have it blessed.  Fr. Vic was presiding.  He had spoken to the Aspirants at the retreat in August, so having him bless Juanita's Christian Prayer was fitting.

Next Sunday we are attending the Rite of Candidacy which is being held at St. Isaac Jogues in St. Clair Shores.  While our attendance is not mandatory, it falls under the category of "Also-Expected Events" it will be a good to witness this rite.  A year from now I could be going through the Right of Candidacy along with the other ten Aspirants.


Saturday, September 7, 2013

Spiritual Director

Today I met with Msgr. John to see if he might serve as my Spiritual Director.  As mentioned in an earlier post, we are to meet with our Spiritual Director on a monthly basis.  While what is discussed between an Aspirant and his Spiritual Director is confidential, the Diaconate Formation team will check with the Spiritual Director to make certain the monthly meetings are taking place.

We talked for about 45 minutes about my past, why I think I'm being called to the diaconate, and about my prayer life.  I asked him a few questions as well.  At the end I asked if he would be open to serving as my Spiritual Director.  He said yes he would.  He encouraged me to keep a journal so that as thoughts, issues, or questions came up through the month I could write them down and bring that with me to share with him.  We meet again in late October.