I've been holding something back from many people for the last several weeks. Very few people knew about it but I'm finally throwing it out there----I'm a diaconate drop-out. Yes, I've discerned that the diaconate isn't for me--at least not at this point in my life.
I'd been contemplating the diaconate for over two years. For the longest time I seemed like something I could be really good at--and I do think I would be a good deacon.
But every since the first get together dinner back in February I have had uneasy feelings about it. I had decided to stick it out throught the aspirancy because I didn't want to be running away from God. And then some sort of diaconate function would come up. I would get incredibly uneasy. I wanted to be ANYWHERE but there. I think if I'm doing something that I am passionate about and that would be life changing like ordination I should be excited about it. I was anything but excited about it.
It seemed to have turned my faith into a job or a chore. I want to pray because I want (or need) to pray, not because I'm directed to. I want to volunteer how I want to volunteer. I want to worship when and where I want to worship not where someone else tells me. I want to dress how I want to not the way someone else tells me. I want to blog how I want without the fear of being second guessed. I realize that doesn't say a lot about my obedience but it's how I feel.
Interestingly enough, I made my decision at my Cursillo weekend back in September. I realized that the formation process just doesn't fit into my life right now. The week-end prior to my Cursillo, I had to be up for over 24 hours for a formation event. Then, I had to move days off for this Cursillo weekend (that I was doing as a retreat for the diaconate) and ended up missing a ton of time with my family and was just overworked. I just couldn't do that for four years.
When I would think of the diaconate I would be stressed. When I would imagine myself out of the diaconate I would be at peace. I think that was Gods way of telling me that it isn't my calling. I don't think its the devils doing.
Interestingly enough, my Cursillio weekend had another impact on my discernment. I was able to see and experience these incredible Holy lay people. I realized that there are other ways that I can win souls for God. I don't have to be ordained to further my spiritual journey or to become a saint myself. I have a passion for youth ministry. I have touched many people with my blog. I don't need the diaconate to become more holy. There are pleanty of pious lay people.
I will say that I'm glad I went through the process. I met plenty of great people. It is a great aspirant class. The Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph is very fortunate. I would definately encourage anyone who feels that ping from God to check it out and discern if it's for them or not.
I won't say that the diaconate is totally out of the picture. God may have planted the seed in my head for a reason but right now just isn't the time for me. Maybe in five years. Maybe in ten years. My family will all be older. I may be in a position where I have a Monday-Friday position on the police department. Who knows. I do think I would be a really good deacon. Now is just not the time.