Permanent Diaconate

Aspirancy: The Retreat in Everyday Life

The heart of the Aspirancy Program consists of the “Retreat in Everyday Life” following the Spiritual Exercises of Saint Ignatius of Loyola.

Each candidate and his spouse are asked to commit themselves to 30-45 minutes of formal prayer each day. Each “retreatant ” meets at least once, preferably twice monthly with his spiritual director to share and process the experience. On the off week, retreatants will meet in small faith sharing groups, if possible, to share and support each other on this journey. One of the two group meeting times per month will be during the monthly weekend meetings of all the Aspirants and wives.

More than content, the Retreat in Everyday Life consists of the process that unfolds under the lead of the Holy Spirit. The spiritual director helps process with the retreatant the graces of the prayer and the further direction the Spirit seems to be indicating. Some of the dynamics include knowing that I am loved by God – even as weak and sinful. The Second Dynamic contemplates Public Life of Christ, while at the same time beginning to consider one’s “Election”.

The Election usually concludes at the beginning of the Third Dynamic, which contemplates the Passion and Death of Jesus. In our particular circumstances, the Election will usually involve a life choice for Gospel Service in the Diaconate according to the Spirit’s call and lead. The Fourth Dynamic contemplates the Resurrection and the living out of the graces of the retreat – often referred to as “finding God in all things”.

The Retreat in Everyday Life will be community-based (among the aspirants and their spouses if applicable; single aspirants will make other arrangements), scripturally-oriented, and both personally and apostolically-oriented in outlook. At the monthly weekend gathering, we will take time to process the spiritual direction and Christian decision-making/Ignatian discernment.


Deacon Kelley Culver


Alphonsus de Liguori, pray for us.