Until now discerning a vocation to the Permanent Diaconate may well have been quite private and may not go any further. However if the call is strong and persistent then the next step can be to ask the Church to help in the discernment of this vocation.
Now you’re ready to take the first steps in making your discernment more “public”. You want to ask the Church to help you discern your particular vocation in order to “confirm” that it’s genuine. It’s good to speak to your parish priest or another priest you know well and can open up to and be honest with. These will help you in the first steps of discernment and, if they feel that the sorts of things you are saying might indicate a genuine call to the permanent diaconate, they will try to support you with your discernment. Ask them to help see the Lord’s hand at work in your life and to recognise the way in which He is guiding and calling.
If you are in Portsmouth Diocese, they might put you in touch with the Father Peter Hart, Permanent Diaconate Director for Portsmouth Diocese. He will be able to sit down and listen to you, to guide you and answer any questions you might have. He will be able to let you know about other discernment opportunities, such as retreats or days of reflection. He might also introduce you to a Spiritual Director.
You can contact Father Peter Hart, Permanent Diaconate Director, on 01420 82030 or click here to email.» click to see more/less