I'm 16 and want to be a deacon; can you tell me more about it?
Dear Fr Anthony,
I'm a 16 year old boy who's very Catholic and who wants to become a deacon. My biggest dream, in fact, is to have a family but also to bring the words of the Lord to the people in today's society. Here in the US deacons say the homily sometimes, but in an Italian book I bought it doesn't talk about that. Can deacons say homilies? Which masses do they have to be present to?
A few things might help you in your thoughts. Usually to become a deacon a man has to have already brought up his family, so it is not a calling that you will be able to follow through on very soon. However, there are many ways to bring the Lord's words to people in today's society without necessarily being a deacon (as a catechist, apologist, parish leader, youth minister, writer, counselor, etc) and so you could prepare for these and begin doing them much sooner than you could plan on being a deacon. Of course they do not include preaching the homily, which the deacon is allowed to do. It is natural that you would dearly desire to have a family, especially if you come from a good family yourself, but I would invite you to consider if Christ might not be asking you to give up even that to be more like him and do his work. Consider the many graces he has given you, look at the needs that there are around you, see the thirst people have for truth and meaning, the need they have for forgiveness and grace, and maybe you will discover Christ there, inviting you. It would be an enormous grace for you to receive. Be sure of my prayers.