The ministry of a deacon is a lifelong journey of growth and each permanent deacon will need to participate in ongoing development after ordination.  This would be assisted by attendance at courses and seminars on particular pastoral ministries (e.g. chaplaincies in hospitals, nursing homes, prisons and schools etc.) and structured reflection upon pastoral experience.  Deacons will be encouraged to continue to engage in daily reading of Scripture, in regularly reading of theological and spiritual texts.

After ordination deacons should continue where possible to participate daily in Mass and Holy Communion, and regularly to receive the Sacrament of Penance and spiritual direction. They should make an annual retreat, in some years joining the annual Archdiocesan Clergy Retreat; in other years a particular retreat will be organised which is especially tailored to deacons and their wives. The latter retreats might address some issues of mutual concern for married deacons and their wives, such as the theology of marriage and the complexities of this double vocation.

Financial support

The Archdiocese of Sydney normally bears the reasonable costs of formation of its clergy, of ongoing formation and of an annual retreat.

Permanent deacons in the Archdiocese are self-supporting and non-stipendiary; it is expected that their current employment or retirement superannuation and pension will provide their living. Some deacons are employed as pastoral associates or in Church agencies or in state funded chaplaincies and are thus entitled to the remuneration associated with that ministry.

The deacons of the Archdiocese, and their wives and dependants, are reimbursed for the annual cost of healthcare insurance. They are also reimbursed a small amount each year for expenses associated with liturgical attire, library and subscriptions, travel and home office requirements, monthly spiritual direction and professional development.

Deacons are required to have in place a suitable superannuation arrangement and, if they are married, a life insurance policy.

With regard to the widows and dependent children of deceased deacons the bishops, clergy and laity of the Archdiocese will be solicitous for their well-being to ensure that they are never neglected and that their needs are provided for. In particular, they will do this by providing, if necessary, free access to systemic schooling for dependent children and priority in employment to a widow.