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Steps to Becoming a Priest, Brother or Deacon

It begins with Discernment…
Discernment is a time of discovery for an aspirant. We get to know you, while you get to know us. During this time we invite aspirants to spend time praying, celebrating Mass, and breaking bread with members of our community. You will visit the seminary we sponsor, stay at our formation houses, visit our parishes and local ministries. If we discern together that you are called to be a Salvatorian we will invite you to apply.

Come and See as part of this – do we need/want a brief note on this and its value for SDS and the discerner.

Steps to Formation
Our five-step formation program helps you grow in your Salvatorian identity while preparing to minister to God's people.Step 1:

The first step of formation is candidature, in which the individual is introduced to Salvatorian life. He lives in community, engages with others in formation and participates in part-time ministry. He attends formation classes and works closely with the director of candidates to discern readiness for entrance into novitiate.

Step 2: Novitiate
The novitiate stage of formation leads the novice more deeply into Salvatorian religious life, especially in the areas of prayer, liturgy, and part-time volunteer ministry. Novices live at the novitiate and take classes on Salvatorian life and identity. A major focus is to discern readiness to take the vows of poverty, chastity and obedience in the Society of the Divine Savior.

Step 3: Temporary Vows
Temporary vows are taken annually for at least three years while the new member prepares for ministry as a Salvatorian priest or brother. Seminarians participate in the four-year program of studies at Sacred Heart School of Theology in Hales Corners, Wisconsin. Brothers take classes geared toward their particular ministry, or, if already prepared, begin their professional ministry. Temporarily professed members also have opportunities to gain a deeper understanding of our international charism through overseas experiences. Both seminarians and brothers complete a year of supervised apostolic ministry before final vows.

Step 4: Final Vows
Upon completing the period of temporary vows, the new member takes final vows as a life-professed member of the Society of the Divine Savior. Those preparing for ordination are normally ordained a deacon at the beginning of their fourth year of seminary studies, with ordination to priesthood following completion of the master of divinity degree. The brother continues in the ministry he has discerned with the leadership of the Salvatorian community.

Step 5: Lifetime Formation
Salvatorian priests and brothers continue their formation throughout the rest of their lives. We’re committed to ongoing growth and reflection on the meaning of being a Salvatorian who proclaims Christ’s love to the world.