The Communion welcomes interest and invites applications from mature men interested in discerning a vocation to the religious life, permanent/transitional sub-diaconate, diaconate or priesthood or women discerning a vocation to the religious or consecrated life, or active apostolic life.
The minimum canonical age for ordination is twenty-four (24) there is no upper age limit. All applicants must be in good health mentally and able physically to exercise a ministry. Provinces do not offer stipendiary positions, all clergy are “non-stipendiary” i.e. they are financially self-sufficient and are either (self/) employed, retired or members of religious institutes (shared economy), unless Parishes are able to support their ministers themselves. Expenses are sometimes covered by congregations, but applicants should be aware that no accommodation or salary will be provided by the Church to them.
Clergy are not required to be celibate, married and single men alike are welcome to apply. In accordance with contemporary Orthodox praxis, married men may be ordained to all the Major Orders except the episcopate; but clergy may not marry post-ordination to the subdiaconate. All clergy are required to be chaste i.e. faithful to their partner, or modest in the development of their personal relationships. Celibacy remains an option for clergy i.e. to remain single and chaste, and many of our clergy live such a consecrated life.
Member Provinces will only ordain men into the Sacred Ministry who have an existing ministry, one in detailed concept or for a religious institute. The Communion will not ordain for other denominations and will not re-ordain or sub-conditionally ordain existing ministers without Incardination, if such action is deemed necessary or desirable.
After a process of discernment an applicant may become a “seminarian” and be enrolled on the Seminarian Formation Programme, this is the same whether for permanent sub/diaconate or priesthood. A minimum of three/four years before ordination to the diaconate may normally be expected, and a further six months to a year before priesting. Previous ministerial experience and academic qualifications relevant to theology may be taken into consideration though this is at the discretion of the Formation Rector. All costs of tuition and course materials are to be borne by the student (though some assistance can be provided for the un-waged or those on low income).