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Is a sacrament that is available only to men who are being ordained as deaconspriests, or bishops. As with Baptism and Confirmation, the sacrament is said to convey a special indelible “character” on the soul of the recipient. During the rite, which typically occurs during a special Sunday mass, a prayer and blessing is offered as a bishop lays his hands on the head of the man being ordained. In the case of the ordination of priests and bishops, this act confers the sacramental power to ordain (for bishops), baptize, confirm, witness marriages, absolve sins, and consecrate the Eucharist. Deacons can baptize, witness marriages, preach, and assist during the mass, but they cannot consecrate the Eucharist or hear confessions. With the exception of married deacons, an order restored by the Second Vatican Council, all ordained men are to be celibate.


The Vocation Office of the Diocese of Nashville offers many services such as recruitment for the priesthood, information on communities of religious life, diaconate, secular institutes, lay ministry, and volunteer ministry programs.

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