[From Bishop Paul]
In the never-ending quest to make straight and smooth that which seems to defy such efforts, and **particularly** to avoid people experiencing disappointment down the road, there are some changes in the order, but not content, in the process.
After input from Canon Teter and some commission
members, and several months' discussion with a number of you, I am
adjusting the "front end" of the pre-postulancy part of the ordination
process, the part about what needs to happen before one can have the
official first meeting with the bishop to launch the formal process.
(This is the part before the COM's responsibilities kick in.)
Before an initial visit to the bishop, there should be in the bishop's possession:
-a letter from the applicant's parish priest stating why s/he supports this person in the process; if there is no priest in the parish, a priest who knows the person well should write
-the completed application form (and spiritual autobiography) for the diaconate or priesthood
-the results of the background check (there is a fee)
If after an initial meeting, the bishop wanted to move ahead, there would be -the psychological exam (we sill split the fee with the applicant, and there may also need to be another, briefer, exam nearer to ordination.)
After the psychological results are in, a second meeting with the bishop would take place, after which a decision will be made about further exploration.
Then would follow the normal discernment and other meetings under the direction of the Commission and Standing Committee.
I hope that by doing things in this order, those issues which have sometimes come as surprises will be taken care of beforehand, and that the rest of the process may focus on formation and discernment.