The Priesthood in the Diocese of New Jersey:
Priestly Formation Guidelines
Members of the Episcopal Church who are entering the process of discernment for priestly ministry are strongly advised not to pursue a course of seminary study prior to meeting with Bishop Stokes and the Committee on Priesthood. Since priestly formation takes place primarily within the seminary context, such studies are to be undertaken only under the guidance of Bishop Stokes and the Committee on Priesthood.
Clinical Pastoral Education
Completion of a Clinical Pastoral Education unit of 400 hours is required by the Diocese before the candidacy interview.
Postulants will be interviewed for candidacy by the Committee on Priesthood, Bishop, and the Standing Committee (if recommended by the Bishop) toward the end of their Middler (2nd) Year in Seminary.
General Ordination Examination
The General Ordination Examination (GOE) is taken in January of senior year. GOE reports, evaluations, and further work recommendations are assigned to be completed before ordination. Seminary graduation with certificate showing scholastic record and personal qualifications for priesthood are required, as are satisfactory GOE reports and evaluations.
Life-changing Events and Ordination
Anyone in the process leading to ordination who experiences a serious and significant life change may be put on hold for a period of time as determined by the bishop. For example, the postulancy or candidacy period may be extended until the necessary personal stability is regained.
This is in no way intended to be punitive, but is for the well being of the person and those in his or her care. Examples of life-changing events are divorce, sudden death of a loved one, and so on.