Dear People of God here in the Diocese of St. Paul, Alberta, I wish to address this Pastoral Letter to you as I am restoring the Permanent Diaconate in our midst after much consultation, reflection, study and prayer. Hopefully this Pastoral Letter will give you greater insight and better understanding of this reality of faith that is also a gift to the Church and an incredible opportunity for the life of our diocese.  May the Spirit who speaks to the Churches (Rev. 2,7) guide all our steps.  This letter begins with a very brief history and rationale for the restoration of the permanent diaconate and goes on to answer some concerns and fears that are commonly expressed regarding it.  The letter then ends with a summary of the blessings I believe our Church will receive through the ministry of permanent deacons.  I hope you will take the time to prayerfully read it.