Let the canon of our holy God-bearing Fathers be confirmed in this particular also; that a presbyter be not ordained before he is thirty years of age, even if he be a very worthy man, but let him be kept back. For our Lord Jesus Christ was baptized and began to teach when he was thirty. In like manner let no deacon be ordained before he is twenty-five, nor a deaconess before she is forty.
A subdeacon must have completed his twenty-first year, a deacon his twenty-second, a priest his twenty-fourth, and a bishop his thirtieth. None of the inferior clergy can hold a simple benefice before he has begun his fourteenth year. Ecclesiastical dignities, such as Cathedral canonries, cannot be conferred on any who have not finished the twenty-second year. A benefice to which is attached a cure of souls can be given only to one who is over twenty-four, and a diocese only to one who has completed his thirtieth year. (Vide Ferraris, Bibliotheca Prompta.)
In the Anglican Communion the ages are, in England, for a bishop “fully thirty years of age,” for a priest twenty-four, and for a deacon twenty-three: 361 and in the United States, for a bishop thirty years of age, for a priest twenty-four, and for a deacon twenty-one.
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