Minimum Priest Age

Hi everyone,
I have heard before about the minimum age for the priest being 30, because Christ started his ministry at 30. Is that rule true?
Also, are there any another minimum ages for any rank in the church, and any sources would be greatly appreciated, especially those from church canons.


  • No. It's on a personal basis. Most of them ,especially here in the West, are in their 30's or 40's when they are chosen to join the Priesthood. The only formal rule I know of -- that is enforced anyway -- is that they must be a Deacon for at minimum of five years, which is the same to become a Full Deacon, before becoming a Priest.

    I don't believe we have an educational requirement. Although, a non-Monk Priest would most likely have a bachelor's level education with some schooling in Theology. That'll probably change in the next decade or so.

    When my Abouna told me he wanted me to take over for him, I was 33 and had an Associate's degree. I finished my Bachelor's and he helped me get into a Master's program at the Holy Sophia University, which is Coptic. I'm 37 now and he told me probably another two years. A lot of it has to do with if the person is ready.

    I did read some books about the Rankings and formal canons. I'm sure others will give you that information in more detail than I can at this time.
  • I’ve definitely heard of the age limit being around the ballpark of 35, though some exceptions are granted for those who are younger, primarily in accordance with the needs of service.
  • There are "guidelines" for the ordination of presbyters and all the clergy ranks actually. But, a bishop can always make exceptions. 
Sign In or Register to comment.