Called to be a bridge between the Church and the world, Deacons are ordained to a separate, distinct and equal order of ministry. They serve under the direct authority of the Bishop and are assigned to parishes by the Bishop. Liturgical responsibilities include: proclaiming the Gospel, helping create prayers of the people, preparing the Table, and proclaiming the dismissal.
The charge to Deacons during ordination reflects their call to help congregations remember our shared baptismal covenant to serve others and Christ.
God now calls you to a special ministry of servanthood directly under your bishop. In the name of Jesus Christ, you are to serve all people, particularly the poor, the weak, the sick, and the lonely. As a deacon in the Church, you are to study the Holy Scriptures, to seek nourishment from them, and to model your life upon them. You are to make Christ and his redemptive love known, by word and example, to those among whom you live, and work, and worship. You are to interpret to the Church the needs, concerns, and hopes of the world. You are to assist the bishop and priests in public worship and in the ministration of God’s Word and Sacraments, and you are to carry out other duties assigned to you from time to time. At all times, your life and teaching are to show Christ’s people that in serving the helpless they are serving Christ himself. (BCP, p. 543)
- Manual for the Diaconate in the Diocese of Maryland [PDF]
- Association for Episcopal Deacons is a membership organization committed to increasing awareness, participation, and involvement in the diaconal ministry
- Read: Engaging the Diakonia of All Believers [PDF]
The Venerable Jane O’Leary