The Ministry of the Deacons

The ministry of Deacons in the Diocese of Northern California is a ministry of servant leadership inspiring, empowering and enabling the people of the Church (within and beyond the Congregation) to realize their own ministries in the world. Deacons are to be an “example” and it is from the honesty of that example that Deacons lead others to fulfill their baptismal vows. It is not just what Deacons say or do that inspires—it is their authentic living of the Baptismal Covenant.

In each congregation, the Deacon and Rector/Vicar will discuss and agree upon goals, areas of responsibility, and extent of participation most appropriate to the Deacon’s skills and availability, as well as the needs of the community where they are assigned. As leaders of outreach ministries, the Deacons should build relationships within the life of their ministry assignment.

The commitment of a Deacon is, first and foremost, to lead transformational social ministries in their assigned communities. Deacons may assist in liturgical ministry as specified in the rubrics of the Book of Common Prayer.

Other Ministry activities may include: (This list is neither exhaustive nor restrictive)

· Preach the diaconal message of Christ
· Inspire others to fulfill their Baptismal Covenant
· Empower others to do God’s work here on earth
· Enable others to access resources necessary for God’s work
· Raise up and support lay outreach ministers
· Support Outreach Committees
· Exemplify outreach in personal ministry
· Assist in gathering data on outreach alternatives
· Mentor follow-up groups to hands-on outreach
· Lead/facilitate participation in community programs
· Train and supervise Eucharistic Ministers and Visitors
· Teach and enable Christian Education
· Take Communion to the hospitalized and homebound
· Enable Bible study programs
· Train Acolytes
· Prepare worship leaders and lectors
· Write a column for the congregation’s newsletter/website.
· Administer Healing in accordance with BCP Pg. 456
· Conduct the service of burial of the dead
· Conduct the service of Holy Baptism
· Perform duties appointed by the Proper Liturgies for Special Days (Ash Wednesday, Palm Sunday, Maundy Thursday, Good Friday, Easter Vigil) , and
· Perform other functions specific to the Bishop and the individual Congregation, but will not include Public Eucharist with pre-consecrated elements (Deacon’s mass).

CLICK HERE to download the complete Handbook for Deacons (PDF).

© 2013 The Episcopal Diocese of Northern California.

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