“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 your 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)

What is a Deacon?  Deacons are…

  • Icons of Jesus’ servanthood in the Church and in the world.
  • Ordained organizers, mobilizers, and ministers with community.
  • Interpreters to the Church of the needs, concerns, and hopes of the world.
  • Motivational influences on the Church to use their gifts to meet those needs.
  • “Minsters of the whole Church” who serve beyond one’s own home parish/community.
  • Deacons are generally non-stipendiary at the parish level; they often hold outside employment or may work in capacities beyond their diaconal roles in parish, diocesan, wider church, and/or community ministry. Deacons are supported in their ministry through the parishes and organizations through which they serve.

Pathways of Discernment and Formation for the Diaconate:

  • Complete all phases of the diocesan Discernment Process.
  • Nomination for Postulancy by one’s presenting priest and vestry.
  • Complete initial application for Postulancy, including all canonically required evaluations.
  • Spiritual direction and therapy during discernment and formation are strongly suggested.
  • Interview with the Committee on the Diaconate; the Bishop determines whether Postulancy is granted considering the recommendation of the Committee on the Diaconate.
  • Once Postulancy is granted, the formation pathway for Deacons occurs in local formation through the St. Phoebe School for Deacons.
  • Other steps in the process:
    • Internships during second year for practical formation.
    • Canonical exams mid-way through the program to evaluate academic formation.
    • Ember Day Letters keep postulants and candidates in regular communication with the Bishop.
    • Candidacy interviews with the Committee on the Diaconate, the Standing Committee, and Bishop occur about two-thirds of the way through the program to evaluate the formation plan and make any recommendations to strengthen remaining formation.