Task Force on Deacons - Names Announced!


Wondering who will lead us in thinking creatively about the office of deacon?   Wondering whom to share your best deacon story with?  Wondering whom to pray for as our denomination rethinks the deaconal office?   

Task Force members on the office of Deacon:   Dr. Mariano Avila,  Rev. Roy Berkenbosch,  Rev. Richard A. Jones,  Ms. Greta Luimes,  Mr. Andrew Ryskamp,  Ms. Bonnie Smith,   Ms. Lori Wiersma, and Mr. Terry Woodnorth

If you're like me, you've been a bit curious about who will be named to this task force to study the work of the deacon.   Just a bit!   It's a daunting assignment.  In a way, it's long overdue. The questions have been before us for decades and no one doubts the validity of taking a look at this office of deacon.  On the other hand, well, the questions aren't clearly defined. The task force will face a broad range of already existing practices - which will stimulate them, and also create some real-life tension.

What I like is that there's some healthy diversity on the team.  A wide variety of backgrounds and experiences in the CRC will make for vibrant brainstorming, exciting dialog, and healthy range of perspectives. My hope is that deacons in the CRC will share many, many stories with this task force. I hope that CRC councils correspond with this task force on a regular basis, sharing questions, ideas, experiences, triumphs, and frustrations.  I hope that this task force will engage in lively dialog with deacons in the CRC as they carry on their task.

They've got some time to work - they'll need to report back to the Board of Trustees in time for a report to be submitted to the synod of '13.  

I've offered the task force the use of this blog space and I've encouraged them to use the Deacons' forum to carry on a dialog with the deacons across North America.  I will commit myself to pray for them and the work they're assigned to do.  I invite deacons in all 1,000 CRCs to get into the dialog; let's do everything we can to make this task force a delightful assignment for its members.  Will you help? You can start with prayer; you can use the Deacons' Forum; you can respond when they ask for help; and you can talk to your fellow deacons and council members about this task force.  Let the deaconal revolution begin!

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Hi Karl,

I agree that there is healthy diversity on the task force team. I'm just a little suprised that Diaconal Ministries Canada - resourcing and encouraging deacons for over 50 years - has no staff representation on the "team"!


Community Builder

Surprising, yes, I agree.  I think I'm right in observing that there is also no one from the Communities First Association, which is CRWRC's partner organization for working with deacons in the US.    I suspect that choosing no one from either of these entities might be purposeful.  Let's see if anyone can shed light on this for us.   

 Hi Karl,

I agree with Henry Bosch and wonder too why  not someone from Diaconal Ministries Canada was invited to be part of the Tack Force on Deacons. Diaconal Ministries Canada grew from the inital efforts of the All Ontario Diaconal Conference and has offered and continues to turn over new leaves in spiritual and  positive leadership  promoting diaconal ministry. I sincerely hope that the taskforce will seek input from the present Diaconal Ministries Canada staff.

I pray the taskforce much wisdom as they address and deliberate the role and gifts of the deacons at the church and major assemblies.


I don't know the canidates. Is there anybody on there that is sick, disabled or poor? I think if want a fuller picture, someone  like that could balance out the predominate selection of healthy people. Being around crisis is different than experiencing it.