More Than Charity & Relief

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For many--and perhaps most--of us, if all we knew about deacons and what they do was from what we observed, we might think that the work of deacons was primarily limited to collecting and distributing offerings and perhaps providing emergency relief in various forms. And, from what I know and have observed over the years, it appears that there are still a fair number of congregations where deacons are either not expected or, for whatever reason, simply do not do much more than that.

The following description of deacons and the work to which they are called is from last year's Diakonia Remixed report to Synod. This description comes  from the recommendation made by the Task Force for revising the wording of the existing form for the ordination of elders and deacons. 

Deacons serve by leading and equipping the church to serve its members and the world in a rich diversity of ministries, awakening compassion, demonstrating mercy, seeking justice, and collaborating with God’s Spirit for the transformation of persons and communities. In imitation of Christ’s mercy deacons summon the church to help relieve victims of injustice; equip the church for the ministries reconciliation and peacemaking; seek opportunities for advocacy; and call God’s people to faithful stewardship of the gifts of creation. By this they show that Christians live by the Spirit of the kingdom, fervently desiring to give life the shape of things to come. Deacons are therefore called to identify and develop gifts in both the Church and community, assess needs, promote generous stewardship and offer wise and respectful care for the poor. By adding to all this words of encouragement and hope, deacons demonstrate in word and deed the care of the Lord himself.

How are we fulfilling or helping deacons fulfill and carry out these responsibilities? What would, has, or is helping deacons carry out these responsibilities?

The following link is to a devotion from Diaconal Ministries Canada on Ephesian 4:1-16 that I thought was relevant and helpful. Click here if you're interested in reading it.

This is your time to share your thoughts, ideas, and suggestions with others. Let the sharing begin!

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