From 2020 we will be exploring the diaconate. This marks an intentional period of investigation and promotion which we hope will recognise and encourage the diverse ministry of deacons.
John Collins describes deacons as "heralds of Christ's kingdom". This phrase will underpin our celebration of the diaconate. A herald is an envoy or messenger, and one of the traditional roles of a deacon is the distribution of communion (in and beyond the church). Therefore, we have developed a logo which seeks to capture that emphasis on communication (both the proclamation of the Good News of Jesus Christ and the sharing of the sacrament).
Our first step will be to send a survey out to our deacons and invite them into a discussion - they are after all the experts.
So, please pray for our deacons and their ministry. Pray also that God calls people to this critical office in our Diocese.
- Deacons Aotearoa website
- Deacon by design: The ups and downs of an Anglican deacon by Church of England deacon Gill Kimber;
- Remain in Me: Holy Orders, Prayer, and Ministry by Roman Catholic deacon James Keating; and
- Women: Icons of Christ by Phyllis Zagano.
I am pleased to attach an invitation from Deacon Ted Dodd, President of DOTAC (Diakonia of the Americas and the Caribbean), regional affiliate of the Diakonia World Federation.
The invitation is to a series of five one-hour virtual seminars on Mondays in May. These will be given by deacons from several Church traditions, including myself as the Anglican contributor. There is no charge for the seminars. DOTAC welcomes your participation. You can register by emailing Ted Dodd at email@example.com You’ll receive a Zoom link closer to the time of the event.
All of us are no doubt coping in our own ways with the world-wide pandemic situation. For my part, I am adapting to the challenges of being deacon in virtual online worship!
With very best wishes in this Easter season,
(Deacon Canon) Michael Jackson
Deacons' Training Days 2022
All events are held on Saturdays from 10-3pm. Morning tea and lunch are provided. Registration is critical to ensure appropriate hospitality is available.
- March (tbc): Taranaki Cathedral of St Mary - End of Life Choice
- March (tbc): Waikato Cathedral of St Peter - End of Life Choice
End of Life Choice
"God give me courage to strive for justice and peace among all people."
Indicative Content and Timeframe
We will meet from 10-2 in each centre with an emphasis on fellowship, education, and resource sharing. All food is provided.
- 10.00 Morning Tea and Welcome
- 10.30 Prayers
- 11.15 Session One
- 12.15 Lunch
- 12.45 Session Two
- 1.45 Distribution of practical resources
- 2.00 Depart
VII REGULATIONS FOR THE EFFECTIVE MINISTRY OF DEACONS WITHIN THE DIOCESE OF WAIKATO
1. The nature of the Ministry of Deacons set out in "The New Zealand Prayer Book" is affirmed. Deacons in the Church of God serve in the name of Christ, and so remind the whole Church that serving others is essential to all ministry. They have a special responsibility to ensure that those in need are cared for with Christlike compassion and humility. When called upon to do so, they may baptise, preach and give instruction in the faith. When people are gathered for worship, Deacons are authorised to read the Holy Scripture, lead the prayers, and distribute the bread and wine of Holy Communion".
2. The Diaconate is an ordained order within the Church with inherent mana and power. Nevertheless it is primarily to focus and enable the outward facing servanthood ministry by the Baptised to the wider community.Therefore:
- 2.1 Deacons are to be seen and involved within the Parishes as trainers and encouragers of the ministry of the Baptised towards the wider community.
- 2.2 Deacons are encouraged to discover ways of identifying with those who are powerless within society.
- 2.3 Deacons are to spend significant percentage of their active ministry time "caring for those in need".
- 2.4 Deacons are to be licensed to Parishes or the Bishop, for stipendiary or non-stipendiary ministry, only after the role of a Deacon within that Parish of the Diocese is explored and defined.
- 2.5 Deacons need to be affirmed by the Church in their specific ordained role. When a Deacon is approved as a candidate for Priesthood, training pertaining to Priesthood should not be allowed
- to intrude into candidate's authentic ministry as a Deacon.
- 2.6 Deacons are encouraged to use the title "Deacon".
- 2.7 Deacons are encouraged to develop a symbol of identity.
- 2.8 Deacons are to wear alb (cassock and surplice) and stole over left shoulder as their liturgical dress.
3. That when people consider ordained ministry within the Diocese of Waikato:
- 3.1 The Diaconate is to be promoted as an ordained order within the life of the Church, and not only as an assumed stepping stone to Priesthood.
- 3.2 Initial exploration will clarify whether it is the Diaconate or Priesthood that is sought and separate selection events will be held.
- 3.3 While people accepted specifically for ordination to the Diaconate are free to apply for Ordination to the Priesthood at some later time, it should be made clear at the outset that such application would not necessarily be approved, and if it were, a further training requirement would be involved.