Overview: What is a Deacon?
The understanding of diaconal ministry set forth herein is grounded in four primary sources: the Holy Scriptures, The Book of Common Prayer (1979; hereafter “BCP”), the Constitution and Canons of the Episcopal Church, and the Constitution and Canons of the Diocese of Central Florida.
Each of these sources bears witness to diaconal ministry as service in the Church and in the world. As servant ministers, Deacons (and those who aspire to ordination to the Diaconate) strive to exemplify a spirit of service to others and a dedication to helping others enter into the ministry of Christian service.
Ordination to the diaconate is not done to recognize or validate existing ministries. Rather, it is a means of forming ministers of the Gospel called to model the servant ministry of Christ to all the baptized. Deacons are not ordained to do outreach ministry on behalf of the Church but to model servant ministry and to lead all members of the Church into servant ministry.