May 2, 2016 0 comments
On Sunday we installed (for the very first time) people into the office of "deacon". If you missed it, here's a recap of what, why, and who...
1. What is a Deacon?
The word just means servant. Our English word “deacon” is a transliteration of the Greek word for “servant”. So we have defined the office of deacon as a “lead servant” who organizes and administrates ministry. They are “ministry facilitators”, you might say!
2. Why install Deacons here?
We want to draw straighter lines between our ministry structure and the Bible’s ministry structure, e.g., “overseers (or elders) and deacons”, Phil. 1.1. We believe that’s a good thing to be able to look at the bible’s ministry structure and see the same thing here: elders & deacons.
We believe doing so will release more ministry to and from this body - to God’s glory! And we believe our body will be better served as deacons enable the elders to focus more effectively on the elders’ leading and shepherding tasks.
3. Who can serve as a deacon?
The simple answer is: those who meet the qualifications for the office in 1st Timothy 3. But a crucial question is: can men and women serve as deacons?
The way the ESV reads, it looks like only men can be deacons: "Their wives (or “Women…”) likewise must be dignified, not slanderers, but sober-minded, faithful in all things." (1 Tim 3.11)
Here’s why we concluded that both men and women can serve in this office…
- the word translated “wives” could equally be translated “women”
- the “their” in “their wives” is not there in the Greek text
- the “likewise” in Paul’s usage signals a new group of people
- No authoritative teaching or leading responsibilities are in view for deacons; those are clearly delegated to male elders
- And a lady named Phoebe in Romans 16.1 is very probably a “deacon” of her church
These indicators point us toward a position that God’s Word allows for both men and women to serve in the office of deacon.
We believe God had a good and wise design in making us male and female, and in providing us differing callings in the church and in the home. But if Scripture allows for women to serve as deacons, then we want to too – and we are excited about doing so. We are excited to release the ministry of men and women of this church in every way that Scripture allows us to do so!
4. Who will be our deacons?
We invited people to apply, and we’ve recruited a bit too. Then we involved you, and you gave your overwhelming affirmation to this slate of deacons. So here they are – and what they’ll do…
Deacon of Sunday Administration: DAN ARTHUR
Dan will organize and administrate ministry related to our Sunday Service, including: set up / take down team, sound team, projection team, offering counting, ushering, and Lord’s Supper. (NOTE: he is not be replacing the ministry team leaders for those teams, but will be serving those ministry team leaders directly on behalf of the elders.)
Deacons of Community Connection: DANA CABRAL & MINDY COLTON
Dana and Mindy will organize and administrate ministry that includes: greeting, guest follow-up, information table, Sunday hospitality, Sunday aesthetics, new members’ class, and other contexts that incorporate guests. (NOTE: they are not replacing current ministry team leaders either.)
Deacon of Women’s Care: MINDY FENSKA
Mindy will organize ministry in the form of aiding the elders in caring for female members of this church, especially women in acute difficulty. One form would be through a counseling support role to the elders – coming alongside of us to help us care for ladies in crisis situations. Secondly, she can also help ladies with mentoring or counseling resources, and finding possible mentoring connections in the church.
Deacon of Musical Worship: SCOTT MOON
Scott will organize and administrate all aspects of the ministry of musical worship in our Sunday services. (Things he’s already been doing!) This includes the oversight of scheduling worship leaders and musicians, holding periodic auditions, and coordinating with the elders on musical matters for our Sunday services.
Deacon of Benevolence: DAVE POE
Dave will organize and administrate expressions of practical ministry and care within this body to include meeting financial needs. This deacon will help us meet financial needs within this body through clear policies and procedures.
Deacons of Children’s Ministry / Sunday Security: DAN & LESLIE WILSON
Dan and Leslie will organize and administrate all ministry to children during our Sunday services. (which they have already been doing!) Dan’s role would also include the formation of a Sunday security team to serve on Sunday mornings, especially for the protection of the children - given the open and public nature of our facility.
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