“Render service with enthusiasm, as to the Lord and not to men and women.” Ephesians 6:7
In the Church of the Brethren, deacon ministry is a vital and significant expression of our caregiving ministries to individuals and families. The 1997 Annual Conference statement, “Deacon Ministry in the Church of the Brethren,” states the vision for a deacon ministry in the church as follows:
“Deacons are called to be dedicated caregivers who use their spiritual gifts in a shared ministry of concern for the total well-being of God’s people. Deacons are to be Christ-like, welcoming, nurturing, reconciling, sensitive to the presence of God’s spirit in their lives and in the lives of others, witnessing for Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord within and beyond the Body of Christ, the church.”
Deacon training and consultation
Deacon training can take many forms:
- a retreat for your deacons, maybe even inviting neighboring congregations
- a day of workshops on a variety of topics
- training while people are already gathered at District Conference or other event.
For more information, email us at DiscipleshipMinistries@brethren.org, or call 800-323-8039, ext. 303.
- The New Deacon Manual
- Downloadable Deacon Emeritus certificate
- Essential Servants: Reflections on the Caring Ministries of Deacons, by Fred Swartz
- Essential Servants II: More Reflections on the Caring Ministries of Deacons, by Fred Swartz (includes combined index for Volumes I and II)
- Go to the Brethren Press store, and in the search box in the upper left corner enter the word ‘deacon’ for other documents.
Deacon Insights (below) offer brief inspiring thoughts on care-giving. These newsletters were written by Donna Kline, who served as Director of Denominational Deacon Ministry for the Church of the Brethren. Permission is granted to copy these posts.
End-of-life decision making
One of the most thoughtful things that can be done as a part of end-of-life planning is to provide notes for your memorial service or funeral. This example can be downloaded and modified to meet your congregation’s needs.
Click the book covers for more information or to order from Brethren Press.
Deacon Spirituality and Commitment
Offering Support During Grief and Loss
James E. Miller—How Can I Help?/What Will Help Me?Fort Wayne, IN: Willowgreen, 1994.
Wengerd, Sara—A Healing Grief: Walking with Your Friend Through Loss. Scottsdale, PA: Herald Press, 2002.