The Role of a Deacon:
The office of deacon is described in the New Testament (1 Tim 3:8-13). The call of the office of deacon includes more than caring for the business of the church. Deacons are engaged in an important part of the Lord’s work. Stephen, the first Christian martyr, and Phillip, afterward called “the evangelist” were among the first seven deacons chosen in the Christian church (Act 6:5, 6; 8:5-26; 21:8). The appointment of the seven to take the oversight of special lines of work, proved a great blessing to the church.
Description: Deacons are the backbone of the church’s physical and emotional support. the deacon’s responsibilities are:
- Minor repairs to the church facility
- Coordination of all maintenance and cleaning duties
- Assist with transportation needs
- Assist with the collection of offerings
- Serve on the church board (as designated)
- Visitation of shut-in
- Assist with Communion Service and Ordinance of Humility
- Assist with special meals for the bereaved
- Assist with request from the poor and homeless
- Prepare the baptismal pool for baptism
The Role of a Deaconess
Deaconesses were included in the official staff of the early Christian churches. When writing to the Romans, Paul referred to one godly woman in this way. “I commend to you our sister Phoebe, a servant of the church in Cenchrea. I ask you to receive her in the Lord in a way worthy of the saints and to give her any help she may need from you, for she has been a great help to many people, including me.” —Romans 6:1,2.
* Here the word “servant” is also rendered “deaconess.”
The role of the deaconess can be described as follows:
- Help with the poor
- Be positive role models (in attitude in lifestyle)
- Provide hospitality
- Lend emotional support
- Counsel teenagers (issues such as teen pregnancy)
- Build relationships with new members
- Assist with baptism of female candidates
- Call shut-ins and sick members
- Assist with Communion preparation
- Visit with, and prepare food for bereaved families
Church Elder – According to Acts 20:28, elders are called, or appointed by the Holy Spirit. When a local church elects and ordains an elder they are simply recognizing and confirming the Spirit’s call.
Along with church pastors, elders have a tremendous responsibility to their congregations. To elders, Paul says, “Keep watch over yourselves and all the flock of which the Holy Spirit has made you overseers. Be shepherds of the church of God, which he bought with his own blood.”—Acts 20:28 (NIV).
Scripture describes an elder as someone who has:
- Knowledge, experience, and wisdom that church members can draw from for guidance and spiritual support (Acts 15:2, 6; 16:4).
- The ability and will to shepherd and care for the body of believers (Acts 20:28-31; Hebrews 13:17).
- A willingness and ability to teach and instruct others in spiritual matters (I Timothy 3:2; Hebrews 13:7; I Timothy 5:17; Acts 20:30).
- The ability and will to equip and teach members how to share their Christian faith (Ephesians 4:11-13).
- A positive example and influence among the church body and community (I Peter 5:3; Hebrews 13:7).