On Friday, October 1, I will be fully ordained as a deacon in the United Methodist Church. All of Kenilworth Union is invited to this online worship service which will be livestreamed at 6 p.m. on the Northern Illinois Conference of the United Methodist Church YouTube channel.
There are two clergy orders in the UMC, elders and deacons who share a call to word and service. Deacons have a particular call to ministries of justice and compassion, while elders are called to order and sacrament. I was commissioned (provisionally ordained) in 2019 and entered a period of residency. After a final examination in March 2021, I was approved by the Board of Ordained Ministry. On Friday the Bishop John Hopkins will ordain me to lifetime service and this Spirit-led, surprising, challenging, yet grace-filled ordination journey will be complete.
And in so many ways, my journey is still beginning, especially in my still-new role as Associate Minister for Discipleship here at Kenilworth Union Church. Leading Children and Family Ministry, Adult Education, and Communications are ways that I embody the ministry of the deacon when I say “yes” in answer to this question on Friday:
A deacon is called to share in Christ’s ministry of servanthood, to relate the life of the community to its service in the world, to lead others into Christian discipleship, to nurture disciples for witness and service, to lead in worship, to teach and proclaim God’s word, to assist elders and appointed local pastors at Holy Baptism and Holy Communion, to interpret to the church the world’s hurts and hopes, to serve all people, particularly the poor, the sick, and the oppressed, and to lead Christ’s people in ministries of compassion and justice, liberation and reconciliation, especially in the face of hardship and personal sacrifice. This is the rule of life and work of a deacon. Do you believe that God has called you to the life and work of a deacon?
I would be delighted to talk with anyone who wants to know more about my faith journey. Thank you all for our ministry together and your endless support. May God bless the days and years ahead.
In Christ’s Service,