Deacons and Diaconal Ministers

Deacons are ordained United Methodist clergy who lead the church in relating Christians to their ministries in the world through worship leadership, preaching, teaching, nurturing spiritual vitality and leading ministries of service, love, and justice. They may work primarily in congregations or they may work primarily in settings like hospitals, social-service agencies, mission agencies, schools, counseling centers, denominational agencies, and more. Learn more about how deacons serve and lead.

Diaconal ministers are United Methodist laypeople who lead in service ministries. The United Methodist Church no longer consecrates new diaconal ministers. However, many diaconal ministers are still in active service. If you are a diaconal minister, visit this section of the Board of Ordained Ministry Handbook for information on how you relate to the annual conference.

If you feel called by God to be a layperson in a ministry of love and justice, check out the office of home missioners & deaconesses.

Watch this video to get an overview of the ministry of deacons in The United Methodist Church.

Upcoming Events

BOM Mid-Quadrennium Training (includes Gathering of the Chairs of the Orders), August 12-15, 2014. Theme: Excellence in Ministry. Registration is now open. Boards of Ordained Ministry should register all participants at the same time. Register here.

Provisional Deacon Formation Event, Oct. 27-29, 2014, Columbus, Ohio. While this is aimed for provisional members, candidates on the deacon track are also welcome.    Download registration flyer here.

Deacon Dialogue, April 16-18, 2015, Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary, Evanston, Ill. Includes a deacon candidacy formation workshop.

Joaquin Garcia Scholarship Fund

Help future deacons obtain the education they need: join deacons in giving to the Joaquin Garcia Graduate Scholarship Fund. Named after Joaquin Garcia, a deacon who led the General Board of Higher Education and Ministry's Section on Deacons and Diaconal Ministry until 2003, the scholarship will assist students enrolled full-time in graduate work toward deacon's orders. Donations would make a great gift in honor of retiring or newly ordained deacons. Invite your order to make a group gift.

Write checks to GBHEM Joaquin Garcia Scholarship Fund and mail to GBHEM, PO Box 340007, Nashville, TN 37203-0007.

Ordination and Commissioning Ordinal

Download the ordination and commissioning ordinal - with updates (including those related to those entering the diaconate) from 2012 General Conference.

Need More Information?

Connect with us via email or phone for any questions or concerns you might have. A full listing of staff is also available.

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Deacons Twitter

@UMCDeacons