The Permanent Deaconate should be seen within the context of expanded or shared ministry, a concept that recognises the ministry of the Church as proclaiming and living the Gospel of Jesus Christ. The decon, whose ordination represents a lifetime commitment of service, is also a minister whose lifestyle and family places him in a unique way in the midst of the community which he serves. Service is the crux of the deacon's ministry, the name deacon is derived from the Greek work for 'service', justice issues and advocacy for the poor are primary in a deacon's ministry. Further information is available from the Office of the Permanent Diaconate.
A Permanent Deacon is a man who:
Is called to be an Ordained Minister of the Church
Serves the bishop, priests and people of his parish and diocese through a variety of ministries: assisting at Eucharist, preaching, baptising, presiding at funerals, witnessing marriages, and providing pastoral care for the elderly, prisoners, the disadvantaged, or wherever the needs of the Church or people are greatest
Nourishes and fosters his relationship with Jesus Christ through prayer and service
May be married, or single and celibate. If married, is assisted by his wife in his ministry. (The majority of ‘permanent deacons’ are married).
Is usually assigned to a parish, and may be employed there, either full-time or part-time.
May continue to hold another position part-time to supplement his income.
A deacon assists and preaches at liturgical celebrations. He may baptize, preside at marriages and funerals, and minister in other ways.