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101 Questions & Answers on Deacons : Responses to 101 Questions... - William T. Ditewig

101 Questions & Answers on Deacons

Responses to 101 Questions...

Paperback

Published: 1st July 2004
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This timely book provides the general reader with a clear, succinct introduction to the diaconate and addresses the perplexing and commonly-asked questions and myths that have been raised about deacons, their sacramental identity, their functions, and their relationships. Although the position of deacon was commonplace in the early church, the order became a transitional one from the 6th century until Vatican II reinstated the post of "permanent" deacon in the late 1960s. Since then, the diaconate rapidly became the fastest growing of all church vocations. While many Catholics are aware of deacons, most have very little idea why the diaconate was renewed as a permanent order of ordained ministry or even why deacons exist! In addition, more than 90% of deacons are married, which adds to the confusion of Catholics who have only experienced a celibate clergy. Now they are presented with a predominantly married clergy involved in the leadership and service of the Church. This book answers such commonly asked questions as: Just who and what is a deacon? After all these centuries, what led the Council to restore the diaconate as a permanent order of ministry? What sort of training and formation do deacons receive? How does a deacon balance family, job, and ordained ministry? Can a deacon be pastor of a parish? Taken together, these questions explore the role of deacons in the contemporary church, the formation of deacons, what it is like to live as a deacon, and the role of deacons as ministers of the word, the liturgy, and as apostolic leaders in service.

Introduction : deacons in the contemporary churchp. 1
Deacons and the diaconatep. 9
Just how and what is a deacon anyway?p. 11
So are you saying that the deacon is a kind of priest?p. 11
Is being a deacon the same in all churches and denominations?p. 12
When I was younger, we only talked about priests (and bishops) as clergy : Are deacons mentioned in the Bible?p. 13
If deacons are mentioned in scripture and in the writings of the early church, why did they disappear for so long?p. 14
Who are some famous deacons through history?p. 16
In the early church, why were deacons often elected to become bishops?p. 18
What were "archdeacons" and why did bishops have them?p. 18
After all these centuries, what led the council to restore the diaconate as a permanent order of ministry?p. 19
Exactly how did the Second Vatican Council "renew" the diaconate?p. 20
What exactly does Vatican II say about deacons?p. 21
Paragraph #29 of The Dogmatic Constitution on the Church says that "strengthened by sacramental grace, [deacons] are at the service of the people of God in the ministry of the liturgy, the word, and charity, in communion with the bishops and his priests" : what does this mean?p. 22
I thought that the Second Vatican Council promoted lay ministry : if that's the case, why is the church promoting clerical forms of ministry at the expense of lay persons who could do the job just as well?p. 23
If the council wanted to stress the permanent nature of the diaconate, why are seminarians still ordained deacons before they are ordained to the priesthood?p. 25
So deacons and priests are ordained by bishops : Who ordains bishops?p. 28
You just said that bishops are "ordained" : however, the word consecrated was also used in one of the quotes from Vatican II : are ordination and consecration the same thing?p. 30
Can deacons help with the shortage of priests?p. 32
The deacon in my parish works selling life insurance : if deacons are clergy, why do they still hold regular jobs?p. 33
Are you saying that, when all is said and done, most deacons are just part-time ministers?p. 33
The formation of deaconsp. 35
What sort of training and formation do deacons receive?p. 37
How does someone know if he had a vocation to be a deacon?p. 38
Are there special courses to take to become a deacon?p. 39
Do deacons all have college degrees in theology?p. 39
With this diversity in educational background, how does the bishop make sure that a person is well prepared for professional ministry as a deacon?p. 40
I always thought that members of the Catholic clergy has to be celibate : why can a married man be a deacon?p. 41
You mentioned that the bishop decides whom to ordain; however, does a person just volunteer to be a deacon?p. 42
Living life as a deaconp. 43
How does a deacon balance family, job, and ordained ministry?p. 45
Given all of this responsibility, wouldn't it just be better to wait until retirement to become a deacon?p. 45
I understand that priests receive a salary for their ministry : do deacons get paid, or are they volunteers?p. 47
What happens if a deacon decides to leave active ministry?p. 48
Deacons often minister in the world, and so do lay persons; are they doing the same things?p. 49
The deacon is a member of the clergy, but he usually lives and works among the laity : how should a deacon relate to the laity?p. 50
I once heard a diocesan official say that our diocese wants to focus on developing priestly vocations and lay ministry, so we don't need deacons : is this comment accurate?p. 50
Can women be ordained as deacons?p. 51
I have heard that there were deaconesses in the ancient church : who were these women, and were women ever ordained as deacons?p. 52
Do deacons get transferred from parish to parish like priests?p. 53
A deacon in a neighboring parish was just elected a judge : I thought Catholic clergy weren't supposed to be involved in politics, so why was he able to do this?p. 54
Why do some deacons dress like lay persons, and others wear the white clerical collar that I normally see priests wearing?p. 55
What other clerical obligations does canon 288 address for permanent deacons?p. 57
People refer to bishops as "bishop" or "your excellency" : we call our own priest "father :" What do we call deacons?p. 59
The relationship of the deaconp. 61
I thought deacons worked for priests; what is a deacon's relationship to the bishop?p. 63
What does the bishop expect from the deacons?p. 64
I know the bishop is a priest, but is he a deacon, too?p. 65
In our diocese, a couple of our deacons are in charge of diocesan offices : don't these offices have to be held by priests?p. 66
What are "faculties," and why does a bishop give them to deacons?p. 66
Since the bishop has priests, why does he need deacons?p. 67
Why do some bishops have deacons and others do not?p. 67
The bishop has a special sacramental relationship with his priests and a similar sacramental relationship with his deacons : so, what is the deacon's relationship with priests?p. 68
If the deacon and the pastor can't get along, can the pastor "fire" the deacon?p. 68
If bishops are deacons, are priests deacons, too?p. 69
How do deacons and priests collaborate?p. 69
Are deacons "lower" on the hierarchical ladder than priests?p. 70
Are priests "full-time" ministers and deacons "part-time" ministers?p. 70
Can a deacon be the pastor of a parish?p. 71
What is the relationship between deacons and priests assigned to a parish, other than the pastor?p. 72
How many permanent deacons are married?p. 72
Are there celibate deacons?p. 72
If the wife of a deacon dies, may the deacon get married again?p. 73
What is expected of a deacon's wife?p. 73
Will a married deacon have time for much ministry?p. 74
If a married man is ordained a deacon, do he and his wife have to refrain from sexual activity after his ordination?p. 75
If the wife of a deacon dies, should the deacon become a priest?p. 76
What happens if a deacon and his wife get divorced? : if that marriage is later annulled, may the deacon marry again?p. 76
If the family involved in a candidate's formation for ordination as a deacon?p. 77
The deacon as minister of the wordp. 79
What exactly is the ministry of the word, and what is the deacon's role in it?p. 81
Why does the deacon proclaim the gospel at mass, and not the priest?p. 81
What is the role of the deacon in preaching?p. 82
Why do some deacons never preach at mass?p. 82
I am used to priests and bishops being teachers in the church; however, are we now to consider deacons also as "official" teachers in the church?p. 83
If a priest is going to give the homily at mass, shouldn't he also proclaim the gospel at the mass instead of the deacon?p. 83
What is the deacon's role in evangelization?p. 85
Deacons as ministers of the liturgyp. 87
Since deacons are supposed to focus on service, why are they involved in liturgical ministries anyway?p. 89
What sacraments do deacons celebrate?p. 90
Are there differences between when a priest baptizes and when a deacon baptizes?p. 91
Since deacons may baptize, may they also officiate at the sacrament of confirmation?p. 91
If there is no priest present, may a deacon preside at the eucharist?p. 91
Do deacons "here confessions"?p. 91
Why don't deacons celebrate the sacrament of the anointing of the sick?p. 92
Since deacons don't preside at mass, does that mean deacons can only witness marriages outside of mass?p. 93
Can deacons ordain other deacons?p. 93
A friend of mine said that the deacon in here parish often presides at funerals, and last night I saw a deacon conducting a wake service : are deacons supposed to do these things?p. 94
Do deacons lead other kinds of prayer services?p. 94
I've heard that deacons have a responsibility to "pray daily the liturgy of the hours :" what is this liturgy of the hours, and how does it involve deacons?p. 94
Can deacons bless people and things?p. 95
I have heard that the deacon has special liturgical functions during holy week : what is holy week, and how does the deacon function during this special time?p. 95
What liturgical vestments do deacons wear, and what is their significance?p. 97
Deacons as apostolic leaders in servicep. 99
What does it mean to describe deacons as "apostolic leaders in service"?p. 101
What did Pope Paul VI mean when he referred to deacons as a "driving force of the church's service"?p. 102
If deacons are "servants," how can they be leaders?p. 102
Are deacons supposed to do more about charity and justice than simply serve in a variety of charitable works?p. 103
Aren't all Christians supposed to serve the needs of others?p. 103
How do deacons exercise this ministry?p. 103
Where do deacons exercise this ministry?p. 103
Are deacons parish ministers or diocesan ministers?p. 104
If a deacon grew up in one parish, why would the bishop send him to another parish?p. 105
Can a parish have more than one deacon?p. 105
Can a deacon serve in more than one parish?p. 106
Our deacon serves as a chaplain at the county jail : do all deacons serve in assignments outside a parish, and can they be called "chaplains"?p. 106
What diocesan offices are open to deacons?p. 107
Do deacons serve in national and international roles of service?p. 107
Final reflectionp. 109
A parishioner recently said she hoped that all the problems of the church would soon be solved, and there would no longer be any need for the permanent diaconate since there would be enough priests and lay persons to handle everything : when will we know we have enough deacons?p. 111
Table of Contents provided by Blackwell. All Rights Reserved.

ISBN: 9780809142651
ISBN-10: 0809142651
Series: Responses to 101 Questions...
Audience: General
Format: Paperback
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 112
Published: 1st July 2004
Publisher: Paulist Press International,U.S.
Country of Publication: US
Dimensions (cm): 20.5 x 13.34  x 1.27
Weight (kg): 0.18