This is a list of FAQs regarding deacons and the Deacon Ministry of RBC. If you have a question that is not addressed here, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
What is a deacon?
Briefly, a deacon is one who serves others in the love of Christ. The English words deacon, servant, and minister are all synonyms for the original Greek word diakonos. This word is used in a general sense for one who personally serves others, the gospel, or God. But where diakonos has been translated deacon in English, it usually refers to a unique type of servant who meets specific biblical qualifications, is examined, and then appointed to an official public position with prescribed duties given by the church elders.
What is the purpose of RBC’s Deacon Ministry?
Today’s culture presents its own unique problems and challenges in fulfilling all of the responsibilities and duties articulated by Jesus and scripture for His church to carry out. As a way of responding to these challenges and caring for the church, the elders of Reston Bible Church implemented the Deacon Ministry. This ministry is purposed for the task of providing mercy and material care to those in need within the congregation of RBC, with special emphasis to widows and widowers.
What are the responsibilities of deacons?
Deacons exist as representative servants of the congregation to the congregation. They are appointed to carry out works of mercy, and where practical, to meet material needs within the body as they arise. The responsibilities of deacons at Reston Bible Church will be in two areas:
- To direct financial resources and coordinate assistance by others in meeting the material needs of the saints at Reston Bible Church.
- To extend love and care for widows and widowers.
Deacons will be an extension of our love and care for widows and widowers and a channel to direct our generosity to those with financial/material needs within our congregation.
Meeting these two areas of responsibilities is a spiritual work and requires spiritual maturity in line with the qualifications given in scripture. While RBC will provide basic administrative guidance and advice on interacting with others, deacons are to walk in the Spirit, listening to and following His guidance to apply scripture and exercise love with each person or couple they serve.
What qualifications are required to become a deacon?
The general qualification of a deacon would be that they are “…of good reputation, filled with the Spirit and wisdom…” (Acts 6:3). We believe there are also specific qualifications for deacons, outlined here. We also ask that RBC deacons be able to uphold the doctrinal beliefs of our church with a clear conscience.
How does someone become a deacon at RBC?
Deacons are nominated by the congregation and then examined & appointed by the RBC elders.
If you would like to prayerfully nominate someone, you can learn more about the process and fill out an online deacon nomination form here. Nominees should meet the qualifications, and you should notify anyone before you nominate them.
Once nominated, deacon candidates must complete an online application form. After the application is reviewed, the deacon candidate will be contacted with further details.
The elders will select candidates to present to the congregation for input regarding their call to this ministry. Based on the input they receive, the elders will appoint selected candidates to the position of deacon.
Can women serve as deacons?
While there is often confusion regarding the role of women in ministry positions, Scripture neither explicitly permits nor prohibits women from serving as deacons in the church. While we do hold the position that elder/pastor roles are open only to qualified men, we believe that the office of deacon is open both to qualified men and women.
The word deacon literally means servant, and a number of the tasks related to the function of a local church are entrusted to these deacon leaders (Acts 6:1-2; Romans 16:1-2). Thus, we recognize that a leadership role is implied in the office of deacon. However, given that the intended role of women serving in a deacon ministry at RBC will involve no exercise of spiritual authority over men or teaching men, we see no biblical prohibition to women serving as part of this ministry.
If you would like more information, you can click here to view RBC’s position paper regarding women serving as deacons.
What is the term of commitment to serve as a deacon?
Ideally, we desire those who initially join this ministry to commit to one to two years. At the end of that initial commitment, deacons may discern before the Lord their gifting, desire and availability to continue serving in that capacity. A person may discover while serving in this capacity that it is exactly where and how God wants them to minister in the body of Christ. Likewise, they may discover that God wants them to minister elsewhere.
I’ve been nominated to serve as a deacon. What happens next?
If you have accepted a nomination to be a deacon, please look over our church’s beliefs. We will send you a link to an online application form that has some basic preliminary questions and will ask for two references. Once you have submitted this form, we will contact you with further details.
How does this ministry fit in with other ministries at RBC?
The Deacon Ministry is intended to enhance our overall care for those in the body at RBC. We have many ministries that provide care to the RBC body (Shepherd Groups, Meals Ministry, Helping Hands, counseling, etc.) The Deacon Ministry is one of several ministries in our network of care.
Will the deacons only help those who attend RBC?
The purpose of the deacon ministry is to care for the needs of those who regularly attend our church. We do have other ministries that help meet the needs of those who do not attend RBC, but the Deacons Ministry is specifically established to help meet the needs of those who already attend RBC on a regular basis.
If I have a financial/material need, or know someone in RBC who does, whom should I contact for help?
Please contact the deacons at email@example.com.
Do I have to be married to serve as a deacon?
No. Being married is not a requirement to serve as a deacon.
I have not been nominated, but would like to volunteer to be a deacon. Is that okay?
Absolutely. Please send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org to let us know and we’ll walk you through the application process.