According to scripture, some Christians are called to be deacons. The ministry of a deacon is one of sympathy, witness, and service after the example of Jesus Christ. Deacons are given the particular responsibility for building up and empowering the most vulnerable members of God’s people by ministering to those who are in need, to the sick, the friendless, and to any who may be in distress. In the Presbyterian Church, women and men are ordained into the office of a deacon, and the board which organizes and administers the work and ministry of the deacons is called The Diaconate. Click here for a list of Diaconate members.
The Care Ministry Program
First Presbyterian Church in Kingsport has determined specific responsibilities and developed a particular way of organizing the work and ministry of our deacons which we call our Care Ministry Program. All the members of our church are assigned to a small group, and a deacon oversees and facilitates the pastoral ministry of each group. According to the organizational plan, the purpose of our Diaconate is:
- To show Christian love and compassion by caring for our congregation.
- Establish an open and effective communication system among all members of the church.
- Create an environment where members will freely communicate with the deacon for their group, other group members, staff and officers.
- Ensure that ALL members are appropriately served by the church. Everyone feels that the church really cares about him or her.
- Ensure that ALL members are asked to appropriately serve Christ through the church. Be sure that every person is given specific opportunities and challenges to do God’s work.
- Give members of each group the opportunity to help in encouraging and caring for other members of their Group.
Care Ministry Dinners
Twice each year, our deacons organize a Care Ministry Dinner. The first dinner each year is on Maundy Thursday and the second dinner is usually the first or second Wednesday after Labor Day. Each deacon calls all the members of his/her group and encourages them to come to the dinner. At this catered meal, each Care Ministry Group sits at a table and enjoys fellowship with the other members of their group. A significantly large percentage of our congregation attends these meals, and it has become a valuable and much loved tradition in our church.