Ministry of Love and Justice

Ministry of Love and Justice

 From its beginning, and particularly during the first centuries, the diaconate has been primarily a ministry of love and justice.  The early metaphorical description of the deacon as “the eyes and ears, the mouth, heart, and soul of the bishop” referred to the duty of the deacon to identify the needy, to report their needs to the bishop and the Church, and to direct the Church’s loving service to them. 
As the diaconate has developed in the United States it is hard to find a single category of needy people in Church and society who are not being served by deacons: the homeless, the ill, prisoners, refugees, the rural poor, street people, victims of racial and ethnic discrimination, the aged, the bereaved, battered women, the blind, the deaf, the divorced, drug addicts, the dying, the handicapped, abused children, etc.  Deacons are ministering to these people, in the name of the church, and representing the care of Jesus Christ the Servant.
Through the grace of ordination, the deacon is to inspire, promote, and help coordinate the service that the whole Church must undertake in imitation of Christ.  He has a special responsibility to identify to the Church those who are in need.  Among such people the deacon is to speak about Christ and to offer them the Church’s varied assistance.  But in the Church, he is also to speak about the needy, to articulate their needs, and to inspire and mobilize the whole community’s response.  He thus becomes the link through which the Church reaches out to the needy and the needy challenge the church.
For more information contact the Office of the Diaconate at (856) 583-2858 or email Deacon Michael J. Carter at michael.carter@camdendiocese.org