The Chapter of Deacons was formed in 2006 as a collegial body for the mutual support and learning of those called permanently to the distinctive life, work and ministry of a deacon in our Church.
The Diocese of Islands and Inlets embraced the renewal of the diaconate as a “full, equal, and distinct order of ministry” in 1991. Having a parish deacon would be as normative as having a parish priest. Deacons and priests would have unique, but complementary, roles in the leadership of the Church. Sadly however, and to this day, the Church’s most frequent interaction with deacons continues to be with those who are in transition to ordination as a priest, which they view as their primary calling. The Chapter of Deacons was formed to support those who, by contrast, see the diaconate as their primary calling.
Such deacons normally have an identifiable and exemplary ministry of service or advocacy “in the world.” This is where they spend most of their time, both before and after ordination. As such, they are often at home in places the Church does not easily go. This is what gives them their ability to interpret to the rest of the Church the “needs, concerns and hopes of the world,” and their passion for encouraging the Church to embrace the work of mending the world. When a parish asks to have a deacon anchored in its midst, it is declaring its commitment to God’s mission to the world outside its doors.
This is often uncomfortable work. The Chapter of Deacons meets regularly to equip and strengthen our deacon-leaders in assisting us all to “seek and serve Christ in all persons, loving our neighbour as ourself.”
Director of Deacons: Ansley Tucker
Ansley is the dean emerita of the diocese, and now serves part-time to advance and coordinate the ministry of deacons. Although a priest, she has championed the renewal of the diaconate since 1992, when she chaired a task force resulting in its restoration in the Diocese of Toronto. Ansley meets regularly with deacons, enquirers, and parish clergy wanting to know more about the role deacons can play in the renewal of the Church.