Friday, November 1, 2013

From Khanya: A mailing list for deacons

From a favored blog of mine Khanya, a post entitled Calling Orthodox Deacons.

For a while now I’ve been thinking that it would be good to communicate with other Orthodox deacons. Sometimes there are questions I want to ask, and sometimes there are ideas that I’d like to ask others about.

I checked to see if there was an online forum for Orthodox deacons, and was glad to see that there was an Orthodox_Deacons mailing list on YahooGroups. I applied to join it, but there was no response. The last message was posted there more than two years ago, and attempts to contact the moderator have proved futile. It would be nice if it could be revived, but unless one can contact the moderator there is not much chance of that.

It might, however, be possible to start another mailing list if there is enough demand for it, and so I’m asking any Orthodox deacons who might be reading this to let me know in a comment below, or in some other way, whether they think it is a good idea, and if you would be interested in taking part.

It would primarily be an English-language list, but deacons from anywhere in the world who can communicate in English would be welcome to take part.

I have found that the ministry of deacons tends to be neglected. Parishes often say that they are short of priests, but I’ve never heard a parish say it is short of deacons. Bishops say that their dioceses are short of priests, but they rarely say that they are short of deacons. For anyone interested, I’ve written about this in another blog post at Deacons and diaconate | Khanya.

I hope that on such a mailing list we would be able to share information about resources that would be useful for the ministry of deacons, and news of what deacons in different places are doing.

So if you are a deacon, and would be interested in joining such a list, please e-mail me: Deacon Stephen Hayes, or you can leave a comment in the comments section below. And please mail or tweet or otherwise pass on this link to other deacons you may know. You should be able to do this by clicking on one of the buttons below. Even if you aren’t a deacon, and you’ve read this far, you can still pass this on to some deacons that you know.

And one last thing: if you are on Twitter, and tweet anything that may be interesting or useful to deacons, or news about diaconal ministry, if you use the hash-tags #deacons or #diaconate, they will probably end up in a weekly digest of Twitter links called #Diaconate. You can click to see a sample. It will only collect tweels with links to web pages, and as a weekly digest it can be quite useful.


  1. I am not a deacon. I encourage (as we say in Texas) y'all to get in touch with each other.

    Since a big piece of y'all's primary "work" concerns the laity, I think you're missing a big opportunity by blocking interaction with those of us who are not clergy.

    For my part, I think the role of the deacon is almost entirely disregarded, under-valued, and under-utilized; this is a subject about which I've thought and written for some time. The more priests do their "job" (and not the "job" of the deacon), and the more the deacon does his "job" (and that not limited to his role in the liturgy), the more likely it is that we the laity will do our "job" and, therefore, far more likely that the communities that surround us will venture into our domain and start being saved.

    In the meantime, I too have started a blog ( ) which is this lay person's attempt to have a conversation with those who are being saved and who don't have --but are in hot pursuit of-- "answers."

  2. Thanks for the link! The list has started, so please encourage any deacons you know to join us.

  3. _ _

    There is a real need to establish a permanent Eastern Orthodox presence in Malta. There is a substantial Russian, Bulgarian and Serbian community that needs pastoring. The Greek Orthodox Patriarchate currently flies in a Priest for Holy Week (and sometimes for Nativity). I believe the Catholic Church in Malta will warmly welcome the opportunity to deepen her Orthodox roots which go all the way back to the three month stay of Sts Paul and Luke c. A.D. 60. (Acts 28).

    Thank you.