Deacons Cut Ribbons


imagesAbout 5 years ago I, along with our Senior Pastor and other church members, attended a graduation at a city school that is an alternative school. These students easily fall through the cracks in larger public schools. This school is designed to help students who come from broken homes, who are parents themselves, who have given up on their education.

Many of the students testified that they were the first in their family to receive a high school diploma. One 19-year-old shared how she has a six-year-old daughter, which resulted in her no longer attending classes. But she was inspired to go back and to get her degree.

Why were we there? Our church is entering into a partnership with this school to support their work. In the next year, the church will be sending volunteers to the school to tutor, to help students get jobs, and empower them to serve in their community. During the graduation service, there was a signing of the partnership agreement, and a ribbon cutting, to make it all official.

I got to cut the ribbon.

At the time the symbolism was lost on me. It was more of an “in-the-moment” kind of moment. It wasn’t really scripted. I, somewhat comically, ended up in the middle of the ribbon and the scissors just appeared in front of me. And so, I cut the ribbon.

I know that deacons are not the only ones who can cut ribbons. But looking back at that moment, it was a perfect symbol for the ministry of the deacon.

The deacon represents the connection between the church and the world, so often described as a bridge. I’m not really sure why this partnership signing had to be sealed with the cutting of a ribbon, but the deacon being able to do so symbolizes that connection between the church and the world.

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Deaconess’ Call: Brenda Romenius

In 2015 I was collecting call stories from my friends who are serving in diaconal ministries expressed in the United Methodist Church through the provisional and ordained deacon, diaconal ministers, deaconesses, and home missioners.  In this post, you will hear from Brenda Romenius who is a commissioned deaconess currently serving as Director of Christian Education at St. John’s United Methodist in Springfield, Virginia.  Here are Brenda’s words: 

“The call” is as unique to each of us as we are unique from each other.  And yet, it is the same because it is a beckoning open to everyone that takes us into a place of service on behalf of God and Jesus Christ.

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