The diaconate is the first order or grade in ordained ministry. Any man who is to be ordained to the priesthood must first be ordained as a transitional deacon. Deacons serve in the ministries of liturgy, Word, and charity.
In 1979 the Diocese of Gary instituted a formation program for deacon candidates. The first permanent deacons were ordained in 1981. Deacons were also ordained in 1982, 1983, 2000, 2003 and 2007.
Liturgically, deacons can officiate at baptisms, weddings, wake services and funerals, and, when properly trained, preach. In addition, deacons can engage in other ministries, e.g., prisons, religious education, youth, etc. All deacons must also attend at least 20 hours of continuing education each year.
We are fortunate to have Deacon Rob at our parish. He was ordained on June 2, 2007 at Holy Angels Cathedral in Gary by Bishop Dale Melczek. He has been assigned to work here with Father Mike at St. Stephen Martyr Parish, and also at the diocesan level as the coordinator for the Lake County Juvenile Center in Crown Point.
Deacon Rob serves our parish as a member of the finance committee, and also as the Education Committee leader on the Pastoral Council. He and his wife Barb also teach Baptism classes and Marriage Preparation classes, and also lead the team when there is a RCIA candidate.
In addition to giving the homilies at the weekend masses once a month, Deacon Rob also works in the parish office.