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Word, Liturgy, Charity


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Table of Contents

Introduction 1. What is the Purpose of the Diaconate?: A Normative Description of the Diaconate Michal J. Kramarek 2. How is the Diaconate Changing?: Trends in the Presence and Ministry of Deacons Mary L. Gautier 3. Who are the Deacons?: Demographic Characteristics of Deacons Mary L. Gautier 4. What Does It Take to Become a Deacon?: Deacons' Vocation and Formation Michal J. Kramarek 5. What Do the Deacons Do?: The Ministries of Deacons Thu T. Do, L.H.C. and Michal J. Kramarek 6. Is It Satisfying to Be a Deacon?: Measuring Satisfaction among Deacons Jonathon L. Wiggins 7. What Does It Mean to Be a Deacon's Wife? Mark M. Gray 8. Where Do Deacons Fit within the Diocese? Thomas P. Gaunt, S.J.

About the Author

The Center for Applied Research in the Apostolate (CARA) is a national, nonprofit, Georgetown University affiliated Catholic research center that conducts social scientific studies about the Catholic Church.


CARA's new study of the permanent diaconate comprehensively looks back on the fifty years since the Vatican II restoration of this order, highlighting the deacons' significant contribution to ministry. The first to the fifth centuries have been referred to as the Golden Age of the diaconate but this study confirms the amazing growth, striking witness, and remarkable achievement of the diaconate since its restoration, indeed a wonderful account of service well rendered. It is a must read for anyone involved with the initial or ongoing formation of deacons as well as bishops, pastors, and ecclesial ministers seeking to better understand this restored order. -- Gerald F. Kicanas, Bishop Emeritus of the Diocese of Tucson
This new book from CARA, drawing upon a wealth of information from decades of research, provides an excellent analysis of the data needed to construct pastorally effective models of the diaconate for the Church in the United States today. -- W. Shawn McKnight, Bishop of Jefferson City
Word, Liturgy, Charity is not only informational, but edifying. It drew me into the history, purpose, and meaning of the diaconate, while deepening my appreciation of diaconal ministry today. More than recommend it, I would list it among the required readings of those who are discerning the call to the diaconate. The entire book, especially the chapter, `What Does it Mean to Be a Deacon's Wife,' will be helpful for women who are accompanying their husbands on their diaconal journeys; indeed, it could launch fruitful conversations about the likely impact of the diaconate on the couple's relationship with one another, their families, and their parishes. -- Dianne Traflet, Seton Hall University
CARA has once again produced an exceptional resource for understanding better the renewed ministry of deacons in the Catholic Church. This volume, which offers significant new research and analysis built on the foundation of CARA's multi-year studies of the diaconate, is invaluable in providing actual data mapping the reality of the diaconate in the United States. The positive impact of this new work will be felt for years to come and we are all indebted to the authors and to CARA for their continuing diligence, care, precision, and dedication. -- William T. Ditewig, former USCCB Executive Director of the Secretariat for the Diaconate

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