Forming and Supporting Deacons to Serve in the Lutheran Church

Order of St Stephen, Deacon
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Frequently Asked Questions

We are called to serve Christ by helping to serve the people.

Frequently Asked Questions


Are deacons paid? 

    No, deacons are not paid by the churches or organizations they serve.

Are deacons supervised? 

    Yes, all deacons must be supervised by an ordained pastor.

What is the code of dress for a deacon? 

     Often dress is determined by an agreement by the pastor and the deacon.  Deacons are not encouraged to wear a clerical collar unless directed to do so by their pastor.  The appropriate attire for a deacon in most circumstances is a collared polo type shirt with the deacon’s cross embroidered over the heart.

Does the Order hold an Orientation for perspective candidates or those interested in learning more about the Order of St. Stephen, Deacon? 

    The Formation and Discernment Workshop addresses orientation questions and issues as well as helps to clarify a deacon’s role for perspective candidates to the Order.

Does the Order have a Constitution and or by-laws?

    Yes and they can be found on the Order’s web site:

What are the types of membership in the Order?

  • ·      Active-set-apart Deacon
  • ·      Set-apart Deacon awaiting a call
  • ·      Candidate Deacon
  • ·      Retired Deacon

Does the Order have dues? 

    Yes, there is an annual membership dues of $15.00 paid at the April Annual Meeting.

Does the Order offer Scholarships?  

    Classes generally cost only $55 per session, shorter classes and seminars only $25 and it is understood that even this could be a financial hardship. There are limited funds are available to members of the Order who are current with their membership requirements. It is traditional that the financial burden is shared 1/3 from the candidate, 1/3 from their congregation,  and 1/3 from the scholarship fund.  Contact the Arch Deacon for information and requests for scholarship.

Do I have to complete the background check even if I have had a background check for my employer?

     Yes you must complete the Order’s required background check to comply with the Safe Churches for Children resolution. The arrangement with background check companies usually precludes sharing the results with other organizations.

Why is there a psychological assessment required for admittance into the Order? 

    Deacons are called to serve the Lord and a decision to join the Order of St. Stephen should coincide with a discernment process.  As seminarians and pastors are psychologically evaluated so are deacons to assure their stability and mind set when working with congregations.

Where do I go to take the psychological examination?

     Any qualified psychologist familiar with evaluating those called to the ministry may administer the psychological evaluation testing.  The Order currently is using PCA Associates, 1205 York Road, Suite 30A, Lutherville, MD 21093.  Phone: 410-828-6062. Email: Cost for the testing is approximately $300 and the results should be sent in confidence to the presiding Archdeacon.

Where do I send paperwork

    Please send any and all written correspondence including applications to the OSSD, c/o Salem Lutheran Church, 905 Frederick Rd, Catonsville, MD 21228.