A journal of academic theology

Should Deacons Represent Christ the Servant?

Vatican II envisioned a revived permanent diaconate modeled on Christ the servant. That view, well grounded in subsequent church documents and widely appealed to in theological reflection, is criticized increasingly as lacking theological integrity or practical guidance for ministry. This article examines the metaphor itself and its application to the diaconate, concluding that the office in its functional, relational, and sacramental dimensions is indeed structured to represent Christ the servant. This metaphor also illuminates the distinctive calling of deacons in the ecclesial, secular, and post-Christian contexts where they practice their ministry.

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