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This book is a highly readable, comprehensive study that has established itself as the definitive work on the diaconate. Drawing upon original sources, the book provides valuable insights into the development of the office of the deacon in the early church and situates it within the context of the church's total ministry. Dr. Barnett contends that a radical change in the nature and understanding of the church's ministry took place in the fourth century. A ministry that had included the whole people of God in a horizontal, organic structure gave way to one that was clerical and hierarchical. This change, among other factors, eventually transformed the diaconate into an inconsequential, transitional office on the way to the priesthood. Responding to the present-day revival of the diaconate in the Roman Catholic, Episcopal, Lutheran, and other churches, Barnett calls for a restoration of the office to its original place as full and equal order, thus re-creating the great symbol of the servant ministry that Christ gave to all the church. James Monroe Barnett, now living in retirement in Omaha, is the former rector of Trinity Episcopal Church, Norfolk, NE.

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About the Author:
James Monroe Barnett, now living in retirement in Omaha, is the former rector of Trinity Episcopal Church, Norfolk, NE.
Review:
"...James Monroe Barnett's writing on the diaconate has come at a critical time in the history of contemporary Christianity. Its circulation has not been limited to only one denomination of the Christian church and its scholarship is impeccable. The revised edition reflects Barnett's confidence in his thesis... I recommend the book to anyone who is interested in the practice and theology of the ministry of the church, and especially to those who support the renewal of the diaconate." — Kaye Pitman, Director of the Diaconal Formation Program, reviewing for The Beacon Hill Books Reviewer, Vo. 2, No. 2, 1996 (Kaye Pitman The Beacon Hill Books Reviewer)

"The Diaconate would be a very valuable resource for local churches to study as they struggle to understand and perform their ministry in and to the community. Fortunately, the book is wonderfully readable, as though the author had in mind the wide range of ministering types who in one way or another are deacons in the service of Christ." — Gordon E. Jackson, reviewing for Journal of Ecumenical Studies, Summer 1996 (Gordon E. Jackson Journal of Ecumenical Studies)

"...James Monroe Barnett's writing on the diaconate has come at a critical time in the history of contemporary Christianity. Its circulation has not been limited to only one denomination of the Christian church and its scholarship is impeccable. The revised edition reflects Barnett's confidence in his thesis... I recommend the book to anyone who is interested in the practice and theology of the ministry of the church, and especially to those who support the renewal of the diaconate." — Kaye Pitman, Director of the Diaconal Formation Program, reviewing for The Beacon Hill Books Reviewer, Vo. 2, No. 2, 1996 (Sanford Lakoff The Beacon Hill Books Reviewer)

"The Diaconate would be a very valuable resource for local churches to study as they struggle to understand and perform their ministry in and to the community. Fortunately, the book is wonderfully readable, as though the author had in mind the wide range of ministering types who in one way or another are deacons in the service of Christ." — Gordon E. Jackson, reviewing for Journal of Ecumenical Studies, Summer 1996 (Sanford Lakoff Journal of Ecumenical Studies)

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9780816423316: The Diaconate: A Full and Equal Order

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ISBN 10:  0816423318 ISBN 13:  9780816423316
Publisher: The Seabury Press, 1984
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    Seabur..., 1981
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