|Head Deacon||Clifford Stoddard|
|Assist Head Deacon||Peter Pond|
|Head Deaconess||Mereen Stoddard|
|Deaconess||Leslyn Mc Pherson|
In the account of the choosing of the men who came to be known as the seven deacons of the apostolic church, as recorded in Acts 6:1-8, we are told that they were chosen and ordained to attend to the "business" of the church.
But the call to the office of deacon included more than caring for the business of the fast-growing Christian community. The deacons were engaged in an important part of the Lord's work, demanding qualifications but slightly less exacting than those of an elder. (See 1 Tim. 3:8-13.) "The fact that these brethren had been ordained for the special work of looking after the needs of the poor, did not exclude them from teaching the faith. On the contrary, they were fully qualified to instruct others in the truth, and they engaged in the work with great earnestness and success." The Acts of the Apostles, p. 90. Stephen, the first Christian martyr, and Philip, afterward called "the evangelist," were among the first seven deacons chosen in the Christian church (Acts 6:5, 6; 8:5-26; 21:8).
This inspired arrangement resulted in great progress in the building up of the work of the early church. "The appointment of the seven to take the oversight of special lines of work, proved a great blessing to the church. These officers gave careful consideration to individual needs as well as to the general financial interests of the church, and by their prudent management and their godly example they were an important aid to their fellow officers in binding together the various interests of the church into a united whole." The Acts of the Apostles, p. 89.
The appointment of deacons in the present-day church through election by the church brings similar blessings in church administration by relieving pastors, elders, and other officers of duties that may well be performed by deacons. "The time and strength of those who in the providence of God have been placed in leading positions of responsibility in the church, should be spent in dealing with the weightier matters demanding special wisdom and largeness of heart. It is not in the order of God that such men should be appealed to for the adjustment of minor matters that others are well qualified to handle." The Acts of the Apostles, p. 93