On Dec. 10, 2017, The Rev. Chester Hines will join the clergy team as Deacon of Holy Communion. In addition to his service in this congregation, Chester serves as the chair of the Dismantling Racism Commission for the Diocese of Missouri. Chester will participate in leading worship and will help equip the Holy Communion congregation as we seek to expand our outreach and social justice work in the region.
Chester is married to Elizabeth English Hines, a retired educator. They have twin sons, Christian and Christopher, both of whom live out of state. Chester’s career has been largely focused on public service, and he currently serves as an Unemployment Insurance Auditor for Missouri Department of Labor and Industrial Relations. Chester discerned his call to the Vocational Diaconate at Holy Communion and was ordained a deacon in November of 2014. He served for three years as Deacon at Christ Church Cathedral before coming “home.”
What is a “Deacon?”
In the Episcopal Church, deacons are a distinct order of ordained ministers. In some other Protestant denominations the title “deacon” applies to a member selected within a congregation to serve in a particular leadership role or on a board. The Episcopal Church tradition maintains a deacon is one of three distinct orders of ordained ministers (bishops, priests, deacons). Within the Anglican Communion (as in the Roman Catholic and Orthodox Churches) an individual becomes a deacon by being ordained by a bishop after having completed a course of study and formation. Deacons are particularly charged at their ordination:
“to a special ministry of servanthood directly under your bishop. In the name of Jesus Christ, you are to serve all people, particularly the poor, the weak, the sick, and the lonely.”
Deacons call us all into the ministry of service, of advocacy, and of justice. We are grateful that Chester is coming to invite us into that work.