On Saturday, Jan. 30, I attended a service in which one of my colleagues was being ordained as a deacon in the Anglican Church together with ten others who were being ordained either as priests or deacons. The presiding bishop was Archbishop Desmond Tutu! He delivered the sermon.
An autographed photo of Jimmy Carter sits on our piano. A friend of ours wrote to Carter and told him that he was one of our sons' favorite presidents, and would he please send them a signed photograph. When Keith gave our sons the Carter picture last Christmas, my 8-year-old actually teared up.
In last week's post, I argued that because the apostle Paul commended the work of Phoebe-a deacon (Romans 16:1-2)-the tradition of female deacons continued throughout the early centuries, as noted both by the archaeological evidence and also in Christian literature preserved from this period.
Only God would open up an opportunity for a Catholic from San Francisco to speak prophetically to the Prime Minister of Australia, at the Anglican Centre in Rome, on behalf of Cambodians about to lose their land in Phnom Penh. God cares that much about the poor.
As you may know, the question of whether women can serve as deacons has been recently debated among many evangelicals. Since scripture makes clear that Phoebe served as a deacon in the church in Cenchrea, there is an abundance of historical and archeological evidence that women deacons were upheld by the apostles. Both Clement of Alexandria and John Chrysostom recognize Phoebe was a deacon.