What is a Deacon?

November 10, 2021

From Pastor Joey:

Kathleen Charters, United Methodist Deacon

In January 2022, Kathleen Charters will go before the Baltimore/Washington Conference Board of Ministry of the United Methodist Church, seeking ordination. Currently, she is a Commissioned Deacon serving at TUMC as our parish nurse.

Recently, the Staff-Parish Committee voted to continue our relationship with Kathleen so that after ordination, TUMC might be her appointment. The committee was enthusiastic, but several times asked the question, “What is a Deacon?”

The short answer is that a Deacon in the United Methodist Church is ordained to Word, Service, Compassion, and Justice. I want you to hear from Kathleen about her calling and her spiritual journey.

“In 1987, I was a navy nurse in San Diego attending San Carlos UMC. I began earnestly seeking–asking the question, “What does God want for my life?” I went into the sanctuary. It was dark and it was quiet. I was praying, ‘God what do you want for me to do?’ Suddenly a light streamed through the stained-glass window. I heard a voice say clearly, ‘I send you where the need is greatest.’ I’ve tried to live into that ever since.

“In 2006, I retired from the military as a navy nurse and entered into the inquiring candidate process of the Methodist Church to discover if the ministry path was for me. I discerned a call to become a deacon in the church and entered seminary. At St. Mary’s Ecumenical Institute in Baltimore, Maryland, I earned a Master’s of Arts in Church Ministry-Parish Nursing.

“From 2008-2019 I worked for the Department of Veterans Affairs and later the Department of Defense on spiritual fitness. Before retiring from the Department of Defense, I conducted a three-year research project for Special Operation Forces to determine ‘What strengthens a service member’s connection to a higher power.’

“In 2018 I moved to Sequim and retired from the military as a civil service consultant. After finding a fit at TUMC. I became a member of the staff leading Wellness Ministry and eventually as the parish nurse.”

In January 2022, Kathleen goes before the Board of Ministry in the Baltimore/Washington Conference. She will be examined to become a full member of the Order of Deacons with the hope of being ordained on June 3, 2022. At that time she hopes to be appointed by Bishop Easterling of the Baltimore/Washington Conference in coordination with Bishop Elaine Stanovsky of the Pacific Northwest Annual Conference to serve here at TUMC. Pray for Kathleen as she goes through this process. She sees it as a blessing to serve here and she is looking forward to her continued ministry with joy.

Some Concerns that we have:

  • Pastor Brad and Dorothy Beeman for comfort and peace at the death of Brad’s mother.
  • For those who continue to go through physical struggles, those who are dealing with cancer, or other health situations. For those who are emotionally feeling lost and alone.
  • For those who haven’t been vaccinated yet; for all those who are ill from the Covid-19 virus; for those families who have lost loved ones to the virus; and for essential workers.
  • For peace in our country.
  • For Katherine Parker, missionary to Nepal.