Three students in the deaconess program at Concordia Seminary, St. Louis, are anticipating placement in May 2004. These deaconess students are the first ones to have completed the classroom requirements of the program which the Seminary began in fall 2002. Two students will be assigned an internship in May, and the third will receive her divine call.
“We rejoice with these three women as they are about to take this important step in their lives of service to our Lord,” commented Dcs. Theresa List, assistant to the dean of the Graduate School, for diaconal studies. “They have been working diligently in the classroom and in off-campus formation experiences and are eager to serve in congregations and institutions as the Lord directs.”
Both as intern or candidate, Concordia Seminary’s deaconess students receive instruction and experience in caring spiritually for the hospitalized, home-bound, grieving and needy. Other preparation includes developing and leading Bible classes or religion classes, caring for people physically and spiritually, especially women, youth and evangelism.
“A deaconess serves in three main areas: spiritual care, mercy care, and teaching the faith,” explained List. “Deaconesses and deaconess interns can practice this diaconal care in parishes, in specialized institutions such as nursing homes, hospitals, prisons, mental health facilities, or in foreign or domestic missions.”
A deaconess who receives a divine call serves at the calling entity for the duration of the call. A deaconess intern normally serves for 9-12 months being supervised by a pastor or another deaconess. After finishing all classroom requirements prior to internship, the deaconess intern will be eligible to receive a call immediately after her internship. This allows churches and agencies the freedom to offer convertible internships, so that a student deaconess may be called by her internship site and remain there as a called and commissioned deaconess.
For more information on the Seminary’s deaconess program, contact Dcs. Theresa List at (314) 505-7147, email@example.com. For more information on receiving a deaconess candidate or intern, contact Prof. Larry Rockemann at (314) 505-7201, firstname.lastname@example.org. Both can be reached by writing to them at Concordia Seminary, 801 DeMun Ave., St. Louis, MO 63105.