Michael A. Hayes

This address was given to the National Assembly of Deacons and IDC North European Conference on 'The Deacon in the Body of Christ' at St Mary's University College, Twickenham, on 24 June 2011. We publish an edited version of it here.

I would like to add my welcome to you to St Mary's for this National Assembly of Deacons and IDC North European Conference on 'The Deacon in the Body of Christ'.

On 16 April 1979 I was ordained a deacon by the late Archbishop Dermot Ryan of Dublin. While I was clear that my ordination was part of a threefold ministry of deacon, priest, and bishop, it was very much a transitional ministry as part of and a step towards priestly ordination which happened in June 1980. My own diocese of Southwark first ordained permanent deacons in the late 1970s and so when I began my pastoral ministry as a priest I encountered permanent deacons for the first time. I am no expert on the permanent diaconate and I make no pretence at that here either. I have been, however, editor of The Pastoral Review since 2005, and it is for that reason that I am probably here this evening.

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