Why can't young ministers 17 years old be ordained deacons

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I am a young minister been preaching for 4 years in the AME church, have been licensed and have been accepted on trail to the Annual Conference. I'm also in my seconded year of study of the Board of Examiners. My question is why can't young minsters be ordained deacons when they have done the work.

-- Anonymous, April 09, 2002


Bro Brandon:

The laws of the church have changed so often and more and more church officials are beginning to follow the Discipline concerning ordination. The diaconate order is usually given after the third year studies. There are no restrictions for being ordained deacon. The restriction comes when it time to be ordained elder. One must complete seminary to be ordained itinerant elder.

You should be ordained deacon if you have passed the board of Examiners. The main decision however is left up to your Bishop. He determines who is progressed or retained during Annual Conference. I hope this answers your question.

-- Anonymous, April 09, 2002

The reason is that you can't be ordained is because the Discipline says that you must have a bachelor's degree to be ordained a elder.

-- Anonymous, April 10, 2002

Not only a Bachelor's degree, but "must be a graduate of a Seminary accredited by the Association of Theological Schools or similar Accrediting agencies." (2000 Discipline p. 97) This is a slight change and clarification of the 1996 Discipline which stated "...should be a graduate..."

-- Anonymous, April 13, 2002

Bro. Clark: How do you interpret the sentence which immediately follows the one you quote from p 97, "Exception to these requirements is at the discretion of the Annual Conference Board of Examiners with the approval of the Presiding Bishop"? This reads like compromise language to assist worthy candidates for ordination as itinerant elder who lack a M.Div. credential. QED

-- Anonymous, April 13, 2002

it is funny that he asked that. i am going through the same thing here in the 6th district. I have been licensed to preach for three years. i have done the class of admissions 2 times. yet i have not been admitted to conference. the problem is i do not have a highschool diploma. i am 18 and about to graduate. however a problem is still there for some reason. i find out if i graduate the friday before my annual conference. the actual ceremony is the sunday after the conference closes. we are talking a matter of days. i see its the law but sometimes the law should be bent for certain people. if i was 25 and had not uptained a diploma then i can see. at 16 i have no choice but to be in high school. the experience ha been good and bad. bad because i did all the work and did not make it. i preach about 3 times a month. i travel the church alot. just hold on my brother. at least you have been admitted. i'm still waiting.

-- Anonymous, April 24, 2002

Grace be unto you and Peace from God our Father and Christ our Lord!!

-- Anonymous, October 08, 2003

We have a process that has been established with much prayer and faith that God is in the process helping us to select and grow ministers for this church. True, many have short-circuited the process. Many church ills can be traced to that circumvention. To a 17-year old, I say: Complete you education, College and Seminary and wait on the Lord. I have a person in my church who is not applying for admission to the Conference until he completes his Bachelor's degree.

Be Blessed

-- Anonymous, October 10, 2003

Hi Bro. Davis im also in the same boat, I must do my Bth before I can get ordained an elder but to be a deacon its easy will be ordained in 2005!

Peace out of African Lic. Wesley Crowley Sims Chapel A.M.E Church- Stellenbosch Cape Town South Africa

-- Anonymous, January 22, 2004

Bro Brandon, This question should be directed to your pastor.

-- Anonymous, January 22, 2004

Let's clarify this for Bro. Brandon. First of all Bro. Brandon if you are going to be effective as a minister in this connection, you will be holy ghost filled, fire baptized, Bible believing as well as Discipline discerning. As a young man who has completed two years of study with the Board of Examiners p. 97 clearly states why you cannot be ordained.

Part V. Section II Subsection D "All candidates for ordination to the itinerant ministry must be college graduates."

To be ordained a deacon in the itinerant ministry you need a degree.

Your frustration rests in the failure of your conference to heed the discipline. You should not have been admitted on trial since you not qualify for ordination at the appropriate stage in the process.

I don't think this is a bad thing. The church has given you a license to preach, this is a wonderful thing, it allows you to exercise your prophetic voice without the burden of pastoral leadership which you may not be ready to undertake.

Although I am not a clergy person, I think that it is one thing to preach to the people but pastoring them is a whole other ballgame.

I really think it was an injustice for your conference to enter in a process where your colleagues will move on to the title of Rev. while you must continue your preparation.

You need your education, and you need some time to grow up and experience life, it will enhance your preaching.

I once heard of a bishop who accepted a young woman into the conference she was 18. She was ordained and she was sent every weekend to a church 250 miles from her home.

The bishop of her conference was roundly criticized for sending her to the small charge so far a way. But he was within his rights for she accepted the responsibilities that ought to come with ordination.

Within a couple of years she had a child out of wed lock and finished college and took on a career in finance and banking. She still retains her ordination but now she is not willing to do the work of ministry outside of the pulpit associate role.

She was too young and too immature for the job. I don't you or your maturity level but it my prayer that the Lord will give patience and understanding.

-- Anonymous, January 22, 2004

My Question is why does the organization determain your maturity level in God. If you are truely called and walking in the realm of the prothetic only God anoints you there. AME or any other organization has no such authurity. The true conflict is not with you and maturity or unfinished education. But it is with the doctrines of man. For in the last days God will pour his spirit upon all flesh sons and daughters shall prophesy. See God knew brandon and ordain when he was in his mothers womb. Brandon stop waiting on man. MOVE BY GOD!

-- Anonymous, February 14, 2004

-- Anonymous, February 14, 2004

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