Oct 26, 2019Deacon Sherrill Russel Receives St. Stephen’s Award

Deacon Sherrill Russel Receives St. Stephen’s Award

Congratulations to Deacon Sherrill Russel for receiving the St. Stephen Award for her service as a committed deacon and her outstanding work as a natural evangelist and pastoral minister.

The Venerable Bruce Bower Two-minute read.   Resources
Deacon Sherrill Russel Receives St. Stephen’s Award. Image credit: Gary Allman

Beginning in 1995 the Association for Episcopal Deacons initiated a program to provide formal recognition for the ministry and work of deacons. With 4,141 deacons now active in the United States and Canada it is important to identify some of the outstanding ministry deacons do as well as the individual deacons who carry out Christ’s work in our midst. Every three years, a handful of outstanding deacons are recognized for their diaconal ministry. The criteria for this recognition are the fundamental statement of the Bishop at the ordination of a deacon:

My brother/sister, every Christian is called to follow Jesus Christ, serving God the Father, through the power of the Holy Spirit. God now calls you to a special ministry of servanthood directly under your bishop. In the name of Jesus Christ, you are to serve all people, particularly the poor, the weak, the sick, and the lonely. As a deacon in the Church, you are to study the Holy Scriptures, to seek nourishment from them, and to model your life upon them. You are to make Christ and his redemptive love known, by your word and example, to those among whom you live, and work, and worship. You are to interpret to the Church the needs, concerns, and hopes of the world. You are to assist the bishop and priests in public worship and in the ministration of God’s Word and Sacraments, and you are to carry out other duties assigned to you from time to time. At all times, your life and teaching are to show Christ’s people that in serving the helpless they are serving Christ himself.

Book of Common Prayer, page 543

Deacons recommended by their dioceses for recognition exemplify this charge in their lives and active ministry. They carry out the charge of their ordination and then go the extra mile … or two. The Association for Episcopal Deacons is honored to share in the recognition of these persons. They represent the ministry of deacons at its best. Through their work, Christ’s people are well served.

The Rev. Deacon Sherrill Russell at Church of the Redeemer was nominated (and approved) for this award because of her long tenure as a committed deacon and her outstanding work as a natural evangelist and pastoral minister. Sherrill’s work as a deacon has not just been about “doing” this work, but also in leading her congregation into the important work of serving others in God’s Kingdom.

Deacon Sherrill received her award from the Venerable Bruce Bower during the Diocesan Convention Eucharist on Saturday, October 26, 2019.

The Venerable Bruce Bower is the Archdeacon of The Diocese of West Missouri.

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