"Deacon" is a Syrian word that means servant. In Greek, it is "Diakon". The deacon's main job is to help the priest or bishop in his religious service. The first church appointed seven deacons, who were filled with the Holy Spirit and wisdom, "Then the twelve summoned the multitude of the disciples and said... therefore brethren, seek out from among you seven men of good reputation,

full of the Holy Spirit and wisdom, whom we may appoint over this business." (Acts 6:2-3).

"Whom they set before the apostles, and when they had prayed, they laid hands on them." (Acts 6:6)

Our teacher St. Paul listed some qualifications for the deacon in his first epistle to his disciple Timothy, chapter 3: Likewise deacons must be:


Not double-tongued

Not greedy for money

Holding the mystery of the faith with a pure conscience

Ruling their children and their own houses well

They should be tested first, and then, if they pass the test, they are to serve.

Being a deacon is the first and least rank in the priesthood ranks, St. Paul praises it saying,

"For those who have served well as deacons obtain for themselves a good standing and great boldness in the faith which is in Christ Jesus." (1 Tim 3:13)


There are 5 ranks of deacons:

A. Chanter (Epsaltos)

B. Reader (Agnostes)

C. Subdeacon (Epi-diakon)

D. Deacon (Diakon)

E. Archdeacon


The Deacons Home Page of the Coptic Orthodox Diocese of the Southern United States:



Requirements for Sub-Deacons.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [473.6 KB]
Subdeacon exam study guide-1.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [128.8 KB]
Christ in the Eucharist - Fr Tadros Mala[...]
Adobe Acrobat document [4.3 MB]
St. Mary Veneration .pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [327.3 KB]
Epsaltos lesson 1.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [15.1 MB]
Deacons 2.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [27.4 MB]
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