dea·​con | \ ˈdē-kən How to pronounce deacon (audio) \

Definition of deacon

: a subordinate officer in a Christian church: such as
a : a Roman Catholic, Anglican, or Eastern Orthodox cleric ranking next below a priest
b : one of the laymen elected by a church with congregational polity to serve in worship, in pastoral care, and on administrative committees
c : a Mormon in the lowest grade of the Aaronic priesthood

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Examples of deacon in a Sentence

my cousin was married by his uncle, who is also a deacon in his church
Recent Examples on the Web Can a shifty-eyed deacon, recently transferred to the local church, be trusted? Doreen St. Félix, The New Yorker, "Gender and Genre in “Made for Love” and “Mare of Easttown”," 3 May 2021 Hoeppner allegedly pressured deacon candidate Ron Vasek not to mention his allegation against Grundhaus, even coercing Vasek to sign a letter indicating the abuse did not happen. Jean Hopfensperger, Star Tribune, "Minnesota bishop resigns at pope's request after abuse coverup," 13 Apr. 2021 The question was whether the ex-deacon, now 84 and enfeebled, would live long enough to hear it. David A. Hammer,, "Monster in our midst: Despite predatory past, deacon welcomed back to Catholic institutions," 18 Dec. 2020 In January, a judge in Latah County dismissed Rench's charges of misdemeanor resisting arrest and violating the city's mask mandate, though the church deacon argued the city violated its own code when authorities arrested him and two others. Kaelan Deese, Washington Examiner, "Trio arrested at Idaho church for mask violations sues city in federal lawsuit," 24 Mar. 2021 In a recent account published by the Associated Press, a deacon at an Orthodox Church said at least 800 were killed on the weekend of Nov. 28-29 and that thousands likely died overall. Washington Post, "Massacre by Eritrean troops in Ethiopia’s Tigray region may constitute crime against humanity, Amnesty says," 26 Feb. 2021 As a deacon for the Roman Catholic Church, Albert Gonzalez volunteered at Perryville Prison, administering baptisms, blessed marriages and more for 40 years., "Help support local journalism like this," 11 Mar. 2021 Laurentius, a Christian deacon, is said to have been martyred by the Romans in 258 AD on an iron outdoor stove. Joe Rao, Scientific American, "Promising Perseid Meteor Shower Will Peak Soon," 9 Aug. 2013 Bob was a member, elder and deacon of Brunswick Reformed Church. Sam Boyer, cleveland, "These super ladies continue good work despite obstacles: Whit & Whimsey," 19 Feb. 2021

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'deacon.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of deacon

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for deacon

Middle English dekene, from Old English dēacon, from Late Latin diaconus, from Greek diakonos, literally, servant, from dia- + -konos (akin to enkonein to be active); perhaps akin to Latin conari to attempt

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Time Traveler for deacon

Time Traveler

The first known use of deacon was before the 12th century

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Statistics for deacon

Last Updated

7 May 2021

Cite this Entry

“Deacon.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 12 May. 2021.

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More Definitions for deacon



English Language Learners Definition of deacon

: an official in some Christian churches whose rank is just below a priest
: a member of some Christian churches who has special duties


dea·​con | \ ˈdē-kən How to pronounce deacon (audio) \

Kids Definition of deacon

1 : an official in some Christian churches ranking just below a priest
2 : a church member in some Christian churches who has special duties

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