October 15, 2014 (Source: http://orthodoxdeaconess.org)
The upcoming “Women and Diaconal Ministry Conference” being planned by noted modernist-ecumenist World ‘Orthodox’ for December 6th is official. In the listing of speakers, we have an whole host of prominent liberals. Union Theological, one of the most ultra-liberal Protestant seminaries is hosting the event. One of the most important speakers is a nun from the OCA’s “New Skete Monastery” (the former Uniate monastery that was noted for bringing the ‘spirit of Vatican II’ into the OCA). The rest are women who have doctorates in theology from modernist-ecumenist seminaries, as well as, so far, a Greek Archdiocese priest.
Of course, the whole history of ‘female deacons’ presented is one of grave distortion and heresy. In the West, while it was united with Orthodoxy, women deacons were never ordained by anything like a laying on of hands, nor did they have any liturgical functions whatsoever (they were more in line with being devoted to charitable work). In the East, women were never made readers or sub-deacons; in those few places in which a laying on of hands did take place for blessing women to have a service to assist in the Baptism of women (since at this time Baptisms were all conducted naked), the ministry did not include reading the Gospel, singing Litanies, or doing anything else that was part of the Priesthood. In fact, that these early women deacons did not go through the minor order, reader and sub-deacon, is a key in understanding that the office of female ‘deacons’ was not fundamentally conceived of as being part of the ministry of the Priesthood. Thus, the Bishop did not tonsure them reader and say anything like “My daughter, thou has received the first degree of the priesthood..”
However, modern Antiochians and other World Orthodox do indeed tonsure women readers and their bishops proclaim they have received the ‘first degree of the priesthood.’
The ‘deaconesses’ that did exist in recent memory fell more into the role of charitable workers and church workers, and were made only for monasteries with nuns. Even this practice has been scarce with such a limited role, a role that is fulfilled just as much by lay women who run charitable organizations, help take care of the sick, etc. The attempt to push women’s ordination by World Orthodox is another sign of the decrepit modernism and ecumenism found in those apostate bodies.