The local church officer next in rank to an elder. Deacons have care of the church’s temporal business, are responsible for the care of the church property (all bills for upkeep are referred to the treasurer), assist the elders in the celebration of the Lord’s Supper by receiving the bread and wine from the pastor or elder and serving the members, help in making the physical arrangement for the Communion service and the baptismal service, and have a particular charge of relieving the poor, the unfortunate, and the needy sick. The deacon is elected to office by the church for a term of one year, and must be reelected if he is to continue in office. He must be ordained to his office ( see Ordination ) by an ordained minister holding credentials from the conference. A deacon once ordained...

From the Seventh-day Adventist Encyclopedia. Published with permission from the Review and Herald Publishing Association.