Getting Diaconate care
1. Contact us
You can reach us at the Diaconate Helpline at 917-719-0259.
The leadership team determines whether to accept you as a client based on a list of criteria (such as Redeemer affiliation, type of need, and asset information).
3. Getting care
You will be assigned a deacon, deaconess or a pair of deacons and deaconesses depending on your needs once you have been accepted as a Diaconate client. Our goal is to partner with you and see your situation change over time until you no longer need our assistance. This partnership is a two-way street. We expect you to be honest with us and to make full disclosure of your financial situation. You can expect us to strive to understand you, encourage and love you in Christ, provide for your basic needs when appropriate, and pray for and with you.
If you need immediate financial assistance
Redeemer’s congregations have given generously over the years to enable the Diaconate to provide financial assistance to those in our church community who are in need.
Information on financial assistance
For clients seeking financial assistance, we will first ask to go over your budget. Requests will be considered based on a client’s basic living needs. Each request for financial assistance goes through a review process sometimes involving several people. Clients may be asked to consider letting go of nonessential living expenses before assistance is approved. Financial assistance may continue over time; however, it would be with the intent of reducing and eventually discontinuing our financial assistance when appropriate. The Diaconate occasionally provides long-term financial assistance but does not provide loans under any circumstances, nor does it compensate for individual business risks. Please understand that financial assistance is not guaranteed, and that the Diaconate is not always able to provide it.
Do I have to be a member to receive help?
No, but you do have to be a regular attender, and Redeemer should be your “home church.”
Do I have to be a Christian to become a client?
No. You may be struggling with Christianity when you approach us. We will help you become familiar with the gospel (salvation by Christ) because the core of our ministry is to rely on God’s provision for you.
How many people will know about my situation?
The Diaconate adheres to a strict confidentiality policy. Only the Diaconate staff as well as the deacons or deaconesses working with you will know your identity. In addition, no one who does not need to know the details of your situation will be told about them. With a client’s prior written approval, some information may be exchanged between his or her deacons or deaconesses and others who are critical to providing care for him or her, such as a counselor or a Community Group leader. There are a few exceptional circumstances when the Diaconate is obligated to share information with appropriate parties. These include the following instances: threats of suicide or homicide, indication of child abuse, alerts to intentions of law-breaking, and when the Diaconate is subject to a subpoena or court order. Also, when a situation arises among church members that appears to require church disciplinary involvement, the Diaconate will share necessary information discreetly to the parties involved.
How often will I meet with my deacons or deaconesses?
The frequency of meeting depends on various factors such as the nature of your situation and your financial, emotional or spiritual needs. It can range from once a week to once a month or even once a quarter. There will be phone and email contact as well.
Who do I contact if I have disagreements with my deacons or deaconesses?
If you find yourself in conflict with your deacon or deaconess, the Diaconate recommends what Jesus says in Matthew 18: “If your brother sins against you, go and show him his fault, just between the two of you.” We ask that clients communicate directly with their deacons or deaconesses about concerns they may be having about their interactions with their deacons or deaconesses. If, however, after you have tried to communicate with them and are not satisfied with the outcome, you may take the next step of Matthew 18 by calling a Diaconate staff member at 212-808-4460.