Crain contends that the order of deacon clarifies that service and transformation of the world is at the center of the church's purpose and that leaders should be ordained to lead that work. This puts deacons at the leading edge of the church's mission of making disciples for the transformation of the world. It also shows how the Church can attract future leaders who have a vocation of ministry but who may not see themselves necessarily ministering in local churches.
Using qualitative research and interviewing key people, Crain candidly addresses issues that are raised by the office of deacon as she recounts the history and "so what" of this office of clergy. She couches her discussion in the broader conversation concerning the failure of Christianity to adequately respond to social injustice and inequality worldwide.
The year 2021 marks the 25th anniversary of the institution of the order of Deacon by The United Methodist Church. This milestone offers the opportunity for the Church to reflect on the ministry of deacons as the author takes readers behind the curtain to learn how, in 1996, the decision to create the order of deacon came to be-a decision that is still controversial. UM deacons, around the world, still struggle with sexism and patriarchal assumptions that hamper the ministries and security of deacons, and they spend too much energy justifying their existence and explaining who they are and what they do.