The Reformed Deacon: A Deacon’s Personal Library

In the July 1, 2023 episode, Shiloh OPC deacon and OPC CDM member, Tim Hopper and  Rev. C. N. Willborn, pastor of Covenant Presbyterian Church (PCA) in Oak Ridge, Tennessee, talk books—books specifically helpful for deacons to have in their personal libraries. From Bible reading plans to reader’s guides to books on prayer to counseling, Nick and Tim cover a wide range of their recommended favorites in their discussion.  There are even a few websites and videos they suggest checking out. Nick’s wide range of  insight and Tim’s thirst for reading and knowledge on the subject of deacons makes this episode invaluable!

Here’s the list of the books and resources they reference in the episode:

Resources on the office of deacon Rev. John L Girardeau

Notes on Ecclesiology by Thomas Peck

The Deaconship: A Treatise on the Biblical Office by John G.  Lorimer

The Deacon by Cornelis Van Dam 

Presbytery of the Southeast Diaconal Summit 2018 Videos

Chronological Bible reading plan—Greenville Seminary by Ben Shaw

The Westminster Confession of Faith and Catechisms

Confessing the Faith: A Reader’s Guide to the Westminster Confession of Faith by Chad Van Dixhoorn

The Presbyterian Standards by Francis R. Beattie

Calendar of Readings in the Westminster Standards organized by Dr. Joseph Pipa, Jr.

The Orthodox Presbyterian Church Book of Church Order

Gospel Worship by Jeremiah Burroughs 

With Reverance and Awe by D.G. Hart and John R. Muether

A Method for Prayer by Matthew Henry (updated)

If God Already Knows, Why Pray? by Doug Kelly

Knowing God by JI Packer

Redemption Accomplished and Applied by John Murray 

Heaven on Earth: Assurance in the Christian Life  by Thomas Brooks

The Holiness of God by R.C. Sproul

The Attributes of God A.W. Pink

Delighting in the Trinity: An Introduction to the Christian Faith by Michael Reeves

Institutes of the Christian Religion by John Calvin

A Faith to Live By:Understanding Christian Doctrine by Donald Macleod

The Christ of the Covenants by O. Palmer Robertson

Not Home Yet: How the Renewal of the Earth Fits into God’s Plan for the World by Ian Smith

The Mercy Ministry of the Church by Peter DeYoung (not available online)

The Ruling Elder by Samuel Miller 

The Shepherd Leader: Achieving Effective Shepherding in Your Church by Tim Whitmer

How Jesus Runs the Church by Guy Prentiss Waters

The Reformed Deacon: Interview with Author Cornelis Van Dam

The Ruling Elder by Samuel Miller

How People Change by Timothy Lane and Paul David Tripp

Speaking the Truth in Love by Powelson

Side by Side Ed Welch

When People are Big and God is Small by Ed Welch 

Heath Lambert

Puritan Evangelism by Joel Beeke

The Letters of John Newton

The Broken Home; Lessons in Sorrow by Benjamin M. Palmer

CCEF: Christian Counseling and Education Foundation


Are You Listening?

by Trish Duggan, Producer of The Reformed Deacon

It’s hard to believe it’s been over a year since the Committee on Diaconal Ministries started producing a podcast for deacons called, The Reformed Deacon. I really hope you’ve come to look forward to its release each first of the month. I have the privilege of being the podcast’s producer, (as well as an OP deacon’s wife) and it’s amazing for me to hear the breadth of wisdom within our denomination. We’ve got some incredible guys serving as the hands and feet of Christ, and I hope that is well represented in the podcast.

Also exciting is knowing who is listening! In addition to our North American following, we have listeners in Europe, Africa, Oceania, Asia and South America. We currently have just about 150 subscribers. We, of course, hope that will grow, so share an episode with a deacon-friend. I think you’ll agree, there’s really nothing out there like it. I’ve even heard that some in other reformed denominations are listening, too!

The CDM launched the podcast in November 2021 with an interview of a local deacon from Shiloh OPC in Raleigh, NC, Tim Hopper. That podcast has nearly 900 downloads—our most popular to date (don’t tell Tim!) Following close behind is “Church Safety in the 21st Century” with nearly 750 downloads and “Disabilities and the Church” at 522 downloads. If you haven’t listened to those yet, I hope their popularity will encourage you to. I can remember distinctly while recording interviews with OP elder Matt Butler and Pastor Stephen Tracey, thinking, “everyone should know this stuff!”

The goal of this podcast is to encourage deacons in their service to the local church, and we sincerely hope we are accomplishing that. The Committee on Diaconal Ministry’s plan for 2023 is to focus in on four areas: encouragement, practice, resources and doctrine. By breaking it down like this, we hope to give you well-rounded content that is useful in all aspects of your ministry.

I’m particularly excited about January’s episode. It’s a little different than our usual interview-style. Three deacons, with a collective near-60 years of experience, spend time talking through two different fictitious and difficult case studies involving walk-ins. One of the cases included, “A woman named Jane comes to the church. You’re the only person at the church setting up for a meeting that people will arrive for in an hour. She tells you her boyfriend is abusing her and is after her right now and she needs your help to keep her safe. Her boyfriend is probably only a couple minutes behind her, and she needs a place to hide out.” Do you know what would you do? Each panelist, using policies developed in their own diaconates, was able to propose some steps in showing the love of Christ. You won’t want to miss this one. We plan to release more Real World Cases in 2023. 

We are always looking for new and creative content and love suggestions, so please, if you are a year-long listener or you’ve just discovered the podcast, contact us:

We truly hope the podcast has been an encouragement to you and we pray that the Lord continues to bless it as a resource to all!