National Deacon Assembly 2022

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Mgr. Paul McPartlan - ‘The Diaconate: meaning, theology, and value for today’ 

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Mgr. Paul McPartlan is a priest of the Archdiocese of Westminster (UK) and Carl J. Peter Professor of Systematic Theology and Ecumenism at The Catholic University of America (CUA). He has written on the diaconate and was closely involved in the production of the Directory of Formation for the Diaconate in England & Wales in 2010.

Paul was born in Newcastle upon Tyne and graduated from Cambridge in Mathematics in 1978. Having studied Philosophy and Theology at the Pontifical Gregorian University in Rome, he was ordained a priest by Cardinal Basil Hume in 1984. He gained his doctorate from Oxford, and then served for four years in a London parish. After holding a postdoctoral research fellowship at St. Edmund's College, Cambridge, from 1993-1995, he was appointed to the faculty of Heythrop College in the University of London, where he taught systematic theology for ten years before coming to CUA in 2005. He served for two terms on the International Theological Commission (2004-2009, 2009-2014).

A member of the International Commission for Theological Dialogue between the Roman Catholic Church and the Orthodox Church since 2005, he has participated in international Anglican-Roman Catholic and Roman Catholic-Methodist dialogue, also. He was appointed as a papal chaplain by Pope Benedict XVI in 2008, and served as Acting Dean of the School of Theology and Religious Studies at CUA in 2014-2019.


Deacon Gerald Dupont - ‘Global development of the Diaconate since Vatican II’.

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Deacon Gerald DuPont of the Galveston-Houston archdiocese, Texas, is the first president of the International Diaconate Centre (IDC) from the United States.

Gerald went to Louisiana State University where he majored in petroleum engineering and chemical engineering. He then worked for Union of California which eventually took him to Houston, Texas. He holds a Masters of Scripture, a Masters of Systematic Theology and a Doctorate of Ministry. Gerald has taught at the seminary at the University of St Thomas, Houston and theology at the Oblate School of Theology at San Antonio. He served for 13 years as the director of the permanent diaconate in Galveston-Houston.

Gerald has been chief consultant on the permanent diaconate to the USCCB (United States Conference of Catholic Bishops) and has been on the board of the National Association of Deacon Directors (NADD) in the USA where he served as a regional representative for six years and chair for four years.

Gerald has been involved in NADD major projects including the national congress celebrating the 50 years of the restoration of the permanent diaconate in the United States, a rewrite of the national directory for deacons, a national study on the diaconate and a process for assessing those who are applying for the diaconate.


Deacon John Morrill - ‘A restored Diaconate or a new Diaconate: a historian’s perspective’. 

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Deacon John Morrill is emeritus Professor of History at Cambridge who specialises in the political, religious, social, and cultural history of early-modern Britain from 1500 to 1750, especially the English Civil War.

He is best known for his scholarship on Early Modern Politics and his unique county studies approach which he developed at Cambridge. In 1996, Morrill was ordained as a deacon for the Diocese of East Anglia, England. He has held several senior positions in the Diocese (e.g. Lourdes Pilgrimage Diocesan Director, Chair of the Commission for Evangelisation and Assistant Director for Diaconal Formation) and until recently taught Church History and Pastoral Theology for the Southern Deacon Formation programme in England.