To be ordained

Mark Marmon is one of a growing number of pastors who serve congregations in exchange for little or no compensation.

JENNIFER REYNOLDS/The Daily News

HITCHCOCK — Hitchcock’s All Saints Episcopal Church, 10416 state Highway 6, will welcome the Rt. Rev. Charles Andrew Doyle, the Bishop of Texas, at 11 a.m. today. Doyle will preside over the ordination of the congregation’s new priest, Mark McCarter Marmon.

“The whole church is excited about Mark’s ordination to the priesthood,” Doyle said. “He has been preparing for quite some time and is gifted for ministry. He will make for a good leader, a faithful pastor, preacher and teacher and a good priest in the communities that call him to serve.”

Marmon has been serving at the church as an unpaid deacon-in-transition. Carol Barnwell, a spokesperson for the diocese, said deacons can choose between two separate paths in the Episcopal Church.

“They can be transitional, that is someone who has completed seminary in preparation to become a priest, or they can be ‘perpetual’ deacons who serve without pay to bring the concerns of the world to the church,” she said.

Marmon begin his path to the priesthood in 1974 and has been leading at All Saints for the last three years.

Marmon will make the move from deacon to priest, which will allow him to expand his role at the church, which has about 50 members.

“As a deacon, I had certain liturgical duties, but not the full responsibilities I will as head of the church,” he said. “Now, as the priest-in-charge or vicar, I will be allowed to fulfill my congregants’ liturgical lives by administering baptism, holy Eucharist and absolution.”

Marmon runs a fly-fishing business, which provides his income. He has been featured in the national media as an example of the growing movement of priests and deacons who are serving in small churches such as All Saints at their own expense.

Doyle invited the community to join the service to meet Marmon and get acquainted with the church.

The church can be reached at 409-986-5630.

Rick Cousins can be reached at rick.cousins@galvnews.com.

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