By Abigail Wu
His eyes flick about, filled with hope as he scans the rows neatly lined with people. His fingers intertwine and release as he waits. Mere seconds feel like an eternity until the pastor turns and shares the verdict of the congregational vote.
Senior Daniel Wassim is the youngest certified deacon at Bismarck’s First Presbyterian Church, a denomination of the Christian religion that has been in America since the early 1600s.
There are 1.9 million people in the U.S. who are members of Presbyterian Church U.S.A., a governing branch of the Presbyterian church. First Presbyterian shares many similar beliefs with other Christian churches.
“We’re one of the mainline churches, (such as) Lutheran, Methodist, Baptist etc.,” Richard Raum, interim pastor at Bismarck’s First Presbyterian said. “We share beliefs that God exists, God’s most perfect revelation is Christ, God has given us the Bible to learn about him, and God calls us into the community to glorify him.”
Wassim’s behavior and attitude that parallel the church’s Christian beliefs was noticed and he was allowed to begin the process of becoming a deacon. An elder or an active member of the church had asked if Wassim was interested in becoming a deacon. Wassim responded yes, and a congregational vote was held that determined his deaconship. Wassim was voted in by the church congregation at First Presbyterian and has been serving as a deacon since January. Deacons at First Presbyterian can be male or female.