In Paul Turner's Blog by Paul Turner

Q:  New deacon here. Read over instructions in Mass w/ Deacon. Some things not clear. 

  1. Does the deacon incense or the priest?
  2. Does the deacon lead the penitential rite except for absolution?
  3. Does the deacon receive the gifts?
  4. Where can I find a clear explanation of the Deacon’s role in the liturgy, should there be other questions?



  1. A deacon may incense the priest.
  2. He may lead the first or third forms of the penitential act, though in practice most deacons just lead the third form. Still, even a cantor can lead the third form.
  3. A deacon or a priest may receive the gifts (GIRM 73, 178).
  4. Check my book Let Us Pray . Or LTP’s Guide for Deacons, to which I also contributed.