Bishop Alan Scarfe at the 168th Annual Convention of the Episcopal Diocese of Iowa, paying tribute to Susanne Watson Epting:
...has been a leader within this diocese for decades, promoting baptismal ministry and the fullness and distinctiveness of the diaconal order. She was an original visionary on what the diocese could do with a place strategically placed like Old Brick [on the campus of the University of Iowa] and is now seeing the fruit of that vision as the Beloved Community Initiative [of which she is co-founder] develops in that very place. God's Spirit has been at work through Her servant in a profoundly prophetic and timely way. Susanne says that she is now officially retired. No one believes her. You will never stop serving in God's Name. And so we thank God for you, Susanne, at this time.
(Susanne’s husband Bishop Chris Epting was a keynote speaker at the Chicago World Assembly in 2017)
Unexpected Consequences: The Diaconate Renewed by Susanne Watson Epting
"Times change, and the Order of Deacons in the Episcopal Church has not remained static. While the book seeks to update contemporary knowledge about deacons, it also shows how the diaconate may be well positioned to lead the church into change that cuts across governance, formation, and ministry. While the institutional church struggles with its structure and purpose, working to change its reality and perception, the book suggests that there are diaconal leaders who have been working all along for this kind of change. The book chronicles ways in which one church order has grown, matured, adapted, adjusted, and is as effective as it is because of its dynamic nature. It is hoped that other orders might learn from the importance of being adaptable, contextual, and baptismal, while highlighting the primary lens deacons look through as they seek to fulfill what the church has called them to do."