Being an altar server is a sacred privilege and an exceptional responsibility. The Altar Server guidelines outline the policies for altar servers, and the expectations of you and how we serve Mass here at St Monica.
Young people have been serving Mass from the earliest centuries. They have helped to get things ready: lighting candles, carrying the books used at Mass and preparing the altar. Of utmost importance, however, is not really the things they do but the example they give.
More than anything else, the server is a prayer leader. Servers help people to pray. So, servers must ask themselves, "What is Prayer?"
To begin with, prayer is listening, listening to God. During the Mass, there's much to be listened to. There's music, the prayers, the responses, and especially there are the words of Scripture. All the things servers do during Mass cannot be a distraction to their listening. Remember, the server is part of the celebration. The server is not like a waiter in a restaurant who stands off to the side and only helps out occasionally. A waiter is not usually part of the dinner celebration. Still, the server is - the server is a part of the ceremony, listening all the time. This is one way you pray: by listening.
Another part of prayer is, of course, responding. At Mass, the community responds in prayer and song. In our prayers and songs, praise and thanks are given to God for all the great things He has done. So, unless you are doing something that makes it impossible, you should be praying and singing whenever it is called for.
People will see you participating in your listening, praying, and singing. This will help them feel more comfortable about praying and singing themselves. This is your first leadership job: to be a prayer leader.
People are counting on you. First, the priest depends on you. He needs to know that you will be there on time. He needs to know that you are prepared. You help him a great deal to ensure that things go smoothly. Also, remember that the congregation counts on you. Without you, an essential part of payer leadership is missing. Without you, things can get sloppy. A good server keeps things going smoothly.
Remember, be responsible. And be calm. You have been called to serve. St Monica, is grateful that you have responded to this call with a real sense of dedication to service.
There are a few things you need to do to be an altar server at St Monica.
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