Altar Servers: Preparations before a Liturgy


Altar Servers: Preparations before a Liturgy
1.  Altar servers should be at the church no later than 15 minutes before the celebration is to begin.

2.  When you arrive, sign in on the “sign-in” sheet posted in the server closet (on the inside of the door.)

3.  Introduce yourself to the priest.  If he is a visiting priest, ask him:

  • if he has any special instructions.
  • if he has a specific way he wants the Roman Missal held.

4.  Put on your vestment(s) and make sure your hair is neatly combed and your hands are clean.  Long hair must be tied back (to avoid being accidentally caught on fire when lighting or extinguishing the candles.)
a.  You should choose an alb that is just above your ankles.
b.   Tie your cincture around your waist with a butterfly or square knot.

  • Green cinctures are used at all Masses during Ordinary Time.
  • White cinctures are used at funerals and on some feast days.
  • Red cinctures are used during…
    • Feasts of the Lord’s passion, Blood, and Cross
    • Feasts of the martyrs
    • Palm Sunday
    • Pentecost
  • Purple cinctures are used
    • Season of Advent
    • Season of Lent

Tie  cinctures around your waist, over the alb.  Do not tie the cincture over the over-garment.  It falls straight down.

5.  Put an altar server cross around your neck, but under the hood of the alb.

6.  Once dressed, start preparing the altar under the direction of the deacon.  The crucifer will provide guidance on where to deliver the vessels, when to light the candles, etc.

7.  When everything is ready,  wait quietly and reverently in the sacristy or at the back of the church until it is time for the ministers to pray before starting the entrance procession.