Monday, January 28, 2013

Report from the Altar Guild

The Annual Meeting is coming up on February 3. Continuing last year's tradition, we're publishing reports as we receive them. Here's the report from the Altar Guild, submitted by Duane Palmer.

In 2012 the St. Catherine of Siena Altar Guild of The Episcopal Church of All Saints experienced another year of dedicated service and faithfulness by its members. An altar guild, described by some as those persons who take care of the "holy hardware", is probably a least-noticed ministry, and this is intentional. We work behind the scenes in order to provide support to the sacred ministers and in doing so create a time of worship that is seamless and well thought out. Perhaps these are lofty words, especially when it sometimes comes down to "how in the world did wax get there?" or "how did that linen end up over here?" But one of the joys that I have found over the years working on altar guilds is learning the spiritual significance of various articles, the order in which they are arranged, and how to care for them properly once they have been used in a service.

In 2013 we are looking for volunteers to join our teams. We have five teams, which means you would be serving every 5th Sunday, and of course there are always volunteer opportunities for special days that fall outside of a normal Sunday routine. If you've ever read the story of Martha and Mary in Luke 10:38-42, and felt that Martha got the raw end of the deal, perhaps you are a good fit for the altar guild.

Two things that I would ask of the general congregation, and by this I mean members, is that you return any unwanted bulletins to the west end of the nave where they can be gathered for recycling. As we at All Saints want to show our best possible appearance to visitors, I know you would like to help by returning your hymnals and BCPs to their proper slots, spine facing up. The altar guild workers have a great deal to do after Mass, and your efforts to help them mean your brothers and sisters in Christ won't have to stay longer than necessary.

On behalf of all the Altar Guild, I would like to thank the Church for all the opportunities to serve that continue to be presented to us. We hope and pray that we will continue to serve with joy and dedication in 2013 and in the years to come.

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