Altar server (from the Latin "ministrare") means "to serve", "assist". So, Altar server - a minister. They serve God when doing their best during the liturgy and make it beautiful. The word "Altar server" refers specifically to serve during Holy Mass, but also have assistants to other sacraments and rites.
Formerly, only men and boys could serve at the altar, but in many countries allowed local ordinaries to permit girls and women to do so.
Altar server is:
- An assistant of priest during the Mass and other liturgical rites according to the instructions of the Church. Specifically, Altar server assists the priest during preparation of gifts on the altar, and after the liturgy;
- The one who bears the signs. He bears the material that is necessary to perform the liturgy. These items have particular important significance for the liturgy, they are meant to indicate something to believers, point to another invisible reality.
- He must be a sign, because through his ministry shows that each liturgy is not only a matter of priests, but part of it has to take the whole parish;
- Service indicates that participation in the Liturgy - means not only listen and take a closer look, but to actively participate in what is happening.
Altar server may be guys who received already the Holy Communion.
With the deepening of their Christian life and entering the sacred liturgy boys gradually introduce into the service and task of Altar server. This has provided the appropriate formation of Altar server, which consists of the following steps:
- Candidate for Altar server;
- Altar server;
- Altar server of light;
At each stage we have a group of Altar server, which is at the appropriate level of formation. For each group is responsible animator. Animator is a senior Altar server that has attained the lecturer degree and has relevant experience in serving at the altar.