Ministry Spotlight: Serving on Sunday

Editors Note:  Ministry Spotlight, written by Epiphany vestry member and professional journalist Christopher Johnson is a monthly article focusing on the people and ministries of Epiphany.

By Chris Johnson

From the altar setup to the readings and prayers, there is a lot of work that goes into each and every church service. Here is a look inside those ministries that help keep the services running smoothly.


Acolytes are the young people of the congregation (6th – 12th grade) who assist with the worship service. They serve as examples for the congregation as well as assisting the clergy and Lay Eucharistic Ministers. Under the direction of the Verger, Acolytes participate in all phases of the rites and ceremonies of the Church. Serving as an Acolyte provides them the opportunity to act as a role model, learn church traditions and to actively participate in services in a special and memorable way.

The Torch bearers accompany the cross in the procession on each side. They also collect the offertory plates and gives them to the finance officers for counting.

The Crucifer is appointed to carry the church’s processional cross during processions at the beginning and end of the service. They also carry the cross out to the middle of the congregation during the Gospel reading.

The Head Server helps the Deacon set the table for Communion and assists the Verger during the distribution of Communion.

Any parents with children interested in joining this great ministry are encouraged to contact Fr. Michael.

Altar Guild

Altar Guild work goes on quietly behind the scenes. In general terms, it is the duty of the Altar Guild to prepare all things necessary for the celebration of the Eucharist or any of the other sacraments and offices of the Church. The Altar Guild fulfills a special role supporting the rector in making the worship life of the parish run smoothly.

Talent and know-how are useful attributes, but loyalty and commitment are indispensable.

Working in teams, Altar Guild members prepare the altar and the sanctuary for worship and prayer before every service. Their duties include making sure the altar is properly set for the Eucharist with the appropriate linens, vessels and elements.   They are responsible for cleanup of these items after the Eucharist, following a strict protocol in handling the consecrated items. They also decorate the Church for special seasons throughout the year.

The Altar Guild provides an excellent opportunity for those who want to assist in the worship service, but might not feel comfortable being in the limelight.

Confirmed members of Epiphany, both men and women, are eligible to serve, with the Rector’s approval.  If you are interested, please contact Margaret Stromberg.

Lay Eucharistic Ministers

Lay Eucharistic Ministers help lead the congregation in prayers and the Psalm while also assisting the ministers during the celebration of the Eucharist. They help administer communion to the congregation. Lay Eucharistic Ministers also process in and out after the choir, priests and acolytes.

Interested in becoming a chalicer? Contact Mark Oliphant.

Lay Readers

Lay readers are members of the congregation who read the first or second Bible readings during Sunday worship. Selections come from the lectionary, which provides readings connected to each other and appropriate for the particular season of the church year. This is a great opportunity to improve your Bible reading skills or brush up on difficult words from Berodachbaladan to Nebuchadnezzar.

Those interested in becoming a lay reader should contact Jim Murphy.

Other “Ministry Spotlight” Articles

Music Ministry

Women’s Ministry

Men’s Ministry


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