Altar Guild

A Ministry of Hospitality and Welcome

The Altar Guild is a devoted group of individuals who serve at the request of the rector. Before every worship service, they work with care behind the scenes to create a setting of beauty and order around the church altar, so that those coming to worship may experience a sense of welcome, joy, and peace as they enter the Sanctuary and take part in the Liturgy.

Here are just a few of the many preparations the Altar Guild makes before every worship service — ensuring decorative altar panels are installed to match the liturgical season, dressing the altar with the appropriate linens, arranging flowers or greens during the season of Lent, making sure candles and candleholders are in place and ready for lighting, noting the correct passage(s) for the day’s appointed readings in the Bible on the lectern, and putting hymn numbers up on the hymn board. They also make sure that vessels, vestments and linens are cleaned and stored once the worship service is over.

National Altar Guild Association

The National Altar Guild Association (NAGA) is a wonderful resource for anyone considering this ministry. There are articles sharing a variety of information from its history and practice, management and participation, to even hands-on “how to” instructions for creating garments. The following quote is taken from an article titled Barnabas: A Model for Altar Guild Members that captures the essence of this ministry:

The Rev. Canon C. K. Robertson, Ph.D. At the heart of all altar guild work is the mission to reach out and welcome folks through our care-filled preparation and our hospitality, to build more bridges than walls so that the stranger in our midst can dare to feel at home.

To learn more about the Altar Guild ministry, Contact Us
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