Insuring God’s glory
The beauty and grace of the worship service
The ministry of the ALTAR GUILD is one of the most rewarding and demanding of the servant-ministries at Holy Cross.
The Guild’s job is to care for all the artifacts that make our worship of God beautiful, reverent and inspiring – the fabrics which drape the altar and other areas, changed according to the seasons of the Church Year; the vestments worn by the priest and the assistants in worship; the various vessels used for Communion; the candles and flowers that add light and color to our worship. Its mandate is to insure that all of the ‘hardware’ pertaining to the worship of Almighty God is selected, used and cared for in a way that gives God glory, and honors the Sacramental acts which we perform in God’s name and presence.
Its work, when it is well done, is ‘invisible’, usually bringing no glory to those who do it. Precisely for that reason, however, it is also a ministry of witness, to our Lord’s own humble and loving service to others. Its service to those with whom it shares responsibility for worship is intricate and immediate. To the priest, whose vestments are laid out in perfect order for each service, they are a weekly reminder of our Lord’s command for Christians to imitate his own humility toward his friends. To the worshippers, who rejoice in the beauty and grace of the service, the work is pure gift, often taken for granted but essential for the liturgy (which literally means ‘the people’s work’) to express our devotion to God as we wish it to.
The Altar Guild’s tasks and working methods are many and specialized, and require training beyond the scope of a brief introduction. Volunteers will join a skilled and dedicated body of women and men who cherish their vocation and, in turn, are cherished by all those who benefit from it.
Holy Cross’s director, Deb Huck, is always glad to take new recruits through the learning process of this important ministry and provide the hands-on support and encouragement that leads to confidence and proficiency in the tasks.