Altar Serving During Liturgy of the Eucharist (Roman Rite)


#1

Hello, I’m a regular altar server at my parish and I’m having troubles remembering which pages to turn for the priest during the Liturgy of the Eucharist. :confused:

I’m hoping someone can provide me a clear understanding which pages to turn for the priest. The missal used is the recently “released” or “updated” Roman Missal.

If I remember correctly I am to be beside the priest after the Presentation of the Gifts.

I hope I am not confusing anyone :o,
PAX
Jeffrey


#2

Ask your priest. An ordinary altar server doesn’t normally turn the pages for the priest. He either turns them himself or the deacon does it.

If your priest has asked you to do this and you don’t remember what you are supposed to do, then you need to go back to him for more training.


#3

Don't they mark the pages with the ribbons?


#4

[quote="Mrs_Sally, post:2, topic:308465"]
Ask your priest. An ordinary altar server doesn't normally turn the pages for the priest. He either turns them himself or the deacon does it.

.

[/quote]

FYI, in our parish, the altar boys turn the pages for the priest, just as the OP noted.

The boys generally have the text memorized to the extent that they know the queues.

So yes, it is one of the most training intensive tasks that they do.

Jeff, talk to your pastor about bookmarking the pages, and then giving you clues as to when to get up and turn the pages, a tap of the foot for example.

And yes, generally, the altar server is beside the priest to assist in the reception of the gifts. In some parishes, the altar server will go down to the table where the gifts are stored and 'escort' the people who are carring the gifts forward. The altar server(s) will then take their place next to the priest for the reception of the gifts.

The next task is to generally hold and provide the cruets of wine and water to the priest, and then to pour the water for the lavabo ( washing of the hands).


#5

[quote="JeffRFitz, post:1, topic:308465"]
I'm hoping someone can provide me a clear understanding which pages to turn for the priest. The missal used is the recently "released" or "updated" Roman Missal.

If I remember correctly I am to be beside the priest after the Presentation of the Gifts.

[/quote]

I don't know if the American Missal has tabs like the Canadian one, but after the preparation you turn to the 2nd one ("Blessed are you, Lord God..."). That lasts until the "Pray brethren, that my sacrifice...".
Next is the prayer over the gifts (Proper of Seasons at the front, unless it's a saint and it's in the Proper of Saints/Commons). There should be a ribbon for it.
Next is the preface (which is after the Proper of Seasons if I remember right, before the Ordinary). There should be a ribbon here. The "Holy Holy" is sung.
Eucharistic Prayer in next. In our edition, 1-4 have tabs that can be flipped to. Generally they are just prayed from start to finish in the same section (*EP1 has some differences based on the season or feast day).
After the Doxology, it's the Lord's Prayer (which I believe has another tab in our edition), and the Ordinary follows that until communion.

[quote="ConstantineTG, post:3, topic:308465"]
Don't they mark the pages with the ribbons?

[/quote]

I agree with this. Like I said, the Canadian one has tabs and plenty of ribbons (an excessive number even, probably to overcompensate for the fact that the old one had fewer ribbons and no tabs).

If they aren't using ribbons, then they should be, it's why they're there. Mass is not suppose to be a game or test of "find the right page". That's why we have an Ordo book that tells us what pages to use for everyday (and suggestions during Ordinary Time) so that there's no guesswork involved.

[quote="Mrs_Sally, post:2, topic:308465"]
An ordinary altar server doesn't normally turn the pages for the priest. He either turns them himself or the deacon does it.

[/quote]

This is exactly how we do it in my Seminary. The deacon handles the pages, and if there is none then it's the priest's job. The altar servers sit off to the side.

Our Cathedral recently changed to this too. The server use to flip the pages, but now the server stands or kneels off to the side (mirroring what the congregation is doing). The College chapel I use to regularly attend (and altar served at) never had the server flip pages, it was always the priest. Our bishop almost always has an MC (who's a priest or deacon) to fulfill that part.

I would actually say that for all I've seen, an altar server flipping pages seems to be an oddity or exception rather than the rule, at least around here.


#6

[quote="Brendan, post:4, topic:308465"]
FYI, in our parish, the altar boys turn the pages for the priest, just as the OP noted.

The boys generally have the text memorized to the extent that they know the queues.

So yes, it is one of the most training intensive tasks that they do.

Jeff, talk to your pastor about bookmarking the pages, and then giving you clues as to when to get up and turn the pages, a tap of the foot for example.

And yes, generally, the altar server is beside the priest to assist in the reception of the gifts. In some parishes, the altar server will go down to the table where the gifts are stored and 'escort' the people who are carring the gifts forward. The altar server(s) will then take their place next to the priest for the reception of the gifts.

The next task is to generally hold and provide the cruets of wine and water to the priest, and then to pour the water for the lavabo ( washing of the hands).

[/quote]

You've mentioned this before. Does your parish have a deacon? I know you have had several vocations.

Our altar servers do all the "fetching and carrying" for the priest and handle the processional crucifix, the candles, and the incense. But no page turning. ;)


#7

[quote="Mrs_Sally, post:6, topic:308465"]
You've mentioned this before. Does your parish have a deacon? I know you have had several vocations.

[/quote]

We have two deacons. But they are not present at all the Masses, altar boys are

Our altar servers do all the "fetching and carrying" for the priest and handle the processional crucifix, the candles, and the incense. But no page turning. ;)

Our do lots, but then, we have lots. Our pastor runs the altar boy program like a vocational program, to give them an good look at life as a priest, so they can make an informed and open choice.

So every boy, 5-18 in our parish is an altar boy, and (like a priest) if a boy is present, he serves. There is no assigned schedule.

At our main Sunday Masses we have 70+ altar boys serving. Most just carry swing torches, but there is offentory duty, older boys will do the Readings (so they are experienced and comfortable being reading in public), patens etc.. The task of turning the pages is called, surprisingly enough, 'Pages'. :)

And yes, we tend to have 1-2 men from our parish ordained each year. About half to the diocesan priesthood, others to religous life.


#8

[quote="Brendan, post:7, topic:308465"]
And yes, we tend to have 1-2 men from our parish ordained each year. About half to the diocesan priesthood, others to religous life.

[/quote]

not a surprise.


#9

It seems to me that:

If a deacon is present, he turns the page.
If a deacon is not present and the Mass is celebrated in a solemn or "solemn" way, a server or the priest turns the page.
If a deacon is not present and the Mass is not celebrated in a solemn or "solemn" way, the priest turns the page.

Although not a rule, this is the format I would follow.


#10

[quote="YoungTradCath, post:9, topic:308465"]
It seems to me that:

If a deacon is present, he turns the page.
If a deacon is not present and the Mass is celebrated in a solemn or "solemn" way, a server or the priest turns the page.
If a deacon is not present and the Mass is not celebrated in a solemn or "solemn" way, the priest turns the page.

Although not a rule, this is the format I would follow.

[/quote]

sounds fairly reasonable. It would also follow that if there is a designated Master of Ceremonies, he would be the one to do it, if possible.


#11

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