Serving as an older altar server


Hello all,

This question is mostly addressed to the Traditional Catholic community, but since it regards liturgy I figured this would be the best place to post it.

I’m a recent convert and have some into the church in an FSSP parish. Most of our altar servers are young boys or young men. However, our sacristan is an older man and serves a few Masses a week. Father has no problem training me to be an altar server. My question(s) are: 1. do any of you have experience serving for the first time as an older person and 2. what was the best way to memorize the server responses?

Thanks for your time!



Our parish has mostly older altar servers. The last 2 priest prefer that and every 1st Sunday of the month EVERY server, lector, EM, et al, are Knights of Columbus. Enjoy it VERY much!


After my grandfather retired, he would go to mass everyday . My grandmother had passed on at the time. My grandfathers house was across the street from the church. Grandpa was altar sever at 73 yrs. Age does not matter

Peace be with you


I first served Mass when I was 17; a majority of the altar servers are of the post tertiary education variety and well beyond in the traditional Mass I serve; a few are young and are in high school;


From an email sent by the principal server MC to all the altar servers at our church

taken from the book Minor Order:


  • Must have a sincere, generous, vigilant zeal for the honor and the service of the House of God.

  • [Out of zeal] will leave nothing undone in his efforts to make silence, recollection and prayer reign in the body of the Church as well as in the sanctuary; he will not hesitate … to banish distractions and disorder. [N.B. There’s a reason why sacristy and sanctuary have the roots for sacred and for holy in their name].

  • Must have a deep and sincere humility, for no disposition is more opposed to the character of Satan, inspires him with more aversion, and is more unbearable to him.

  • Should have devotion to the Holy Sacrifice through his zeal in serving the priest at ordinary Masses, and by his affection, recollection and piety in the performance of his duties at Solemn Masses.

  • Humble as the office may be in the eyes of the world, he may rest assured that it is far above his merits and that there is not an angel in heaven but envies him his lot.

  • Who is but little recollected, is a source of distraction to those assisting at Mass and destroys their pious feelings; whereas one that is pious, recollected, and fervent leads them to recollection and prayer.

  • Far from shunning the humblest duties, should prefer them and perform them with great love.

–What is more scandalous than to hear in the church, sometimes even in the sanctuary, ecclesiastics speaking in a loud voice, employees talking among themselves or with the faithful about the most profane things, musicians and chanters setting an example of carelessness, at the very time when they should be thinking only of singing the praises of God!


1.age has nothing to do with serving mass.
In the past we felt that young boys might be interested in the priesthood if they served .
Not sure of the results, yet it I see the logic behind this thinking.
2.Bring a book that has the latin responses and correct pronunciation with you as you serve. it is a lot to memorize prior to serving. Read the book as you serve.


Thanks for the responses everyone, they are very encouraging!

Do you know what book that quote in the email was from?


I came into the Church in 2005 at the age of 58. A couple years later I was joking with Father that as a late-in-life convert, I had missed out on being al altar boy. One thing led to another, and before I knew it, I was serving at weekday Masses on those days when the deacon was not there (our pastor at that time had very bad knees and feet, and the help was appreciated). Deacon Mike trained me before my first gig.

Since then we have a new pastor, and two men in the permanent deacon training program; one of them takes Deacon Mike’s place when he’s not there, so I haven’t served in a couple years. There was an altar server training program last fall. Adults were invited, and I went through it. It was said that they were going to schedule some Sunday Masses with all adult servers, but they haven’t done it. I miss it.


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