Altar Guild Mission
Members of the Altar Guild are communicant members of the congregation, regular in worship attendance, willing to learn and eager to give priority to the use of their time to the Guild.
The Altar Guild is entrusted with the privilege of preparing the chancel and its furnishings for corporate worship. The Altar Guild is concerned with the things of worship - the care and placement of furnishings appointments, and ornaments used in worship. The overall goal of the Altar guild is to see that the worship space is kept beautiful and in good order, both to glorify God and to provide a setting which enables the congregation to worship in a meaningful way.
Members of the Altar Guild are servants of the liturgy that is, care takers of the church's worship life. It is a high privilege to care for the things which symbolize God's love and presence. 1
Members of the Altar Guild must know not only what to do, but also why. History and theology are involved as members learn about the development of the worship space, the church year, and the liturgy. The background and meaning of worship appointments and practices, symbolism and colors are taught.
Christmas is the festive celebration of the Nativity or our Lord, the Word made flesh. This celebration of the incarnation lasts for twelve days - from Christmas through Epiphany Eve.
"For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord". Luke 2:11
The first day if Holy Week is the Sunday of the Passion, also known as Palm Sunday. The mood of this day is a mixture of triumph and tragedy. We observe both Christ's triumphant entry into Jerusalem as well as his death on the cross.
Maundy Thursday recalls Jesus' example of loving service and his institution of the eucharist during the Last Supper in the upper room. The name of the day is from the Latin word mandatum, which means command. It refers to Jesus' words at the Last Supper, "I give you a new commandment, that you love one another. Just as I have loved you, you should love one another" (John 13:34)
Paraments for Maundy Thursday are scarlet or white. Holy Communion is always celebrated on Maundy Thursday.
At the conclusion of the Maundy Thursday liturgy, the altar is stripped in preparation for the austerity of Good Friday, and as a symbolic remembrance of Christ's humiliation by the soldiers.
Maundy Thursday is the first day of the Tridum, the three days of intense observance of the paschal mystery. Beginning with Maundy Thursday evening, the Tridum concludes Easter Evening. It is the most sacred and important time of the entire church year.
He is Risen!!!
The day of Pentecost occurs fifty days after Easter. It celebrates the time when the Holy Spirit descended to the believers gathered in Jerusalem. It is, therefore, a day when decorations and ceremonies should be reminders of the Spirit.
Bright red paraments are used on the Day of Pentecost, reminders of the fire of the Spirit.
The Holy Trinity
This festival occurs on the First Sunday after Pentecost, celebrating the doctrine of the Trinity, one God in three persons.
The paraments are white.
The Epiphany Season
The first and last Sundays after Epiphany are festivals. the second through the eight Sundays after the Epiphany use green paraments as a symbol of our growth in knowing Jesus as God's Son and the Savior of the whole world and all its people.
Celebrated on the last Sunday in October, Reformation Sunday commemorates the Protestant Reformation as well as Martin Luther, who nailed his 95 Theses to the door of Castle Church in Wittenberg, Germany, on October 31, 1517, the eve of All Saints' Day.
1 Stauffer, S. Anita. Altar Guild and Sacristy Handbook [Fourth Revised Edition]. Augsburg Fortress. 2014
The Altar Guild is looking for additional members. If you know of someone who is interested, please speak to a Guild Member.
Shirley Johnson, consultant
Welcoming All to Share God's Grace and Love.