The word liturgy comes from a Greek word meaning “public work.” Every liturgical celebration is an action of Christ the High Priest and of his Mystical Body, the Church. That’s why it requires the participation of the People of God in the work of God.
In every liturgy, worship is directed to God the Father, through the Son in the unity of the Holy Spirit. Through the liturgical celebrations of the Church, we participate in the Paschal Mystery of Christ, meaning the life, death and resurrection of Jesus.
Liturgy includes all seven sacraments, but also encompasses other liturgical rites of the Church such as The Liturgy of the Hours and Eucharistic Exposition.
Check the bulletin each week for a schedule of these ministries.
Altar servers assist the priest in the celebration of the Mass so the liturgy can be conducted with grace and reverence. They assist the celebrant at the chair and at the altar by lighting the candles, dressing the altar, carrying the processional cross, carrying the incense, holding the books and a variety of other tasks during the liturgy. They do this by performing their duties with honor and respect, reflecting the true presence of Christ at the Mass. Altar Servers may also assist the priest during other liturgies of worship and prayer.
Children in Grade 4 or older and adults are invited to become involved in this important ministry. Orientation classes and review classes are held at various times during the year. We welcome adults to volunteer as altar servers as well. Servers are needed for our eleven daily Masses as well as our five weekend Masses, weddings, funerals, Solemnities and other special occasions.
There is no more intimate moment in our lives than when we receive Our Lord in Holy Communion. It is there that He offers us everything: His body, blood, soul and divinity. In return, with love and gratitude, we offer Him everything that we are: our hearts, our minds, our bodies and our souls. This communion is what propels us to greater union with Him and urges us to the heights of holiness.
We are blessed to have a large parish with sizable attendance at our weekend masses. As a result, the priests of our parish have come to rely upon select individuals, who having been properly trained and prepared to assist in the distribution of Holy Communion.
As an extraordinary minister of Holy Communion, you are in the privileged role to be a part of that encounter between Christ and the individual. You are able to hold Him who created the cosmos, to handle Him who formed Adam from the earth, who was born in Bethlehem and now sits at the right hand of the Father.
Serving in this role entails thorough training and instruction, periodic re-education, yearly re-commissioning and meeting certain expectations and standards required by our diocese. To assist you in fulfilling your role with confidence and reverence, there will be educational sessions offered several times a year.
The ministry of lector is a very important role that reflects directly on how our parishioners and visitors view our parish, for it shows that we are concerned with the quality of our liturgies. This is true not only in our weekend liturgies, but also in our other liturgies. This includes Solemnities, Sunday and daily Masses, weddings, funerals and other special Masses.
Since the Mass is the public prayer of the Church, it is the privilege of the lector to pronounce this dialogue between God and his people to our gathered assembly. In the readings, as explained by the homily, God speaks to his people, opening up to them the mystery of redemption and salvation, and offering them spiritual nourishment. Christ himself is present in the midst of the faithful through his word.
A training session is provided at St. Elizabeth Seton at various times of the year for those who feel called to this ministry. Contact Roger Helmkamp at the parish office to join this ministry.
The ministry of ushers is the oldest lay ministry in the Catholic Church. The ushers of today have descended from a long line of people of God. The more immediate predecessor of today’s usher can be found in the clerical order of porter, instituted in the third century. During those times, it was the duty of the porters or ushers to guard the door of the church against any intruders, to ring the bells and open the church and sacristy.
While today’s ushers don’t ring bells, their primary duties and responsibilities include greeting and welcoming parishioners as they enter the church, helping them to find seats as needed, taking up the collection and wishing everyone a good day at the conclusion of the Eucharistic Celebration.
Men, women and high school youth are invited to serve as ministers of hospitality (ushers). Since ushers participate in an ecclesial (church) and liturgical ministry and are not simply functionaries, they are required to have training that brings depth, reverence and insight to this ministry. For more information or to become an usher please contact the parish office.
The Sacristans are a group of volunteers who take care of sacristy needs such as cleaning and maintaining altar vestments, linens, and vessels. They also help shape the liturgical environment throughout all our various worship spaces.
Contact: Roger Helmkamp