Acolyte Guidelines

Thank you for your willingness to serve as an acolyte for our worship services. Your role is a very important one, and your participation is greatly appreciated. There are several parts of the service in which you will participate, including lighting and extinguishing the candles, assisting with the offering, assisting with communion & assisting with baptisms. Below are guidelines for the duties that are your responsibility. There will be several opportunities for acolyte training during the Sunday School hour. Make it a point to attend these sessions. A video will also be prepared demonstrating candle lighting & extinguishing procedures.

NOTE: Please dress appropriately for worship service, as you are representing your congregation. If you are an acolyte at the 10:00 am service, arrive at least ten minutes before the service so that you will have time to put on an acolyte robe before your duties begin.


Lighting the candles
Five minutes before the service, go to the choir loft area and remove one of the candle lighters. Carefully light the wick and reverently carry the lighter to the front of the altar. Bow, light the candle on the right, then the left of the altar. Bow before the altar and walk to the candles on the right back wall. Light them from the center outward. Walk back to the center in front of the altar. Bow, then walk to the candles on the left back wall and light them from the center outward. Return to the center in front of the altar, bow, extinguish the lighter flame and be seated in a chair to the left of the altar. When there is a baptism, light the Paschal Candle (by the baptismal font) after lighting the other candles. During Advent, you will receive instructions from the pastor regarding lighting the Advent wreath candles.

Extinguishing the candles
As soon as the organist begins playing the closing hymn, take the candle lighter to the center front of the altar, bow and light the candle lighter using the left altar candle. Walk to the left back wall candles and extinguish them from the outside inward. Walk to the front center of the altar, bow and then proceed to the right wall and extinguish the candles from the outside inward. Then walk to the front of the altar, extinguish the left altar candle, then the right. Bow to the altar and carry the lit candle holder to the choir loft, extinguish it, hang it and return to your seat. Follow the pastor out down the center aisle. If there is a baptism, extinguish the Paschal Candle after the altar candles. Then return the candle holder as above and follow the pastor out. 

Assisting with communion
When communion begins, present yourself before the altar with the other communion assistants and receive a blessing, or communion, if you are eligible. Your duty during communion is to stand behind those administering communion and supply them with full wine trays when they become depleted. When the assistant signals you for a full tray, walk to the altar, lift the top wine tray and take is to the person distributing communion. Take the empty tray to the room to the left of the altar and return to your position.

Assisting with the offering
After the sharing of the peace, walk to the corner to the left of the altar and retrieve the large plate containing the four offering plates. Carry the plates to the first step in front of the altar and present them to the ushers as they come down the aisle. The ushers will take the four plates and proceed with the collection of the offering. Stay in that position until the collection of the offering is complete. An usher will bring the plates down the aisle, where he will place them in the large plate you are holding. Turn around, walk to the center front of the altar and raise the plates to present them to the Lord. Then walk to the left of the altar and return the plates.

Assisting with baptism
The pastor will give you instructions on how you will assist him with baptism.



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