What Does A Sacristan Do?

Sacristans care for and put in place the items needed so that worshipers get to fully participate in the Eucharistic celebration.

The work of a sacristan is directed by the clergy and includes:

  • The preparation for each Mass both daily and on Sunday including those special days during our liturgical year like Ash Wednesday, the Triduum, Easter and Christmas.
  • Arranging and marking of all books used during a Mass or Special Liturgy including the Sacramentary, the Book of the Chair, the Book of Gospels, the Lectionary and any other documents needed.
  • Vestment preparation for Priest, Deacons and Altar Servers
  • Preparing and laying out of all Chalices, cruets, linens, towels, oils, crosses and candles, etc. as needed for the Liturgy to be celebrated

Then there is the work that takes place outside of Mass preparation:

  • Cleaning and making sure all the vessels, vestments, furnishings, etc. are in good condition and available.
  • Maintaining a supply of host and wine.
  • Cleaning of the Altar cloths and laundering of the purificators and hand towels (a Ministry of the Sacristans)
  • Seasonal tasks include the Blessing of the Hay during Advent, and many tasks throughout Holy Week including behind the scene assistance when OCIA candidates are received into the Church.

Can Anyone Be A Sacristan?

Absolutely! There are many ways that you can become involved. Under the direction of our Head Sacristan, there are weekend Sacristans, Funeral Sacristans, Seasonal Assistants and Laundry Assistants. Training is available and the rewards are great!