The Altar Server Ministry at the Christ the King RC Church, Les Efforts, San Fernando community has a team of 32 altar servers who assist the clergy at Mass on Saturday evenings at 5 p.m. and Sunday mornings at 7.30 a.m. They range from the ages of 8 to 22 years and offer their young hands, minds and hearts in eager service of the Church.
Every year since 2013, the altar servers take time during the July/August vacation to contemplate the importance of their mission. Additionally, the coordinators of the retreat use this opportunity to reward their dedicated altar servers for their unstinting service throughout the church year.
This year 22 altar servers, accompanied by parents/guardians and family members (27 in total), spent the July 19–21 weekend in Tobago. Under the direction of Debra Roget-Sutherland and Christine Koylass, coordinators of this vibrant ministry, altar servers spent time getting to know each other better.
Daily prayers and gospel reflections led by the altar servers set the atmosphere of fellowship and comradery. As the weekend progressed, different age groups came together to dine, look at movies, play board games, enjoy the pool and the overall relaxing ambience at TECU Coral Reef Resort.
Parents and children laughed, talked and danced together as all cares were forgotten. The anticipated boat ride to the turquoise waters of the Nylon Pool was certainly unforgettable.
The group attended Holy Mass at St Joseph’s RC Church, Scarborough on Saturday evening. Tobago hospitality was second to none as Msgr Esau Joseph and parishioners warmly welcomed them.
The weekend passed too quickly as all the altar servers expressed the desire to remain in the euphoria created by the spirit of friendship.
Reflecting on the retreat, the youths learnt through this experience what it means to be brothers and sisters in Christ. The underlying, unspoken message arising out of the weekend was our call to be hospitable.
Does our outward appearance encourage others to desire to serve Christ as we do? Are we good examples of Christ within our church community? Hospitality means inclusion of everyone in activities; it is a smile, an encouraging word, the willingness to listen and share in another’s story.
The weekend renewed and inspired the Christ the King altar server family. We pray that this retreat will bear fruit as we strive to truly be a hospitable church.