Sheila Grove

Father Michael Polinek blesses altar servers at the
Serra Club recognition Mass. 
                  Contributed Photo/ Regina McGrail

OIL CITY -- When Pope Francis met with a group of more than 70,000 altar servers in St. Peter’s Square in 2018, he told them, “You can be apostles, capable of

drawing others to Jesus.” (Vatican News 7/31/2018) The pope encouraged them to spend time knowing and loving Jesus through prayer, Mass, Gospel reading and through the poor.

According to the Serra Club, a group of men and women who foster and promote vocations to the priesthood and religious life, 80 percent of priests have been altar servers. The Erie chapter assists Father Polinek and the Diocesan Vocations Office in recognizing the service of these boys and girls to let them know that they are part of an essential ministry in the church.   

Being an altar server is an important way for young people to serve the church. As ministers to the altar, servers become familiar with the Mass and engage with other liturgical ministers,” says Dennis Deiner, vice president of the Vocation Committee and current president of the Serra Club of Erie.This kind of service is an important way for youth to begin to recognize their baptismal call to discipleship.