When my mother, brother and I came into the church ten years ago I was so excited to get started. I immediately wanted to begin my first communion classes and be more involved in the church.
When the time arrived I was excited to be an altar server! I can still remember my first time altar serving 9 years ago! And while my years of altar serving on a regular basis may be over that will not stop me from being involved in the church. I’ve started serving as an extraordinary minister and sacristan and even dabbled in face painting during special occasions.
Being so involved when I was younger made it so much easier for me to keep being involved in the church community.
My parents have always been involved in the church. My dad being in the choir and my mom was a WCC (Whole Community Catechesis) teacher at one point and now assists with liturgical laundry. Growing up in a family that was so active in the church made it easy for me to feel welcome in the parish. Now, it is easy for me to feel welcome in participating in the Mass because I started so young and just became more familiar with the Mass and how it works.
During my time as an altar server I’ve had the humbling experience of serving during so many different Masses. I’ve served with the Bishop Emeritus during a confirmation, and Bishop Rice at Fr. Mike McDevitt’s retirement Mass. I’ve solved cases of missing purificators and even held a microphone during a slight dilemma on Easter Sunday. Every situation I faced has helped me “go with the flow” and just being in this ministry has helped me grow as a person. I’ve led many “altar server camps” to teach new altar servers what it’s like to be an altar server in our parish. I have even gone to a diocesan ministry fair to share the game changing training technique we use for our altar servers now when they “shadow” an experienced altar server to get more comfortable with altar serving.
My many years of being involved in the parish has really helped me understand my faith better. Not only in the sense that I understand why we do certain things in the Mass and why all roles are important, but also because it helps me serve a community that loves the Lord just like I do. It’s helped me realize that we are all instruments of the Lord and we are all here to serve Him, even in the small times like holding a book of prayers for the priest.
I am so thankful for everyone involved in the church, big and small, because they truly do help keep this church alive and thriving. Every small contribution, be it your time, talent or treasure is so beneficial to this fast growing church. I have loved being a part of this wonderful parish and growing up alongside it.
- Kaitlyn Rispoli