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Thornbury Parish



The serving team at St Mary's assists at the Parish Communion on Sundays and at other special services.  Serving is a small part of our lives as Christians but is one way in which we can fulfil our calling to serve God and His Church, and we enjoy making a contribution to communal worship in our parish. We are always glad to welcome new members to the team, from the age of seven upwards.  No prior knowledge or experience is necessary - full training is provided.  All that is required is enthusiasm.

he serving team is coordinated by Valerie Murray.  If you would be interested in joining our team, please contact Mrs Murray on 01454 416444.


What is serving?

The role of the servers is to help or "serve" the clergy to enable them to focus on leading the worship of the congregation.  The servers also play a role in assisting the congregation to worship; for example, the cross carried in procession provides a focus for the congregation, a visual reminder of Christ, whom we have gathered to praise.  Sometimes part of the servers' task is to help create a "prayerful" atmosphere, to help people to feel close to God and to speak to Him in prayer. There is really nothing "special" about servers: they are there to fulfil quite a practical need.  The Eucharist can in one sense be seen as a fellowship meal, where Christians gather together to remember Christ's sacrifice of Himself upon the cross.  Just as the host and guests at a formal dinner would be waited on, so the servers help to prepare the Altar table for others to come and share the meal.

What do servers get out of it?

Many servers appreciate the opportunity to be able to play an active role in the worship of Christ: one is able to express one's service of Him through serving at His table.  Some find that taking an active involvement in worship helps them in their own personal devotions and plays a role in their Christian growth.  And, at the end of the day, it's also quite good fun!

Debunking the Myths

I don't want to stand out and feel as though everyone is watching me.

You needn't worry - the congregation are rarely watching the servers.  The servers' role is to help the service to go smoothly whilst themselves remaining inconspicuous.  The congregation are aware that they are there, but are unlikely to be paying much attention to them; there are more important things to focus on than the servers.

What if I get it wrong?

Even the experienced servers make mistakes - lots of them!  The congregation (and, half the time, the clergy) aren't aware exactly what the servers are supposed to be doing, so it's easy to make a mistake look as if it was meant to happen.  Servers have a few tricks for covering up faux pas!

Young Servers