by Ruth Clara Viegas
KUWAIT, NOV 24, 2016: Fifty eight boys were inducted as new altar servers and one hundred and thirty six boys renewed their pledge to continue in the ministry at St Therese parish, Kuwait on November 17.
After receiving their First Holy Communion in May 2016, the parish announced the registration for the new Altar servers. The boys that had registered were then trained by coordinators, Pascal Fernandes and James Sequeira, who charted out a schedule for eleven Saturdays. They were assisted by four senior altar servers since September.
Ninety per cent attendance was mandatory for the altar servers to be inducted. The boys received a hands-on training on how to serve at the altar and were given an opportunity to get acquainted with the sacred liturgical books and articles used for the Holy Mass.
A written test was conducted to check the knowledge of the altar servers with regards to the articles used for the liturgy. Out of the total number registered, only 58 boys qualified to join the Altar Servers ministry.
On November 17, Father Derek Misquitta celebrated Holy Mass and Father Blany Pinto, Father Johnson Nedumpurath were concelebrants at a well-attended induction. In the introduction, Father Misquitta referred to St. John Berchmans, the patron of altar servers. He also shared his personal experience as an altar server, of how he was inspired to be a priest.
In his homily, Father Pinto made the altar boys aware that it is God who has called them to serve at the altar. He asked them to be open to God's calling to be a priest or a religious. The boys took their pledge to commit themselves to the altar server's ministry while the existing altar servers renewed their pledge.
Towards the end of Holy Mass, certificates were distributed to the new boys. Trophies and certificates were awarded to the three best altar servers (three juniors and three seniors) for the year September 2015 – August 2016.
"It was worth sending my son for the weekly training. He has learnt a lot and is now ready to serve at Holy Mass," Roselyn D'cruz, a parent, said.
"I have not seen such a grand ceremony of inducting new altar servers in any parish till date. Even the invitation card that we received was so artistic that we want to preserve it and cherish the memories," Alex D'souza, another parent, added.