Servers: Assistant Server, Acolyte, Crucifier, Server and Head Server

These instructions are written up to outline the roles of Servers at St. Stephen’s.

All individuals should be vested and prepared for the service five minutes before the service is to start (ex 9:55 am). This includes being robed, light candles, have a bulletin, set up any chairs that are needed and find pages in the Book of Alternative Services (BAS) and hymns in the book of Common Praise. Though everyone is responsible for these duties, the most senior member should help everyone when they need it.

Individuals will be inducted to the next phase, once they have displayed their ability to complete all tasks, as listed in the Outline below. These skills have to be demonstrated constantly to either the Head Server or the Incumbent. The individual will be introduced as the next stage of a server at a ceremony during the Eucharist and the individual will make a promise to do a good job and a prayer of blessing will be said.

All page references are from Greig S. Dunn’s Servers and Services. A copy will be given to each server, and one will be in the library in the Parish Hall.

A binder with a checklist for each Assistant Server/Crucifer/Server will be in the Vestry Room. This is a guide for the learning process.

Assistant Server

For a person to become an Assistant Server, he or she must be able to, safely and without aid, light and extinguish the candles. An Assistant Server must also have an understanding of the procession of the children going down to Sunday School and be able to help a child to carry the Children’s Processional Cross.

An Assistant Server, who is of Sunday School Age, will process down with the Sunday School after the Children’s talk and come back up during/just before communion. We ask parents of these Assistant Servers to make sure their children are here in time to get ready and robbed. Once these children are here it is up to the Server to help them out.

An Assistant Server will be learning how to follow along with the service, focusing on the ‘gathering of the community’ and ‘the dismissal of the community’.

An Assistant Server will not be scheduled; they are allowed to participate whenever able. When there are two or more Assistant Servers, they will take turns lighting and extinguishing the candles, as well as carrying down the Children’s Cross.

When there is not a Server here an Assistant Server will not serve, unless otherwise directed by the Incumbent.


Two Acolytes each carry a processional candle during the procession (going into the service) and the recession (leaving the service). Any Assistant Server/Crucifer/Server can act as an Acolyte if they are able to safely carry the candle. To become a Server the person must be able to perform this task.

Refer to page 50 Servers and Services.


A Crucifer carries the Processional Cross during the procession and recession. To be a Crucifer, a person must be able to safely carry the Processional Cross. A Crucifer may help with lighting and extinguishing candles and receiving the offering as he or she may be scheduled by themselves. A Crucifer will not be expected to carry out the duties of a Server.

Once they are inducted as a Crucifer, they will wear a red cord with a cross.

The Crucifer will be working on learning the duties of a Server.

Refer to page 84 Servers and Services.


A Server will stay upstairs for the whole service. When an Assistant Server/Crucifer is present, they will light and extinguish the candles, however, if they are not the Server will do it. The Server will also lead the reading of the psalm, receive the offering and gifts; and during a Eucharist, assist the celebrant in preparing the altar and in doing the ablutions.

A Server is also responsible helping Assistant Servers, giving them questions when needed and offering guidance.

Once a Server is inducted, he or she will wear a blue cord with a cross. To be inducted as a Server, the person must have been a Crucifer and an Acolyte and completed the outline below.

Refer to pages 39-47 Servers and Services.

Head Server

The Head Server is responsible for scheduling Assistant Servers, Acolytes, Crucifers and Servers, and for their training and supervision. The training will be done in conjunction with the Incumbent. The Head Server is appointed by the Incumbent. He or she will wear a green cord with their cross. See Head Server ministry description on

Quick Tips

Bowing: Page 27 Servers and Services.

Kneeling: Page 28 Servers and Services.