Altar PartyThe Altar Party plays an integral and important part of our worship services at Ascension. The members of the Altar Party are the Acolytes, the Lector, the Lay Ministers and the Verger. We use four acolytes at our services: the Crucifer, the Server, and the Torchbearers. Our Lector reads the Lessons of the Day as well as the Prayers for the People during the service. Our Lay Ministers serve as either Chalice Bearers or Patens and assist the Priest in serving Communion to the congregation. Our Verger’s role is to facilitate the order of service. Service on the Altar Party is open to all and it is a wonderful and rewarding ministry. If you would like to participate or have questions, please call Gil Steindorff (Lay Ministers), Tim Lewis (Acolytes) or Susan Copeland (Vergers).
The altar guild is a ministry of people who care for the worship and communion vessels, linens, candles, appointments, and altars of the church of the Ascension and who serve under the direction of the Rector.
Altar Guild members prepare each worship service lovingly, and then vessels are cleared, cleaned and stored for the next service.
The Altar Guild is not just another church job, it is a vocation. A feeling of dedication and self-effacement is essential for any person aspiring to the privilege of serving God's altar.
Acolytes are dedicated young people, ranging in age from 12 to 18 years, who serve a critical role in worship services at the Ascension. The term ‘acolyte’ derives from the Greek word, ‘akolouthos’, meaning server, attendant or follower. Acolytes have existed almost as long as there have been priests and, in the Episcopal Church, acolytes have served at the altar since ancient times. An acolyte’s service is an offering to God and should not be entered into lightly.
Our acolytes serve as a team within a team. The server, the crucifer, and torchbearers serve in the Altar Party, a larger team, which includes the priest, the verger, the lector, the chalice bearers and the acolytes. Duties of acolytes at the Ascension include leading the processional at worship services while carrying the Processional Cross, tending the Altar candles, carrying the Gospel book during Gospel readings, assisting in the collection of alms and the presentation of the Bread and Wine during the Eucharist.
Acolytes wear either white or red vestments similar to those of the lectors, chalice bearers, and choir members. We have acolyte masters who thoroughly train our acolytes before they begin their service. During the service the vergers supervise and direct the acolytes.
Serving as an acolyte is a wonderful opportunity to learn about the Episcopal Church, to develop relationships with other young people and to get to know the clergy and other adults who serve at the Altar. We also have fun!
The ushers at Church of the Ascension will welcome you as enter the church. They are on hand to answer questions and provide help with directions as needed. They will offer a bulletin, which contains the order of worship and readings for the service.
Ushers are responsible for beginning the service with the ringing of the church bells. They collect the offerings, assist in directing communion and close the service, again with the ringing of the bells.
Lay Eucharistic Ministers are faithful servants who take communion to the home of members of the congregation who are unable to be present at the celebration because of illness or infirmity.
(God’s Love in Action)
There are times when every one of us has difficulties in life. That is when Stephen Ministry is there for you. It is a one-to-one Christian caregiving ministry.
Members of our congregation, called Stephen Ministers, who have received 50 hours of caregiving training to minister to people experiencing a crisis, facing a challenge, or going through a tough time, are there to meet with you – privately and confidentially – on a weekly basis to listen, encourage, support and remind you of Christ’s presence in your life.
If you feel you need a Stephen Minister, please contact Rev. Andy Thayer and he will make the necessary arrangements.
“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.”
ECW stands for “Episcopal Church Women”, all women in the congregation are included in membership. Song with serving ministries ….We organize and promote parish life, host and staff many of the annual parish events. These include: the Blessing of the Animals, the annual, Christmas tree trim, Ascension Day and a beautiful reception honoring for our new confirmands. Our popular Chicken Curry Luncheon is held each fall as our annual fundraiser, all are invited to attend.
+ TLC – The Love of Christ
The TLC (The Love of Christ) ministry provides our congregation with the opportunity to bring action out of our love for each other at Ascension. While each church member is encouraged to provide casseroles, breads and baked goods for the TLC freezer. A team of caring parishioners is organized on a monthly basis to deliver food or a special treat to our church family who are experiencing illness, special needs, or even a joyful event in life. At a time when our lives are so hectic with constant demands, the TLC ministry provides us with the blessing of God’s presence and activity around us as we pause to notice our surroundings and each other’s needs. Let us know you might be willing to explore this ministry of care.
+ Guild of the Christ Child
This team mobilizes when a new baby is born to parishioners or friends of the Ascension. The birth of a baby is a joyful time for any family. It can also add some stress during the transition time from hospital to home. This team coordinates and delivers meals to those returning home with a new baby. The crew also delivers diapers and other necessities with the food. The Guild is also on standby to assist the family, mother, father and baby in other ways.
+ Prayers and Squares
Prayer Quilt Ministry, also known as "Prayers and Squares."
Can you touch a prayer? Can you pull it close and feel its comfort? You can if it’s part of a prayer quilt. This powerful ministry of quilts as gifts of love starts with layers of quilt pieces tied together leaving strings for people to add their personal prayers by tying knots. Recipients of prayer quilts have given moving testimony of God’s presence through these simple comforters.
No sewing skills are required, just many hands, to cut, press, piece together, and add finishing touches. Come join the group every 2nd Tuesday morning in the Quilt Room.
+ Visiting Ministry
This group ministers to our shut-ins and those residing in nursing homes with friendly visits and a caring smile. This is a special opportunity for those who want to minister to our senior parishioners.
+ Daughters of the King
Are you interested in intercessory and corporate prayer? Desire fellowship with other women who feel called to a life of prayer, service and evangelism? If so, the DOK chapter at Church of the Ascension would love to encourage you to prayerfully consider becoming a member of our chapter. We are a diverse group of women, of different ages and life experiences, but share the belief in the power of prayer, especially corporate prayer. We pray daily by name, for every person on the church prayer list and hope that each individual feels uplifted by knowing we are praying specifically for his or her need. Daughters of the King is organized as a religious order, and membership requires a training period in which each woman discerns if she is called to be a Daughter. We are recognized by the silver cross we wear, designed and trademarked for the exclusive use of the Order.
We are also a social group who love to get together for fellowship. We have great love and respect for each other and have fun together! DOK is blessed with wonderful, prayerful women and we would love to embrace any woman who feels called to be a member.
Brotherhood of St. Andrew
The Brotherhood of St. Andrew is a worldwide order of men and boys of the Episcopal Church with a mission for personal spiritual growth, mutual ministry and Christian service. In March 2015, men of the Ascension voted to reactivate the parish's Brotherhood of St. Andrew chapter, which was founded in 1911.
The organization's focus is seeking to enrich the lives of our community, responding to emergent needs of parishioners and community-based organizations. The Ascension Brotherhood of St. Andrew meets the second Monday of each month except during July and August. Meetings include a wine and food reception followed by prayer, a brief presentation and discussion.
Brett Hall is director of the parish's brotherhood chapter. If you are interested in becoming a member, email him at firstname.lastname@example.org
For more information on Brotherhood of St. Andrew, go to their website:brotherhoodofstandrew.org