Serving at the Altar

Worship service entrance processionWorship service entrance procession
At Augustana, deacons and acolytes are an essential part of our liturgical worship experience. Each Sunday, the “SAGA: Servants at God’s Altar” include the deacon, subdeacon, crucifer, bookbearer, and torchbearers. On especially formal Sundays, a thurifer enhances worship with incense, and in services that are anticipated to be quite large in attendance, a communion assistant is asked to help share the consecrated host (wafers).

There are set procedures and movements for each of the Servants at God’s Altar. Training is provided, and there is always an opportunity to ask questions and review the duties and required movements. It is recommended that a person serve as an acolyte before serving as a deacon. A deacon then has knowledge about all the roles that work together to make the worship move smoothly and reverentially, and can help fill in roles as needed.

The acolyte corps includes girls and boys as well as adults. A deacon is usually a person in the congregation who is known to be walking his/her journey of faith deliberately and with devotion.

Acolytes and Deacons: Servants at God’s Altar (SAGA)

Communion Cruet and Ciborium
The acolyte and deacon deacon corps are groups of people who value the liturgy and its historical significance.  We find joy bringing the liturgy to life.

Deacon: writes and prays the prayers of intercession, as well as leading other brief prayers and spoken portions of the worship service, assists with a chalice at communion

Subdeacon: helps set the altar for communion, assists with a chalice, and clears the altar after

Crucifer: carries the cross, leading the procession, the Gospel procession, and the recessional

Bookbearer: carries the large book of scriptural readings (the lectionary)

Torchbearers: carry the torches (tall candlesticks) in procession, Gospel procession, and recessional

Thurifer: carries the thurible with incense

  • If you are interested in becoming a deacon: contact Paul Beddoe, deacon coordinator
  • If you are interested in becoming an acolyte: contact Fred Bowell, acolyte coordinator

Reconciling in Christ

Augustana Lutheran Church is a spiritual community that celebrates the gifts of God that empower us to engage in the struggles of life, to care for each other, and to serve Christ where we work and live. We welcome the participation of people of all ages, ethnic backgrounds, sexual orientations, gender identities, educational backgrounds, and economic conditions––all who want to join in community to honor God and be of service to people.

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Get in Touch

Augustana Lutheran Church
2100 New Hampshire Ave NW
Washington, DC 20009
(202) 234-5315 (phone)
(202) 234-5312 (voicemail)
(202) 234-5724 (fax)
Website: http://augustanadc.org/
Email (General): office@augustanadc.org
Email (Pastor): pastor@augustanadc.org