Quarter Query ~ June 2017 ~ Altar Guild at Trinity Memorial

Even though the information I have found so far only takes me back to the 1920’s, I think I can safely assume that the Altar Guild is likely one of the oldest active ministries at Trinity Memorial.  As a kid I had no idea that the Altar Guild existed It wasn’t until I was in my early teens when I was serving as an Acolyte that I started to become aware of the Altar Guild.  I think the reason for this lack of awareness, is due to the notion that it is a ministry that isn’t done while everyone is watching, but rather it is a quiet ministry much like the stage crew in a stage production evidence is seen of their presence, but the people themselves are mostly unseen and out of the spotlight.  The Altar Guild ensures that everything is in place, and the table set for each service, but do-so when all is quiet.

From what I can tell, little has changed with regards to the basic responsibilities of the Altar Guild. Washing and pressing linens, polishing the silver, making sure that everything the Priest needs during services is ready before people arrive.

That said, I can also say there have been at least a few changes over the years with regards to the Altar Guild.  In 1928 such as, the Altar Guild put all the memorial items on display so people could see the items.  Some of the memorial items included a missile and missile stand, burses, veils, The crosses for the high altar and the chapel along with the processional cross that is still used today were part of this display.[1]  During times when there were more youth at Trinity, there was a Junior Altar Guild, but little is known about its role.

There is evidence that shows that each Directress has had a unique leadership style, with each one bringing a slightly different flavor of leadership.  Some opted to have weekly or monthly Altar Guild meetings.  Others preferred to train people on a one on one basis, and then assign members to a team, yet still be available to answer questions that members may have about any changes; and hold an annual meeting.

[1] (Altar Guild 1928)


“Altar Guild” Warren Tribune – 1928-Apr-19.” Newspapers.com. April 19, 1928. https://www.newspapers.com/image/37107038/?terms=Warren%2BTribune%2BTrinity%2BMemorial%2BAltar%2BGuild  (accessed Feb 25, 2017).


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Posted in Altar Guild, EMWC, Trinity Memorial Church of Warren, Warren PA

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