The ministry of Sacristan is both sacred and practical. In their practical role, sacristans are asked to assist with the set up of the worship space and vessels for the Mass. In their sacred ministry, they are to assist in safeguarding the Precious Body & Blood, in consuming what remains of the Precious Blood after the distribution of Holy Communion, and in purifying the sacred vessels used in the liturgy. The Sacristan is a commissioned Minister of Holy Communion who is trained specifically to serve as a Sacristan.
The Sacristan arrives at least thirty (30) minutes prior to Mass, responsible for the following:
- preparing the worship space for Mass and other liturgies
- all vessels to be used at Mass (with the hosts and wine and water)
- preparing the credence table, offertory table, Altar
- setting all books to be used
- ensuring that all ministers are in place for the Mass
- turning lights on
- turning sound system on
- checking batteries for the portable mikes
- calling a priest if no celebrant is present within five minutes of Mass
- being present in the sacristy after Communion, in order to reverently consume all remaining Precious Blood and to purify all vessels
- turning lights and sound system off
- locking all doors
Cathedral Sacristans are scheduled for specific weekday and weekend Masses, Diocesan Masses, funerals and other special services.