May you always be friends and apostles of Jesus Christ! – Benedict XVI to altar servers, 2006
Altar servers do exactly that, they serve at the altar. Like a fine banquet, those trained in this ministry carry, hold, remove or bring items to the Eucharistic table so that the sacred meal of our Lord can be carried out with dignity and without interruption.
Who can be an altar server? Here in the Archdiocese of Toronto boys and girls, men and women can carry out this sacred function provided they have been baptized in the Faith, and have a deep respect for the Eucharist which is the body, blood, soul and divinity of our Lord.
What time commitment is necessary? Children are to serve the mass they attend with their family. They can serve without having to be trained, as they will learn on the job. It is important that they arrive 15 minutes before the start of mass to prepare spiritually and physically (e.g. getting ‘vested’; receiving any last minute instruction) for the celebration. Use this form, fill it up and drop it off at the office. They can start immediately and will learn as they observe.
 Redemptionis Sacramentum, par. 47