Not just boys, but whole families serve in a number of Korean parishes.
“I was surprised when our parish priest asked me and my whole family to serve as an ‘altar family.’ I had never heard of this before,” said Athanasius Kim Gi-ho, who instructs altar servers at Nammok Church in Pusan diocese.
He and his two sons had assisted priests separately as altar servers in the past, but not his wife. So his family had to practice a bit for a few days before serving at Mass together.
When the Mass was over, parishioners gave them a round of applause, Kim recalled. “I have never been so honored and I was so proud of my family,” the parish council member said.
Over the years, in two or three parishes, I’ve heard suggestions for father-son and even mother-daughter experiences. It seems to get left on the table as a nice idea that never gets implemented.
From my end, I’ve tried to develop servers who are well-instructed and prepared, and who don’t need adult coaching to serve in the usual duties. Adults would tend to be looked at for leadership. The parish councilor quoted above refers to practice: that would be ideal for family groups were this to be implemented in most parishes I’ve known.
Any readers ever seen full families serving in this ministry?