Altar servers help at the altar while the priest celebrates the liturgy. Altar servers can carry the processional cross. They can hold the book when the priest isn’t at the altar. They can carry the incense and censer or present the bread, wine, and water during the preparation of the gifts. Altar servers have a special place in the holy sanctuary, where access is limited to very few people, so they set an example of reverent service for the assembly during Mass.
“The altar server has a privileged place in liturgical celebrations . . . Thus you altar servers especially are called to be young friends of Jesus. Strive to deepen and foster this friendship with him.” (Pope John Paul II, August 1, 2001)