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Altar Boys

ALTAR BOYS

 John Berchmans was born March 13, 1599, in the Belgian province of Flemish Brabant. He was the son of a shoemaker. In 1615, the Jesuits opened a college at Malines and he was one of the first to enroll. Immediately, when he entered, he enrolled in the Sodality of the Blessed Virgin Mary. He was affable, kind, and endowed with an outgoing personality that endeared him to everyone. On September 25, 1618 he made his first vows and went to Antwerp to begin philosophy studies. In August 1621 he fell seriously ill with Roman fever. On August 13, 1621, at age twenty-two years and five months he died from his illness. When he died, a large crowd gathered for several days to view his remains before burial in Sant´ Ignazio Church, and to invoke his intercession. That same year, Phillip-Charles, Duke of Aarschot, sent a petition to Pope Gregory XV to gather information with the intent of beatification of John Berchmans. He had a special devotion to the Mother of God; and to him is owed the Little Rosary of the Immaculate Conception. John Berchmans was declared Blessed in 1865, and canonized in 1888. Statues frequently depict him with hands clasped, holding his crucifix, his book of rules, and his rosary.  His feast day is November 26th. He is best known as the patron saint of altar servers and it is for this reason why we have named the altar boy group after him.

 Requirements to Become an Altar Server

1. The child has received his First Holy Communion. 

2.  He satisfactorily completes the training to become an altar server.

3.  He participates in a special Mass where he receives a blessing from the priest and his altar server frock.

 

Prayer to St. John Berchmans 

Patron of Altar Boys

Dear St. John, you died at a very young age, but in that short time
you learned to live an exemplary life as a member of the Society of Jesus.
Directed by your Guardian Angel, whom you confidently invoked,
you learned to be a most humble server at the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass.
Help altar boys imitate you in their service at Eucharistic celebrations
as well as in their conduct with others. Amen.

 



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