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Ushering Guidelines And Responsiblities

August 2016

Pre Mass Duties:

  • Lead usher should arrive 30 minutes before Mass and the others ushers should arrive 25 minutes before Mass. Sections are either assigned or selected. There is a diagram in the ushers log book. Familiarize yourself with where things are and what is going on in the gathering area so that you can help answer questions if asked. People come to you first.
  • If there is a special collection or anything extra during Mass, there is usually a note on the counter over the safe (or in the ushers log book). Please share this information with all other ushers.
  • Ushers will help greet & open the door for the congregation when we aren’t busy with other duties. Doors to the sanctuary should remain closed before Mass to keep the noise of the gathering area out while people pray, but ushers can open for people entering the church.
  • 2 ushers take a Secure Pak bag from the top of the pile in the safe cabinet and write on the bag the date and Mass time. They then go to the Usher’s log book and write the date, mass time and their signatures (2) next to the line in the log that matches the number on the bag.
  • 1 usher can then take the bag and place it on the table in the gathering area under the television and take out the collection baskets.
  • Assign an usher to find a family to be gift bearers. Instruct them on the following:
    • Come to the baptismal font during prayers of the faithful.
    • Wait for the altar server, who will bring them to the front of the priest.
    • Carry the bread and wine to the priest.
    • Bow and return to your seats after the priest has taken the gifts.
  • Remove bulletins and ascents before Mass begins from the center table in the gathering area. So that parishioners aren’t reading them during Mass.
  • Place a gluten free host on the credence table up front when requested. (see gluten free below). Inform the person requesting to sit in section 4(or at least go to the priest to receive communion).

Mass & Communion:

  • As church fills up, help people find seats by asking others politely to make room. Also encourage people not to sit in the windows unless the pews are full.
  • After Mass begins and before the first reading, you can help find seats for the people still in need of one. Please do not seat anyone during the readings – wait until the congregation stands for the Alleluia (which starts the gospel) to let the others take a seat. We will have signs on brass poles to point, that state to refrain for taking a seat during the readings.
  • Get your collection baskets when the prayers of the faithful are being said. When Father says, “The children may bring up their gifts”, you can start handing out baskets.
Passing out baskets for collections:
  • In sections 1,3,4,6 you drop a basket on the first row then at odd number pews. You will need to make adjusts for an open front row. The baskets should be distributed so that each row passes it down then back up.
  • In wing sections 2&5 drop a basket at the front rows then drop one basket in each section behind the front rows. Make sure you pick up the front row before someone hands a basket back into one of the side rows.
    • Most sections get 3 baskets. Section 6 has fewer pews due to the choir, so two baskets should be sufficient.
    • Section 6 usher should pass through the cry room after section 6 is complete to collect there.
  • After the collection, all collection baskets are dumped into the security bag at the same table in the gathering area. The bag is then sealed. Keep the strip off the bag to be placed in the pocket of the log book.
  • Two ushers walk the bag to the safe and put it into the safe. The strip from the bag seal is then placed into the pocket of the usher’s log book.
  • Assist with Communion traffic flow & inform the EM (Eucharistic Minister) of those disabled & elderly in need of communion and where they are seated. These few people should receive Communion after the congregation for efficiency.

 Post Mass Duties:

  • Prop open glass doors after the final blessing
  • Help pass out bulletins & Ascents
  • Soon after Mass is completed, close the glass doors. This is to keep the Church cool or warm, depending on the season.
  • Go through your assisted section and tidy up the church & cry room for the next Mass.

Ushering Attire:

  • Normal dress code – Coat & tie or crew shirt with a jacket are appropriate anytime
  • Seasonal dress code-June thru September are the months that it’s OK not to wear a jacket. The month of May has several special liturgical celebrations. It is preferred to stay more formal for these. Ties with a long sleeved shirt, long-sleeve shirt or jacket with a sport shirt are acceptable for seasonal dress. Women and young people that are ushering should wear appropriate attire for Church.

Gluten Free Hosts:

When a gluten free host is requested, retrieve the host from the freezer, place it in the pix & then put the host/pix on credence table in front of Church with all of the chalices & ciboriums. If there isn’t a pix in the freezer, look in the cabinets above the sink. If you are still unable to locate one, ask for help from an EM (Eucharistic minister).