SULLIVAN’S ISLAND — Stella Maris Church hosted a week-long training session July 21-26 for altar servers who serve Masses of the Roman Missal of 1962.
Msgr. Lawrence McInerny, pastor, hosted a dozen young men from his parish the first three days and then 20 youths ages 8 to 20 made the trek from the Piedmont deanery and southern North Carolina to refine their skills in serving the Latin Mass for the latter part of the week.
In addition to learning Latin and details of serving at the altar, the group enjoyed fellowship at the beach.
About 10 young men and fathers camped out in Stella Maris’ youth center for three nights. A Saturday evening cookout, organized by Bill and Cheryl Daniels with assistance from other Stella Maris families, followed the Saturday vigil Mass.
“I enjoyed myself tremendously and learned a lot about serving the Latin Mass,” said Nicholas Kelly, 11, of Rutherfordton, N.C. “It was good to be with other boys who enjoy serving the Mass as much as I do.”
His brother, Tommy, 17, concurred.
“It was wonderful to have a priest allow us the opportunity … to learn and practice to better serve at the altar,” he said.
In addition to three days of traditional Latin Masses, other spiritual activities included nightly benediction of the Blessed Sacrament and the rosary.
Stella Maris parishioners accompanied the servers during the devotions on Thursday and Friday evenings.
Thomas Kelly, Nicholas’ and Tommy’s father, commented on the number of families and young men interested in traveling and participating in the educational event.
“It was very gratifying to see so many young men and boys taking such an active and positive role in their faith,” the elder Kelly said.
Steve Miller, a father of nine from Spartanburg, had three sons — Robert, Paul and Ross — in attendance. He was impressed with the combination of fun and spirituality the camp provided. Miller said he was enthusiastic about following up with additional training in the Upstate in order to better prepare his sons to serve the Latin Mass at Prince of Peace in Taylors, held the third Sunday of each month.
“Latin is the language of the Church, and its place in worship is something I feel obligated to pass on to my children,” he said.
Msgr. McInerny expressed his appreciation at the turnout. “The week was spiritually uplifting,” he said.
Submitted by Brian Mershon