The sacristan is a member of the parish who is ultimately responsible for the material preparations for all liturgical services at the church. The sacristan is responsible for the recruitment, training, development, scheduling and supervision of the members of the Altar Guild. The average weekly time commitment is eight to twelve hours per week.
The sacristan serves as a member of the Liturgical Planning Committee and as an adviser to the Gifts and Memorials Committee and Property Committee. The sacristan manages the Altar Guild budget.
The person must have experience on the Altar Guild preparing vessels, vestments, and candles; have a strong sense of the specifics of the liturgical life of the parish; and have the ability to motivate the group to its highest level of performance.
The sacristan must show evidence of personal maturity in faith as to be able to maintain an atmosphere of devout yet joyous service.
The sacristan must have previous experience in management or a leadership position. Teaching ability with all age groups is necessary. The sacristan must have basic understanding of church, parish, and liturgical history. Understanding of textiles and sewing is also important.
The sacristan is appointed by and reports to the rector. The sacristan supervises members of the Altar Guild. He or she will communicate regularly with the Parish Administrator regarding special services such as weddings, funerals and baptisms and will also make the Administrator aware of special needs involving the work of the sextons (cleaning, moving of furniture, fans, etc.) The sacristan will work closely with the director of the Flower Arranging Guild to coordinate flowers and devotional displays. The sacristan represents the parish to the diocesan altar guild. The sacristan also works closely with the Acolyte Warden to ensure smooth coordination of preparations for services.
The sacristan will be evaluated at least annually by the rector regarding his or her effectiveness in leading the group, based on the effectiveness of service preparation, the functioning of the group as it relates to the spiritual development of its members, and to working relationships with other staff members and lay leaders.