FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Members in the Knights of St. Tarcisius will receive enhanced altar server training, along with training to become Extraordinary Minister of Holy Communion. The vestments our members wear at their home parish liturgies and the way in which the parish puts their training to work is at the full discretion of the pastor. Please use the button below to learn more about the four-year path to Knighthood our members walk.
We invite all pastors and priests to read the editorial of Fr. Scott Wallisch in regards to the Knights of St. Tarcisius, along with the full article about the program in the Leaven (the newspaper of the Archdiocese of Kansas City in Kansas). Please use the button below to read other testimonials about the Knights of St. Tarcisius.
The following questions are commonly asked by priests and pastors of local parishes:
Will this organization impose liturgical changes on my parish?
The Knights of St. Tarcisius operates with a zero footprint in parishes. Parish pastors are free to make decisions regarding the way in which altar servers perform their role in parish liturgical ministry. Although the Knights of St. Tarcisius is a program open to boys in high school who continue to serve Mass at their home parish, each pastor may decide whether or not to include parish high school girls in altar serving. Over time our members will be given enhanced altar server training, receive their own cassocks and surplices, and training to become Extraordinary Ministers of Holy Communion. Each pastor is free to determine how these young men, along with their training, vestments, etc., will be put to use. No pastor is required to allow these young men to wear cassocks, nor incorporate them into liturgical ministry as Extraordinary Ministers of Holy Communion. We fully support pastors in whatever decisions they make.
Will my parish need to give financial support to this organization or allow it to use vital parish resources (i.e. facility meeting spaces and parish employees)?
As in liturgical matters, the Knights of St. Tarcisius operates with a zero footprint in regards to parish finances and resources. We will hold no meetings at your parish, require no facility use from your parish, nor ask for any assistance from parish employees. At most we request to engage the young men of your parish in order to let them know more about the Knights of St. Tarcisius and encourage them to participate in the program. Such youth outreach would be done at the pastor’s discretion and could take any of the following forms: giving a short 15-20 minute presentation to 8th grade boys in the parish school, speaking at a youth ministry event, speaking at parish Masses and/or having an information booth after Masses.
Is the Knights of St. Tarcisius associated with Masses said in the Extraordinary Form?
We wish to see young men more active in their parishes and we understand that this typically means deepening their understanding of the Mass in the Ordinary Form. Although we have a deep love and respect for the Extraordinary Form, we do not offer altar server training for the Traditional Latin Mass. Due to the use of cassocks and surplices by our members, some have thought that the program is “traditional” or “conservative” in its agenda. We want to be very clear, however, that our sole agenda is to see young men more devoted to service, involved in the life of their parish, and open to the possibility of the priestly vocation. We hope that the use of special vestments and liturgical objects will help in this regard. As stated above, none of these vestments or liturgical objects are required for use in the liturgies of our members’ home parishes.
Will this program leave high school girls serving in my parish feeling left out?
It is high unlikely that you have any high school girls in your parish still serving at Mass. In fact, it is highly unlikely that you have more than a handful of high school servers in general. We’ve spoken with many Kansas City parishes and have discovered that, even in very large parishes, only around 3-6 high school youth continue to be active in altar serving in any given parish. That being said, one parish in Kansas City now has over 50 members in the Knight of St. Tarcisius and is on track to having around 75-95 members – and we have received no complaints from parish high school girls or parents in regards to this program. We strongly recommend that high school girls continue to play an important part of parish life, but we leave the facilitation of this to individual pastors and parish youth ministry programs. An important reason for the male-only dimension of the Knights of St. Tarcisius is the fact that we seek to promote priestly vocations and studies show that there is a strong correlation between altar serving and vocations to the priesthood.
What benefits will my parish receive from the Knights of St. Tarcisius?
There are many reasons why the Knights of St. Tarcisius will be a tremendous benefit to your parish - so many in fact that we devoted a whole page of this website to them. We invite you to visit this Benefits page to read and learn more. We also invite you to read an editorial about the Knights of St. Tarcisius by Fr. Scott Wallisch, along with a full article about the program from the Leaven (the newspaper of the Archdiocese of Kansas City in Kansas).
Elige Nos! - Choose Us!
Motto of the Knights of St. Tarcisius