Liturgical Ministries

Service and guidelilnes

Liturgical Ministries


Altar Servers

It is a privilege and an honor to serve God and God's people through this ministry. Boys and girls who have received First Holy Communion assist the priest in the celebration of the liturgy of the Mass. Adults also are welcome to become altar servers. If you are interested send an email message to the chairperson of the liturgy committee. 

Altar Society

The Holy Cross Altar Society is an organized ministry established more than 50 years ago by several women of the church under the auspices of the Liturgical Committee. The primary duties of the Altar Society include:

  • Participating in the preparation of the altar for Mass
  • Changing of linens and backdrops according to the liturgical seasons
  • Cleaning of the church linens
  • Decorating the church for special occasions
  • Serving as hostesses for parish events

In addition to our duties related to the preparation of the altar, our society seeks to promote spiritual growth and fellowship among its members, and outreach to the wider faith community. Throughout the years, Altar Society has sponsored several successful fundraisers including a Holy Cross Cookbook and wine tasting events.

Altar Society meets the third Sunday of the month immediately after the 10:00 AM Mass. Any woman who is an active participant in the Holy Cross community is invited to our meetings and may join the Altar Society. For more information contact Sharon Baker, president. 

Check-in Team for Masses

As we continue to function under COVID-19 guidelines, Holy Cross has created a new Check-in Team ministry, to check in those attending our 10 AM Sunday Mass. Check-in Team members arrive between 9:00 AM and 9:15 AM to check people in as they arrive for Mass, using that Sunday's signup list which will be on the table (provided by the office manager). People attending are reminded to step up to the wall-mounted thermometer to take their temperature (by placing the forehead or inside of wrist up to the thermometer reader), and then to tell the check-in person their temperature and responses to two COVID-related questions. Once checked in, Ushers will guide attendees to the Sanctuary door and provide guidance regarding seating. Following is the link for Check-in Team members.

Extraordinary Ministers of the Eucharist

Men and women appointed to distribute during the celebration of Mass and to homebound parishioners. Extraordinary Ministers of the Eucharist must meet certain criteria. Coordinator: Maria Romp

Intercessory Prayers

Prayers of the Faithful for weekend and Holy Days of Obligation liturgies are created by the General Intercession Sub-Committee of the parish's Liturgical Committee. Special intentions are included by written requests from the congregation. The list of prayers is submitted weekly to the pastor and office manager for review and distribution. The pastor has the authority to add, change or delete prayers on the list. If you would like to serve on this committee, please contact James Siewert, coordinator.

Liturgy and Music Ministry

The Music Ministry at Holy Cross church provides music for the 5:00 pm Vigil mass and the 10:00 am Sunday Mass and other special liturgies. There are two choirs that lead the congregation in song; the Ensemble Choir for the Vigil Mass on Saturday and the Gospel Choir for the Sunday Mass. The music styles range from traditional Catholic music to African American gospel, spirituals and contemporary music. Anyone who has a love for singing and is interested in being of service to the ministry is welcome to join us. The Ensemble rehearses one hour before Mass on Saturdays and the Gospel Choir rehearses on Thursday evenings at 7:00 PM. If interested in joining, please contact Sister Janet Schemmel at 919-233-8229 for the Ensemble Choir or Gloria Burton, Holy Cross Liturgy and Music Ministry director, at 919-598-5761 for the Gospel Choir.


Members of the Lector Ministry proclaim God's Word at all liturgical functions. This includes weekday Mass, as well as the Saturday Vigil Mass and Sunday Mass. Lectors may also be called upon to read at prayer services and other special liturgies. Older teens and adults are invited to consider this ministry. Individuals need to be available as scheduled to serve or to secure a substitute. Proper attire is expected. Lectors are required to participate in periodic training on proper preparation, presentation and presence to continually improve in this important ministry. If you would like to serve in this ministry, please contact Chris Cameron, Lectors coordinator. Click here for Lector guidelines and procedures (open and download document).


A sacristan is a person appointed to make sure the altar and sanctuary are properly prepared before the celebration of the daily, weekend and special Masses. The responsibilities include preparing and laying out the vestments and anything else needed for the celebration, such as wine and Holy Eucharist, cruets, chalices, linens, candles, the processional cross and liturgical books, and confirms that the liturgical ministers have checked in. After Mass is over, the Sacristan cleans and returns all items to the proper area in the Sacristy.

The sacristan also assists the priest with the preparations for Baptisms, including laying out the candles, oils and linens at the Baptismal font. 

This is a great ministry for a reliable adult who is looking for an easy - but important - job and would like to learn about some of the “behind the scenes” works of the church. Workshops and on-the-job training are provided. For details, contact Gloria Burton, Liturgy and Choir director.


Duties include greeting those coming to Mass, guiding them to their seats before Mass, to receive Communion during Mass, and to the exit door after Mass. Ushers also sanitize pews after Mass. If you are interested in serving, contact our Usher coordinator, Anthony Wilson 

Special Liturgies

Special Liturgies are celebrated to support specific needs of the parishioners and may include, but are not limited to, Ritual Liturgies, Liturgies for Various Needs, Liturgies for Various Circumstances and Votive Liturgies.

Ritual Liturgies are celebrated by our pastor in connection with certain Sacraments and Sacramentals. Such liturgies cannot be celebrated at will nor can they be celebrated during Sundays in Advent and Lent/Easter Season. However, Liturgies for Various Needs or Liturgies for Various Circumstances may be celebrated as the need occurs.

Votive Liturgies in honor of the Blessed Virgin Mary, the angels, or a specific saint may be celebrated on weekdays in Ordinary Time. These liturgies are similar to Ritual Liturgies as they are also restrictive in nature. They cannot be celebrated as Votive Liturgies if they refer to a specific event in the live of the Lord or the Blessed Virgin Mary. The Immaculate Conception, however, is an exception to this rule.

More familiar are the special liturgies for Ash Wednesday, Advent, Palm Sunday, the Holy Tridiuum, weddings, funerals, and church dedications. All require special planning and coordination among all of the ministries. These may also include guest ministers. To assure that the required number of ministers are available for these special liturgies, ministry coordinators must recruit and prepare more liturgical ministers than are needed for the regular weekend liturgies. Gloria Burton is the parish's liturgy director.

Funerals and Remembrance

Funeral arrangements are made with the pastor and office administrator. Please contact the pastor or call the the parish office (919-957-2900) in the case of serious illness or when funeral arrangements are needed. The parish's Communications Committee sends a funeral announcement to members of the parish, to keep them informed, and adds the names of those who have died to the parish's Remembrance page on this website. 

Click here to view current funeral announcements.  


We Remember

Holy Cross enters the names of our parish members who have died on our Page of Remembrance on this website. Included are parishioners who have died since the founding of the parish in 1940. We remember our deceased members especially on All Souls Day.


Liturgical Ministries

Read a message from the Liturgical Committee chairperson and view the list of liturgical ministry coordinators. 

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