Dear Young People! I greet you affectionately, dear young people. Your commitment to the altar is not only a dut but a great honor, a true holy service. Regarding this service, I would like to suggest some points for your reflection. ...The altar server has a privileged place in liturgical celebrations. Those who serve at Mass present themselves to a community. They experience from close at hand that Jesus Christ is present and active in every liturgy. Jesus is present whenever the community gathers to pray and give praise to God. Jesus is present in the words of Sacred Scripture. Jesus is present in the words of Sacred Scripture. Jesus is present above all in the Eucharist, under the appearances of bread and wine. He acts through the priest who celebrates Holy Mass and administers the sacraments in persona Christi (in the person of Christ.) Therefore in the liturgy you are far more than mere 'helpers of the parish priest." Above all, you are servants of Jesus Christ, the eternal High Priest. Thus you altar servers especially are called to be young friends of Jesus. Strive to deepen and foster this friendship with him. You will discover that in Jesus you have found a true friend for life.
Pope John Paul II, Address at the General Audience, August 1, 2001, the 1,000th of his pontificate