Q: Since the Missal speaks of “instituted acolytes” what defines an instituted acolyte and can we institute our sacristans? Is it a “male only” thing?
A: Only men may be instituted as acolytes, and the bishop performs the ceremony of institution. It is typically done only for seminarians before their ordination. You may ask the bishop to institute men into the ministry of acolyte if you wish, but it may be pastorally imprudent.
Response: For what it’s worth, men in formation for the diaconate are also instituted as readers and acolytes.
A: You’re absolutely right. I should have said that too.