One of the requirements of progress on the path of achievement of perfection is the service that one can render to Teachers, Great Ones, and to his fellow human beings.
How One Can Serve the Teacher:
1. By understanding and practicing his wisdom.
2. By offering gifts to him.
3. By protecting him and his name from malice and slander.
4. By propagating his Teaching and continuing in his service when he passes away.
5. By not letting any of his creativity be lost after he passes away.
6. By not letting people distort his Teaching and his true image.
7. By sending love and blessings to him during his life on earth and in the hereafter.
The Lotus Sutra makes this very clear when it states that one can become a Buddha only after serving thousands of Buddhas through his many incarnations.
Virtues & Values vol.3, p.195