Sunday 1st Mass
Sunday 2nd Mass
Sunday 3rd Mass
A Prayer Before Lectoring
as I prepare myself to read,
still my heart. Help me immerse myself in the scriptures to hear your message in them, that I may proclaim your message to others. I ask this through Jesus Christ our Lord.
Not everyone has a gift to be a lector. But almost everyone can read clearly in public. There is no trick to this and not much skill. It simply takes practice. Reading over the Scripture ten minutes before Mass is not practice. Practice means reading aloud several times a day for several days at a minimum. If every lector put in this basic amount of practice, the quality of reading would improve dramatically.
But usually, this will still not be lectoring. That is, it would not be the kind of proclamation that can change hearts. To do that, lectors need to take a second step. They need to pray. They need to pray about the reading and with the reading. They need to discover, through prayer, the single most important point God is asking them to make through that particular reading. Then they need to shape their reading so that it focuses on that point. Not everyone can do this. To do it well is a talent and a gift of the Spirit.
In the current Church canons, the office of Lector is officially an "instituted" office formally and canonically given to a person by the bishop. The reform of the Second Vatican Council extended to laypeople the opportunity to perform this liturgical role on a regular basis.
Lectoring is not a right or a privilege. It is a ministry that helps bring people to faith. It is the power of God’s Spirit that calls us all to use our gifts for that mission. Some are called to lector, but most are not. The community is best served when those with a true gift for lectoring proclaim the Word.