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Proclaiming the word of God has always been a fundamental part of Christian liturgy. Since “by tradition, the function of proclaiming the readings is ministerial, not presidential, “(General Instruction of the Roman Missal, Third Typical Edition, 20023/4GIRM #59), it properly belongs to ministers other than the presiding priest. This includes members of the faith community. Requirements of effective lectors include competence in public speaking, training and practice in technical skills and on-going formation.
St. Michael in Old Town provides training to lay faithful called to this important ministry before being assigned to service in the assembly. Many technical skills are required for successful proclamation within a liturgical setting. Ongoing formation opportunities for biblical and liturgical are needed as well.
- Learning the basics of public speaking
- Learning to work with a microphone
- Becoming familiar with the operation of the sound system.
- Practicing movements with grace and dignity while learning the specifics of the liturgical space.
- Becoming familiar with the arrangement and reverent handling of the sacred books.
- Ongoing Formation
Biblical formation includes:
- A basic introduction to the structure and content of the Bible and the Lectionary.
- Ongoing Scripture study to foster a greater love for God(‘s word.
Liturgical formation includes:
- A basic knowledge of the structure and theology of the Mass.
- An understanding of the connection between the Liturgy of the Word and the Liturgy of the Eucharist.
- A grasp of the importance of symbol and ritual in Catholic worship.
Those serving in this ministry have a serious responsibility to prepare, in an immediate way, the readings they are scheduled to proclaim, “so that the faithful by listening to the readings from the sacred texts may develop in their hearts a warm and living love for Sacred Scripture.” (GIRM #101).
Immediate preparation includes:
- Becoming familiar with all the readings for the assigned day well in advance of the liturgy.
- Praying with the readings and reflecting on what they mean.
- Consulting a commentary or lector’s preparation book for an understanding of the readings.
- Practicing intonation, phrasing and correct pronunciation for the assigned passage by reading it out loud.
- Arriving in enough time to become calm and unhurried before the liturgy begins and to check for any changes or special instructions.
- Dressing in a way that reflects the importance and dignity of this ministry.
- Serving when scheduled and notifying a responsible authority and/or arranging for a substitute when not available.
Interested parishioners are invited to call the Parish Office at (312) 642-2498 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.