Good Sites and Links for Better Proclaiming

The Lector At Mass: The Catholic Bishops' site covering the general principals of the ministry and basic functions of the lector. It's a sound foundation from which to begin and build on any lector training, or for orientation to a broader Catholic audience

Lectors: Proclaiming the Word: Written in 1992, but still a timeless list of dos and don'ts by Karen Sue Smith, former Editorial Director of America National Catholic Review. Of all the online lector guides out there from various parishes, this is one of the most thorough and insightful, and an excellent discussion tool for meetings.  

The Ministry of the Lector: From America,the National Catholic Weekly. Jim Schellman of the North American Forum on the Catechumenate gives a powerful explanation of the Sacramental presence and power of the Scriptures at Mass, and the importance of identifying ourselves with our readings. By reflecting on our own journey in Christ as it relates to our reading, we can project more feeling and make it easier for our listeners to hear, grasp and respond to the reading once they’ve departed. 

The Effective Lector: An informative piece by Edward Horodko, a professional voice actor and lector workshop teacher/leader. If you're not inclined toward a lot of in-depth study, there are enough helpful basics here to guide you on your way toward being an effective proclaimer. 

Spiritual Reflections on the Ministry of Reader/Lector from the blog, 
A Quiet Moment: a Catholic Byte a Day. 

A Few Good Lectors Are Not Enough: Featured in Catholic Exchange in April, 2012. Written by George Miller to stress to lectors and parish leaders the importance of frequent regularly scheduled gatherings, and what it takes to have more than just a few good lectors in their church. 

The Lectionary Introduction: A must-read. If you’ve ever questioned the significance of the lector’s role in the liturgy, this section of the Lectionary for Mass says it all. If you don’t have a lectionary on your bookshelf, bring it up online here.

Does Your Parish Need to Raise the Bar for Its Lectors? Featured in Catholic Online by George Miller about how in many churches, the highest demands for excellence and professionalism are put on the presiders, deacons, musicians, sacristans and greeters; but not enough on the lectors. A must-read for Pastors and liturgical ministry leaders. 

Reading Scripture Aloud: A substantial piece by Dr. Richard F. Ward, who, at the time of this writing was the Clement-Muehl Associate Professor of Communication Arts at Yale Divinity School. It covers a range of guidelines for expanding your skills and encouraging active listenership throughout your congregation. 

Reading the Word Sotto Voce: An insightful piece by Deacon Douglas McManaman cautions lectors about being too dramatic and relying too much on performance techniques to make the word of God come to life.

The Lector At Mass: From the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, this piece gives a good overview of the ministry and the responsibilities it entails. 

How to Proclaim the Word of the Lord: Interesting piece by covering many details on procedures not always seen in parish and diocesan guidelines.

Reflections on the Art of Lectoring: Written by music professor Allen Brings about the Mass bearing some similarities to theatre. Though the lectors' responsibilities are not comparable in scope to the priests', their preparation for the service should be no less rigorous, and they must maintain a high standard.

Why Don't Catholics Read the Bible: If you ever question the importance of the lector in the celebration of the Mass, Fr. Dwight Longnecker gives an eye-opening explanation of how Catholics use the Sacred Scriptures as a worship aid in the celebration of the Mass, and how this practice differs from the way Evangelicals use the Bible.

Handbook for Lectors and Lay Readers: Written by Fr. Peter Schineller of Nigeria, is filled with numerous ministry guidelines and inspirational prayers and meeting aids. Scroll down to the "Handbooks" section to bring the document up. 

The Liturgy of The Word: If you ever need to explain the importance of the lector's role in the Mass to anyone, this piece makes it easy. Also view the "Liturgy of The Word Explained" on our Videos page, and the piece from St. Paul Center for Biblical Theology.

Basking in the Scriptures: This touching piece by Father John G. Hillier explains how, in addition to the Liturgy of the Word, we are given the wonderful opportunity to listen, pray, love, sing and absorb ourselves in God's precious word throughout the celebration of the Mass. It's an inspiring message for lectors who need to confirm to themselves the importance of their role in the celebration.  

How to Proclaim the Word of the Lord:  A thorough step-by-step explanation of how to proclaim God's word more effectively by

The Public Reading of Scripture​: Aside from the fact that this writer's church reserves Public Scripture reading for men, he makes a strong case for the importance of reading the word of God in worship service, and doing it in the right way. 

The Importance of Reading Scripture in Worship: A lead pastor of a Presbyterian church expresses his views on how the reading of scripture has unfortunately taken a back seat to the main event, the sermon, when it should be the other way around.

Devoted to the Public Reading of Scripture: A powerful and thought provoking essay about putting more emphasis on reading the word of God in worship, and relying less on the word of preachers through their sermons. 

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