What is a reader?
Since ancient times, communities have chosen persons for the task of reading Scriptures at worship. Being a reader (or a ‘lector’) is more than just fulfilling a task. At its best, reading is a calling, a vocation, and a spiritual discipline. Reading is a commitment to effective sharing of Scripture during our community worship time. It is a commitment to preparing oneself so that one’s reading becomes a vehicle for God’s Word.
At the Cathedral a reader is anyone who reads a lesson, psalm, or prayer, during a service. Lay persons may read any lesson, but if the service is a Eucharist, the Gospel reading must be read by a deacon or priest. The readers also assist as chalicists during communion.
Who can be a reader?
You do not need to be a Shakespearean actor or a public speaker in order to be a reader, but it helps to have the ability to read clearly and persuasively. Readers must have the self discipline to prepare the reading, and a willingness to fully understand the passage. Many teens and children are gifted readers and, if their gifts are nurtured, some of them will become effective lifetime readers.
What are the specific roles of a reader?
At our 9.15am service the reader reads one reading, and this is immediately after the priest has said the collect. The reading should be done from the microphone next to the pulpit. At out 11.00am service, the reader wears a cassock and surplice and processes in with the verger, acolytes and clergy. They then sit by the lectern (on the right hand side as you face the altar), and read the Old Testament lesson immediately after the Collect, and the New Testament lesson immediately after the Psalm.
9:15 Readers are also expected to assist with the chalice during communion.
11:00 Readers are also asked to assist with the chalice during communion.
Is training provided?
Absolutely. Training is given to all new readers upon request. At a recent event we went over these guidelines:
Learn more about serving as a reader
Please contact Kelli in the Cathedral office: email@example.com