Beyond the basic professional preparation associated with any public
reading, there are certain attitudes and approaches which are unique
to liturgical reading.
The reader needs to ask God in prayer for the special grace to be
an effective proclaimer of the Word of God.
By meditating on the Scripture text, the reader searches out the
true meaning of the passage. This helps to give a faithful interpretation
of the text when read in the liturgical celebration.
3. Real Joy
Is the heart of good celebration. The reader, as a central figure
in the celebration, must try to carry that joy and share it with
the assembly by facial expression, quality of voice and manner of
4. Readings that are Heard
The reader should have one goal in mind -- to prepare in such a
way, to proclaim in such a way, that the community simply has to
listen to what the reader has to say.
5. Personal Word
The reader tries to make the reading come alive as a message for
today, as a true celebration in faith, as a personal word.
6. Practiced Readings
To read before others demands special preparation and care. Even
if the church is not large, the reader needs to practice in a loud,
In the Liturgy, the reader is a carrier of the word of God. It is
a great privilege. The reader should bring to the task of reading
a deep sense of service to those for whom he/she reads, a profound
respect for the Scriptures and dedication to excellence.
8. Living the Word
The reader must strive to make the word that he/she proclaims a
part of his/her own life from day to day. The authenticity that
flows from that is a powerful sign to others.
1. Ahead of time, read and re-read
the text from the lectionary several times. Meditate on it and try
to come to grips with its meaning. (Proclaimers at St. Cecilia's
are provided with a Living with Christ Sunday Missal containing
the year's readings. Note that the Missal is not to be used for
reading during mass.)
2. Work on vocal elements: pronunciation, enunciation, mood, pace,
timing, emphasis, pitch. A glossary for pronouncing unfamiliar names
can be found in the Sunday Lectionary, Study Edition.
3. Practice proclaiming the text aloud until you are satisfied that
it is the way it should be, and until you are comfortable with the
manner of presentation. Have someone who has knowledge of liturgical
reading listen to you and give help where needed.
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