A lector proclaims the first or second reading at Mass. This person also leads the Prayers of the Faithful and proclaim the antiphons at Mass.
A lector must have a desire to minister in this capacity at the Eucharistic liturgy. This ministry in the Church requires a person of excellent character who is serious about the practice of their faith and has a deep respect for God’s presence in the Word.
Thank you for being interested in volunteering at our beautiful parish! We look forward to meeting you soon.
Each interested person must attend a training session by the pastor before being permitted to sign up to read at a Mass. Please use the form at the bottom of this page to send an inquiry about volunteering for this ministry.
Practice! Practice! Practice! You should never get up in front of people to read something that you haven’t practiced beforehand. Read over the readings to yourself and out loud. If you’re not sure how to pronounce a word, research it online or ask the celebrant before Mass begins. Very often people do not pay attention to the readings at Mass because they are poorly read. The lector can change that by practicing the readings ahead of time.
It is also important to understand the basic meaning of the passages you read. There are many good commentaries available online and at your Catholic bookstores. Keep in mind that the Bible was originally shared orally; it was distributed, not in writing, but by word of mouth. The lector continues this tradition.
At St. Mary’s, we use an online self-scheduling system. Lectors look at the list of Masses and sign up for the dates and times they wish to read. If a you sign up but are unable to fulfill a commitment, please remove your name from the schedule and send an email to the lector list asking for someone to consider signing up in your place. Please consider this your responsibility.
The house of God is a sacred space deserving respect at all times. The Holy Sacrifice of the Mass is the heavenly banquet and we should always dress accordingly, as if we’re participating in a very important occasion. Whenever one is scheduled to read, attire should be formal and professional; no jeans, t-shirts, or strapless or low-cut tops are allowed. As a leader in the parish community, the lector bears a special responsibility to set a good example for the others preparing for Mass.
The Basilica of Saint Mary
310 South Royal Street
Alexandria, VA 22314
313 Duke Street
Alexandria, VA 22314
Monday-Friday: 9:00am – 5:00pm