Teen Lectors – Sunday Mass
Thank you for participating as a lector! These notes are to help you to prepare for your role during the Mass. Please check with the Celebrant if you have any questions before Mass begins, and be ready to be flexible—these are only guidelines for what usually happens.
Prepare for your scheduled Mass by finding the first and second readings in the St. Joseph Missal or at the United Council of Catholic Bishops’ web site at http://www.usccb.org/bible/liturgy/index.cfm. Please remember that some Sundays have more than one possible reading, so you should check with the Celebrant when you arrive at church just to be sure.
Arrive at church at least 15-30 minutes before Mass (5:30 for the 6:00 Mass.) Go to the sanctuary and sign in. Check to see that the lectionary is set for the correct readings and that the announcements and Prayer of the Faithful are in place, then go back to the sacristy. When the Celebrant tells you (usually just before Mass begins,) go to the brown ambo and read the opening announcement, then walk to the back of the church to join the procession.
The server with the cross goes first, followed by servers with candles, then the lector and Eucharistic Ministers. At the foot of the altar steps, all the participants bow; the lector then goes directly to the area near the white ambo and stands for the beginning of Mass.
First and Second Readings
After the Celebrant has said the opening prayer and sits down, go to the white ambo and read the first reading. When you are finished, sit down while the psalmist sings the psalm (from the ambo or the choir.) After the psalmist is finished, go back to the white ambo and read the second reading. When you are finished, go back and stand next to the chair during the gospel; after the gospel turn around and go down the back steps and sit in the front lector pew (near the white ambo) for the homily. That pew is reserved for you and other lectors, or you and your family if you are the only lector.
Prayer of the Faithful
If there is no Deacon, go back to the white ambo at the end of the Creed. Wait for the Celebrant to say the opening prayer, then begin. Return to the front pew after the Celebrant says the end of the prayer.
Announcements at the end of Mass (ask the Celebrant if he wants you to do this!)
After communion, when the Eucharistic Ministers have returned all the vessels to the tabernacle, go to the chair behind the brown ambo and sit until the Celebrant stands for the closing prayer, then stand up. After the prayer he will pause; go to the brown ambo and make the announcements, then stand back near the chair for the closing blessing.
Follow the server with the cross and the servers with the candles and go down from the altar to the main aisle; turn and face the altar. After Father bows to the altar and genuflects to the tabernacle, you and the Eucharistic Ministers bow as well; then turn and walk behind the cross and candles to the back of the church. When you reach the back of the church, stand on either side of the cross, facing it and the Celebrant; after he bows to the cross he will dismiss you.
IMPORTANT: If you will not be able to attend a Mass for which you are scheduled, please try to find a substitute by calling or emailing the other lectors (an updated list of lectors with emails and phone numbers will be sent to you with each new schedule.) We also send a reminder email a week before so you have time to find a substitute if you need one; just “Reply all” to the reminder and all lectors will see your request.
You will be assigned a mentor before we put you on the regular schedule for Mass. Your mentor will be a teen who has been reading at the 6:00 Mass, usually someone who is about to graduate that year. At first, we will ask you and your mentor to share readings at a Mass or two that he or she is scheduled for. When you start on your own Mass schedule you can contact your mentor, Mary Pobedinsky or one of the Celebrants if you have any questions about your duties as a lector.
It is also a good idea to watch the lectors at any Mass you attend, to see how different reading styles can make it harder or easier to understand the readings.
Ambo – the two podiums on either side of the altar. The white marble ambo is used for the First and Second Readings, the Gospel, the Prayer of the Faithful and sometimes the Homily. The brown ambo near the tabernacle is used for opening and closing announcements.
Celebrant – the priest who says the Mass; he is in charge of who does what and when!
Lectionary – Book containing the Mass readings for the Lector. There is a version for Sundays (Cycles A, B and C) and one for Daily Masses (Cycles I and II.)
Roman Missal – Book used by the Celebrant at Mass.