In order that the service of the Word might be effective, all lectors are expected to be prepared for their ministry. Preparation should be spiritual, scriptural, and practical. Spiritual preparation involves prayer over the text and reflection on its message. Scriptural preparation involves understanding the text and interpreting it sufficiently so as to evoke a response from the assembly. Practical preparation involves mastering difficult words, learning the right pronunciations and practicing the delivery of the text aloud, ideally in the presence of someone who is able to critique the delivery. It is unacceptable to rush into the sacristy just before Mass to “look at the readings” (Introduction to the Lectionary for Mass #55).
Lectors for each Sunday should strive to be part of the group that meets with the homilists early in the week, “say, Monday evening to read, pray with and talk about the scriptures for the coming week” (Gather Faithfully Together #58). The readings for every Sunday and weekday of the liturgical year can be found on the website of the United States Catholic Conference of Bishops at: www.usccb.org.
12. Immediate preparation is also expected of all lectors. This requires arriving at least 15 minutes before the liturgy, locating the readings in the Lectionary, arranging the microphone, making sure that the sound system is properly functioning, and attending to any other duties as required by the parish. If the lectors are to read the petitions for the General Intercessions, these should be reviewed before the liturgy begins.