St. Paul has much to say in his letter to the Romans about those who bring the Word of God to others. “For ‘Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.’ But how can they call on him in whom they have not believed? And how can they believe in him of whom they have not heard?… ‘How beautiful are the feet of those who bring the good news’” (Romans 10:13-15).
We are called to share the Good News of the Gospel and Bible in our daily lives and actions. Within our own parish, there is a special way of sharing the Word of the Lord with others. Lectors proclaim the Word of God for all to hear. For Valerie Standing, the coordinator of this ministry, nearly 40 years of being a part of this ministry has been a big part of her life.
“I became a lector because God never blessed me with a voice to sing,” Valerie says. “When I moved here from England, I was welcomed here and I wanted to give back. Now being a part of this active group of lectors has been a blessing for me.”
Training for the Lectors Ministry includes a one-on-one session with Valerie, as well as a meeting with Fr. Ace, who handles the training from a liturgical standpoint, such as being in good standing with the church. Valerie handles the training from a practical side — teaching new lectors how to prepare, how to approach the altar, and working to project their voice. Schedules are put together every two months through the scheduling app.
“We all tend to realize that our world is not in a very good place,” Valerie says. “We also know that the only way through is through the Lord and through prayer. When we stand up there, it is a powerful proclamation because we are reading God’s Word. We have to combat the dreadful things in our world and the only way we can do that is to work hard for the Lord.”
The role of lectors is to bring the Word of God to the people. This active participation in the liturgy is an important part of our worship of God in the Mass.
“The active participation in Mass helps us to feel renewed to go out and face the world for another week and come back again,” Valerie says.
Our parish is very family-oriented. With families that have been active through many generations, it is a blessing to see them participating in ministries.
“It is hard when you first start to be comfortable speaking in front of people,” Valerie says. “But our parish is so caring and they want to participate and do something for their fellow parishioners. We have so many prayerful people in our parish and this is one way that you see that.”
Anyone interested in serving as a lector can contact Valerie Standing at firstname.lastname@example.org or 808-281-1749.