The Roman Catholic Church continued the Jewish tradition of reading scriptural texts aloud. With illiteracy rampant however, the early church guaranteed a qualified reader by creating the position and requiring special education. Originally, all the lessons in the liturgy, including the Epistle and Gospel, were read by the lector who was typically in one of the minor orders preparing for priesthood.
In 1972 the office was named a ministry by Pope Paul VI, in his Motu Proprio Ministeria quaedam (effective Jan 1 1973), and was opened to Laymen.
To proclaim the Word of God and humbly serve as an instrument of God’s grace so that the Scriptures may come alive for those who hear it, and to constantly strive to proclaim the Word of God effectively by growing in our understanding of the Scriptures.
Who can join
Any Catholic age 16 years and onward.
Breaking of the Word sessions – Held weekly to correspond to each weekend’s readings. Each lector is to attend the session corresponding to the weekend which the rostered duty falls under.
General meetings – Monthly and generally on Thursdays at 8 pm (not on a fixed date).