Archive for January 2005

Notes for Lectors

January 30, 2005

“The Lord has given me a well-trained tongue, that I may speak to the weary a word that will rouse them” (Isaiah 50:4)

I. Preparation
o Don’t procrastinate! Give yourself plenty of time (days)
o Begin with prayer
o Read all the readings for your Sunday. Look for the common themes between them
o Focus on your particular reading
o Read silently. Try to understand the message it has for the congregation and how you can make this message clearer through the way you proclaim it
o Practice it aloud (a few times)
o Look up any words you do not understand or know how to pronounce (don’t hesitate to ask James, David, or Father Joe!)

II. Proclamation Techniques
o This is the word of God! You are not reading, you are proclaiming the Good News
o Stand up straight. You don’t have to lean into the microphone – it will pick up your voice.
o Don’t be afraid of silence. Pauses are necessary. The congregation needs them to be able to understand and keep up. Use this as reference:
o Commas: mental “one one thousand”
o Periods and Semicolons: mental “one one thousand, two one thousand”
o End of Reading (before “The Word of the Lord”): One-five one thousand
o Speak up! Don’t let the microphone make you speak softer – it’s important that everyone can hear you.
o Make eye contact with your audience. Know your reading well enough so that you can look up frequently
o Use inflection in your voice – this will help to portray the reading’s meaning as well as keep your audience attentive.

III. Other Important Reminders
o Dress Up! This is an important ministry you have and you want to show the congregation your respect for the Word – so look the part! We’re not talking suit and tie (although we wouldn’t turn you down), but please, no shorts, no sandals, and button your shirts appropriately. Sorry for sounding petty, but it has to be said.
o Arrive ten minutes early. It is important that David and I know that both of the readers have arrived, and it gives you the opportunity to look at the reading in the actual book and make sure the book and ribbon are in the right places.
o First reader: You will process the Book of the Gospels in at the beginning of Mass. You will come after the cross/candles but before Father Joe. Raise the book high to symbolize its importance. Place the book face front in the center of the altar, opening the book slightly so that it can stand better. You SHOULD NOT process the Gospel out at the end of Mass.
o Second Reader: When you have finished your reading and the congregation has responded “Thanks be to God,” please shut the book and place it to the side (evening lectors: please place it on the stone ledge next to the lectern)
o Both Readers: Please bow to the altar on the way to and from the lectern
o Please follow what is stated in the lectionary, the opening of each reading should be, “A reading from the Book of _______” or “A reading from the First Letter of Saint Paul to the ________” Do not make up your own opening.
o Please keep up with the schedules and the emails from David and I. If you cannot make a scheduled mass, please let me know ASAP. It is very important that you make it to your assigned mass.

Lector Coordinator: James Smyth – jms27
Liturgy Director: David Walker – dkw10

What will Harry Potter VI be like?

January 6, 2005

In about VI months, the VIth Harry Potter book will hit bookstores. It will sell M copies per second, I’m certain. My friend Amberdulen has thought of a great way to get ready for this event:

How would Book 6 go if it was written by one of your favorite authors? Post your synopsis as a comment, then link to it in your LJ to see how your friends’ favorite writers would lay out the plot. Let’s see how many we can get!


Book 6 by Ernest Hemingway
In Book 5, Dumbledore lied to Harry about Trelawney’s prophecy. Dumbledore said that either Harry or Voldemort would die at the end of Book 7. Actually, they are both going to die.

Dumbledore still needs to use Harry’s powers to protect the school, however. That means getting him out of Hogsmeade, where he has been living in exile. Each night, he, Ron, and Hermione drink pints upon pints of butterbeer, shed tears for their fallen comrades, and yearn for the happy days before the war against Voldemort ruined their lives.

Ron and Hermione have been having an affair for months now, and Harry is very frustrated. He knows he is a better wand-handler than Ron but never gets to show his stuff. Dumbledore realizes this and sees an opportunity to bring Harry back into the fold. He instructs sweet, innocent Ginny to show Harry what love is and to bring him back to Hogwarts. She succeeds.

One day, Harry, Ron, and Hagrid go on a hunting trip. They bring down a Fellbeast, an extremely large, rare, and evil flying dragon (but not an original one – the Fellbeasts carry the Nazgul in Lord of the Rings). Before they can bring the Fellbeast home and show it to their comrades, however, Grawp seizes the corpse, eats all its innards, and rips the rest of it to shreds. Now, the accomplishment will live only in their memories.

Voldemort and his followers capture Hogsmeade. Dumbledore, knowing that Voldemort has Peter Pettigrew on his side, orders Harry, Ron, and Hermione to blow up the tunnel between Hogwarts and the Shrieking Shack so the Death Eaters will not be able to use it. They accomplish their mission, but Ron, paralyzed by all the spiders crawling in the tunnel, does not escape fast enough. He dies in the blast.

Ron’s death crushes Harry’s world and what’s left of his psyche. Hermione takes up with Draco, whom she does not love, because Draco is very, very wealthy. Ginny is so morose that she can no longer make love to Harry. Our hero tries to find solace in Quidditch, but he no longer wants the Snitch. Instead, he sits on his broom. Staring into space. In the rain.

One day, Harry decides he no longer wants to live. All he wants is vengeance for his friend. That means killing Voldemort, no matter the cost. So, he begins in earnest his training to become a killing machine. His friends never see him smile again.

Will we ever run out of songs to make? And hey, what kind of music do you like?

January 4, 2005

When I was about ten years old, I deduced that there are only a limited amount of musical notes and a limited number of ways to play them. Therefore, some day, the human race would run out of songs. I would no longer find joy in music because everything I’d heard would remind me of something else.

Well, the human race is much more versatile than I expected. I’m still waiting!


Have you ever asked a person what music he liked, and had him answer, “Everything”? I have heard this answer many times. It’s maddening. Of course you like everything; everyone does. Still, you must have a style of music, or a particular band or symphony or musical that is most dear to you. It makes you feel a certain way, or it helped you get through a difficult time in your life, or it reminds you of one of your happiest moments. When someone asks you what kind of music you like, talk about this music. Then you’ll really be communicating.