The Ministry of Lector to be Conferred on Friars of the Franciscanum
On Sunday December 10th, during the 10:30 Mass in the Basilica, the Ministry of the Lector will be conferred on some of the simply professed friar-students of the "Franciscanum", the Friars house of study in Assisi.
The Conventual Franciscan friars who will receive the ministry of lector are: Friar Diego Canino of the Custody of Calabria, Friar Fabio Agostini and Friar Pietro Carta of the Italian Province of St Francis of Assisi, Friar Giacomo Mangano of the Province of Sicily, Friar Gianluca Catapano of the Province of Puglia , Friar Nicolas Abu Anny of the Custody of the East and the Holy Land and Friar Riduan Mondéjar Pérez of the Mission of Cuba. The celebration will be presided by Fr. Custodian, Friar Mauro Gambetti, OFM Conv.
The formal ministries in the Church for the "non-ordained" are two: one having reference to the Book and the other, to the Altar – the ministry of Lector and of Acolyte. The first, lector, has very ancient roots and its role is to highlight concretely the intimate relationship between the Word of God and the Liturgy. Every liturgical action not only presupposes listening to the God’s Word, but it is also the privileged "place" in which this Word resounds today in the Church. In fact, there is no liturgical action that does not involve a "liturgy of the Word". Through the Word, proclaimed in the Christian assembly, God speaks to his people and Christ proclaims his Gospel once again.
By way of the ministry of Lector the word ‘of then’ - far away in time and in space - becomes the word for today, that is, it becomes a new "revelation event" – Christ speaks to his people today.Hence the importance of the reader as a minister who, starting from the written word – in a certain sense, from the ‘dead- word – transmits it to the oral stage, that is, he ‘resurrects’it, makes it ‘alive’. From the ministry of Lector derives the task of proclaiming the Word in the Liturgy, as well as a series of other tasks, including educating children and adults in the faith and preparing them for the reception of the sacraments; furthermore, lectors are empowered to bring the missionary proclamation of the gospel of salvation to those who do not yet know it. In order to be commissioned to assume the role of lector, the young friars needed adequate preparation. In fact, during the rite of commissioning the presider exhorts the friars as follows: "It is therefore necessary that, as you announce the Word of God to others, you must know how to welcome it yourselves with full docility to the Holy Spirit; you must meditate on it every day in order to acquire an ever more lively and penetrating knowledge of it; but above all, you must bear witness with your lives to our Savior Jesus Christ ». The young friars who will receive the ministry of Lector are invited to conform themselves to Jesus, so that they will become not only “speakers” of the Word, but also men in whom the Word comes to life, that is to say, they must become credible witnesses of Jesus, the Incarnate Word of God.