Archive for the ‘Lay Readers’ Category

On Saturday, October 30th, the Saint Alban’s Lay Readers held their annual retreat who were joined by readers from Ss. Andrew and Margaret (Alexandria, Virginia), St. David’s (Charlottesville, Virgina); Saint Athanasius/St. Luke’s (Glen Allen, Virginia and re-opening in Goochland, Virginia, respectively) and Saint Matthews (Newport News, Virginia).  The retreatants explored improving their technical skills to improve their ministry, including those “trouble spots” in the Prayer Book rubrics and techniques for improved presentation pf pre-prepared lay readers’ sermons. (Thanks here to Canon john Hollister and Fr. Warren Shaw for providing the grist for the mil!)  As well, the program offered meditations on the deep human need for corporate worship in Christ’s Holy Catholic Church and the functions of prayer, as well as the theological underpinnings of the Daily Offices.

Because many lay readers also serve as adult acolytes, the retreatants reviewed serving basics and altar service at the Low Mass.  Copies of Some Notes on the Conduct of Corporate Worship, and Ritual Notes were on hand for purchase for those who wished to add these useful references to their personal libraries. (A few copies remain for those unable to attend.)

The readers also shared fellowship and compared notes over an excellent breakfast and lunch in the dining room of the Masonic Home of Virginia, and, most importantly, the participants joined in Morning and Evening Prayer and the Holy Communion.  The next retreat will again be open to all diocesan lay readers and, tentatively, will include training for prospective readers, serving basics at High Mass, singing and chant, and meditations on spiritual and theological themes.

Our thanks to Mr. Ed Owen of St. Alban’s and the staff of the Home for the use of the beautiful chapel, arranging a private dining room and for the warm hospitality shown the retreatants.

Pictured:  Some of the lay readers at the conclusion of the conference.

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As we aproach Advent and the relicensing of lay readers, it is the custom of the parish to sponsor an off-site lay reader’s retreat.  This year St. Alban’s will open the retreat to all interested lay readers from throughout the diocese. 

The tentative schedule is as follows:

0730 Morning Prayer

0800 Breakfast and Fellowship

0830 A Brief Meditation

0900 Conducting the Morning Prayer Service-a refresher

1000 Break

1015 Reading and assisting at Mass-including a review of serving basisc and the role of the subdeacon

1130 Break and preparation for Mass

1145 Mass

1215 Lunch and Fellowship

1300 A Brief Meditation

1330 Sermon Delivery-Techniques and Critique

1415 Break

1430 Conducting Evening Prayer/Evensong (“Fear of Chant Overcome”)

1545 Evensong


Copies of “Serving Basics” and “Ritual Notes” will be ordered for those who wish at cost.  Please place orders no later than 20 October to insure delivery. 

This year, the retreat will take place in the Chapel of the Masonic Home of Virginia 4101 Nine Mile Road, Richmond, Virginia 23223-4999 http://www.mahova.com/  Breakfast and lunch will be provided at a cost of $16.00, and attendees wishing to arrive the previous evening should contact St. Alban’s at 804-262-6100.

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