Lectors and Commentators


The Lectors and Commentators Ministry, as lead by its Ministry Head, Isa Gutierrez, is for the lay faithful who are willing to grow spiritually and commit themselves to perform their duties and responsibilities specifically in the proclamation of the Word in liturgical celebrations. The Lectors and Commentators ensure that the Word of the Lord is accorded due meaning and significance for parishioners to lead a true Christian life.


(Generally for Pre/Post COVID Conditions)

For the short refresher version, click:
SSAP LeCom Refresher

Updated and Approved on July 6, 2020
by SSAP Parish Priest, Fr. Reu C. Galoy, OFM

WE, the members of SSAP’s LeCom Ministry, were chosen to proclaim the Word of God.

The Word of God is a GIFT to us, it is MOST PRECIOUS, not one word should be lost when we read it.

“We are not free to change prescribed postures to suit our own individual piety, for the Church makes it clear that our unity of posture and gesture is an expression of our participation in the one Body formed by the baptized with Christ, our head.”

As Pope Francis has said: Find Good Readers for Mass

Therefore, WE MUST PREPARE to be an effective reader. If there is anything we need to remember, it is that we COME DISPOSED and PREPARED to declare the WORD OF GOD. LECTORS have a sacred role of bringing the Word of the Lord to life. Christ is present through US in the Word of the Lord.

How can we achieve that in SSAP?

There are 2 verses that we can use as our constant reminder whenever we serve as LeCom:

“If you want to follow me, deny yourself…”

Matthew 16:24

Let us deny ourselves of our own personal styles or preferences and be followers to the DIRECTIVES of the PARISH we CHOSE to SERVE as LeComs.

He must increase, I must decrease.

John 3:30

As in other Parishes, SSAP has its own design on how we can honor the Lord in the celebration of the mass. Let us humble ourselves and submit to SSAP’s design.

Let us be united in the manner we serve. Whether it is in our introduction, carrying of The Book of Gospels, our profound bow, ringing of the bowl, how we say “The Word of the Lord”, when to kneel and rise, let us be uniformed. Stick to the script. Follow our guidebooks, reminders on the ambo, word for word, nothing more, nothing less, no ad lib. Let us be proud of SSAP’s way. If unsure, join a training session for new LeComs or contact our LeCom head.


*These guidelines were designed for pre-pandemic times. Pls. take note of those that are applicable to our current situation. Updates are posted on our SSAP LECOM viber chat group.

PRE-MASS ANNOUNCEMENT (Currently discontinued)
Take Note! Read the pre-mass announcement all at once, (from preparatory to moment of silence) ending with the ringing of the bowl, 3 minutes before Mass starts.

RINGING OF THE BOWL (Currently discontinued, typically performed after pre-mass announcement)
This is the “Call to order” bell. Hit the bell on the side, not the top and wait for reverberation of the sound to die down before striking it again (or use this rythm…bong 23456, bong 23456, bong 23456.)
Bell at the Church entrance is the “Call to procession” bell.

HOLDING OF BOOK OF GOSPELS: (Currently, performed only when Presider chooses to have a Procession before mass.)
At the processional, raise it high enough to SHOW your FACE, SMILE OR SING! SHOW HOW HAPPY YOU ARE that YOU HAD THE HONOR OF CARRYING IT. Tip: Use your pinky finger to support the base of the Book to keep it from slipping from your grip.

In SSAP, we use the PROFOUND bow. We do not genuflect, we do not nod or do head bow, we bow the upper body.

– As soon as we come out of our pew, bow to the altar table before walking up to the ambo.
– As soon as we step down from the ambo, we bow again facing the altar table, before returning to the pew.
– When we pick up the Book of Gospels (as a Sunday Lector) before we join the procession line. Pickup the Book from the altar table, while facing the congregation, adjust the book stand so you can easily return the Book to its stand after the processional, then bow, then get in line for the processional.
*At the end of the processional, keep in mind that the lector is the only one who does not stop at the foot of the steps to the altar, like the rest. You are the only one who walks all the way up the Altar to place the Book of Gospel on its stand at the Altar, then step back a few steps to the side and allow the Presider to lead everyone to a profound bow facing the Book of Gospel.

-Stick to the script, word for word. Avoid relying on memorization to avoid changing the words by mistake.
“Good morning, afternoon or evening! We welcome you as we celebrate the Eucharist today,….” It is NOT “ Welcome, brothers and sisters!…..” nor some other way.

-If it is a Feast or Solemnity, no need to mention the day of the week and liturgical season.
-Do not rely on Presider’s name in the guidebook schedule, verify that it is the correct presider. Introduce the Presider with his name in full, with OFM at the end. (If there is a visiting priest, introduce yourself, request him to write down his name so you do not make a mistake in pronouncing and ask if you need any special introduction to his visit.)

Commentators, READ introduction to the Gospel reading, word for word: “TO HONOR THE GOSPEL, PLS. RISE.” to avoid forgetting the words and avoid ad lib.

Picture5follow his lead and special instructions, even if it goes against these quidelines. If he decides to recite the prayers with you, let his voice be louder than yours, DO NOT COMPETE WITH HIS VOICE. Get to know our Pastoral Team by volunteering at different time slots or taking notes if you happen to attend mass with a presider you have not served with. Notice if he spends time to reflect after his homily or after distribution of communion so as to prepare you when you should go back to the ambo.

In SSAP, there are three LeCom roles you can serve:
1) Lector
2) Commentator
3) LeCom (performing both Lector and Commentator roles) for weekday and Villages’/Condos’ masses.

Lector-Commentator assigned to a mass are partners, making sure you work together and support each other. Even if you have different roles, if one forgets something be ready to back up your partner. Anticipate the unexpected to allow presider to celebrate mass, smoothly.

Tip: Make eye contact with your Presider and your partner every so often, in case one needs something (a misplaced book, eyeglasses). Be a step ahead and think of what the mass or Presider might need. This is important during Christmas time, when the Belen is blocking the Commentator’s view of the Presider, only the lector has eye contact with the Presider.

Both of you should heed our own pre-mass announcements and PARTICIPATE, sing or at least mimic because the congregation follow your lead during mass.

Be a role model so be aware of your actions. Be friendly, whether to the congregation or the participants, get to know your partner, especially at the recession line, make small conversation and look happy serving together. (The Holy Mass is a celebration. We don’t have to look sad or snobbish to look serious or sincere in serving.)

Come at least 30 minutes before your assigned mass, not only to be mentally and spiritually prepared but also to make these necessary preparations:

As Sunday Commentator:
YOU lead the congregation to the sign of the cross, to all prayers, responses, commentaries or announcements, to kneeling and gestures. You coordinate with Presider, lector, ministries, servers involved to make sure mass is celebrated smoothly.
-check guidebook inserts for special instructions and announcements
-check microphone for power, height adjustment while it is “off”
-assign (properly dressed) gift offerors
-ask the choir/cantor, if any:
which “Alleluia” they are singing (preferably no other lyrics besides Alleluia so as to allow us to lead the congregation in reciting the verse before the Gospel) and ask which prayers they will sing to prepare you/lector to omit recitation of those prayers.
*if choir is “Coro de San Antonio”, inform Lector to omit reading entire Responsorial Psalm and participate in mimic singing the response
-during mass, request for more collectors, if needed.
-DO NOT begin reading until all in the congregation are seated.
-introductions to the readings are short but you still have to bring it to LIFE, to prepare the mindset of the assembly for the actual readings.
-stay kneeling throughout consecration, rise after the great AMEN.
-Parish Announcements are to be read after Post-Communion Prayer (to be followed by friars)
-Sambuhay is only your guide for which prayers are included in the mass but actual prayers should be read from the Guidebook, in case of misprints on the Sambuhay.

As Lector:
YOU have a shorter but significant role of bringing LIFE to the readings WITHOUT calling attention to yourself. You are limited to reading from the lectionary the following: both readings, responsorial and psalms, verse before the Gospel (if needed) and from the sambuhay – the Prayers of the Faithful, nothing more, no commentaries nor adlib.
-check microphone for power, height adjustment while it is “off”
-check if ambo has the current Sambuhay and if Daily Missal/Lectionary is on the correct page or readings and any other prayers needed are there. Otherwise, request the Sacristan to provide them.
-check with the commentator if (or directly) the choir/cantor, if any, will sing the psalms aside from the responses for the Responsorial Psalm and what version of Alleluia will be sung to determine if you should read the verse before the Gospel. If the Alleluia has other lyrics aside from Alleluia (or Praise to you Lord Jesus Christ), it is NOT necessary to read the Verse before the Gospel.
-Lectors should only read the Holy Scriptures DO NOT READ anything else other than the Readings, Announcing the response for the Psalms, Psalms, Antiphons from the Lectionary. Eliminate reading – “FIRST READING”, “RESPONSORIAL PSALM”, ‘RESPONSE”, “VERSE BEFORE THE GOSPEL”, etc. It is not necessary to say, “LET THE RESPONSE BE”, instead, go directly to reciting the actual response at the beginning of the Responsorial Psalm. Encourage a response, by looking up at the congregation to let them know you are finished with each verse.
-If you are sharing the ambo with the Presider, put away the Lectionary on the ambo shelf to make way for Book of Gospels brought by Presider for the Gospel reading
-Before Prayers of Faithful, wait for the recitation of the Creed to finish before approaching the ambo and upon finishing your part, stay until you have responded “Amen” to the Presider’s ending prayer. (in sync with Commentator)
-Close Book of Gospels before leaving the ambo

Readings should always be read from the Lectionary, not from the Sambuhay! The Holy Mass is supposed to be celebrated without a missalette. The congregation is supposed to rely only on the Lector’s proclamation. So, Lectors, read as if the assembly is relying on your proclamation alone. The Sambuhay is to be used as a guide for the Order of Mass for the day but actual readings should be read directly from the Lectionary. The SSAP Guide Book should be used by Commentators in conjunction with the Sambuhay for Sunday Masses. It provides complete prayers, accurately, with special instructions and guidelines for the order of mass.
If you have to bring notes to the ambo, use a diary or a binder to carry it.

THE PAUSE! It is an integral part of the celebration, to encourage reflection on the readings.
10-15 SECONDS for Personal Intentions in Prayers of the Faithful

Important Reminders

-The “Lamb of God”, if not sung by the song leader, SHOULD BE INITIATED BY THE LECOM WITHOUT PROMPTING FROM THE PRIEST. As soon as the Presider is finished exchanging peace (reaches for the Host or breaks the Host) start reciting it.
-Gloria, Apostles Creed, Nicenes Creed, Our Father, and other prayers are usually initiated by the Presider and continued by the LECOM but if the Presider decides to recite any of these prayers in its entirety, allow the Presider’s voice to be louder while LeCom’s voice is softer but ready to get louder if Presider suddenly stops.

ANTIPHON: Commentators/Weekday Lecoms read the Antiphon in place of singing during Lent and may be read during Ordinary Times but only if the song has NO LYRICS during entrance procession and during communion. If choir was late for LeCom to coordinate with, then they should know that if the LeCom has read the communion antiphon, they should OMIT songs with lyrics. The Music Ministry should pick choirs or cantors who have attended formation to be aware of these instructions.

OMIT: unnecessary instructions like sit, kneel, stand and announcing headings like First Reading, Responsorial Psalm, etc.


Opening prayers by Presider should end with him saying the actual response but Commentator should repeat.
PRESIDER: …we say, “Lord hear our prayers.”
COMMENTATOR: (leads congregation): “Lord, hear our prayers.”

HAND GESTURE: Use of one or both hands in place of verbal instruction for the congregation to RISE after WASHING OF THE HANDS as Presider starts to say “Pray brethren…”

Be aware of the changes applicable for each liturgical season:

-GLORIA is omitted
-“Alleluia” is replaced by “Praise to You, Lord Jesus Christ, King of endless glory!” SUNG or read
-Verse before the Gospel is read after reading or singing of “Praise to You, Lord Jesus Christ, King of endless Glory.”
-Apostle’s Creed may be used in place of Niceno-Constantinopolitan Creed during Lent and Easter
-Singing is discouraged on weekdays but SSAP has recently made changes to this practice so we follow whatever is decided by The Worship Committee

-Angelus is replaced by Regina Coeli for the 6AM, 12NN and 6PM masses until Pentecost Sunday.

-Gloria is omitted
-Daily Antiphons are different everyday and can be found in the Roman Missal or Pandasal.

Forget One’s Self! Keep it simple.
LADIES: Prescribed LeCom robe that covers all of your inner clothing, including the neckline. Closed-toe, low heeled shoes that are light colored or black (if at all possible), no slippers nor open toe sandals. If necessary, small/simple jewelry or hair accessory.
MEN: Long sleeved Barong or white dress shirt, dark dress pants, dark dress shoes

Several days prior to your assigned mass, practice with the Missalette (all the texts you will read including the Gospel) several times before your assigned mass.
Pray the reading.
Allow the reading to affect you. What is it saying to you. How does it make you feel.
Understand the reading with help from lectorprep.org
If necessary, listen to the audio version of the reading from this site: Audio version of Daily Readings and Psalms. Most importantly, speak to the Lord about it.

-Check the pronunciation or meaning of words you do not know.
-Know which words to emphasize and most importantly, mind the commas, periods, paragraphs and pause clearly, to allow the congregation to reflect and absorb the readings.
-For more impact, you may want to memorize the first and last lines to allow you to make eye contact with the congregation
-Responsorial Psalms are meant to be sung so in the absence of a cantor or psalmist, read this part in a melodic manner.
-Alleluia before the Gospel and great Amen after the doxology are meant to be sung so sing these, if at all possible. As instructed by the Apostle St. Paul (cf. Col 3:16) Singing is the expression of the heart’s joy (cf. Acts 2:46) If you don’t feel confident singing, turn off your mic while singing to encourage the congregation to sing along with the choir. However, during weekdays, avoid any singing especially during Lent.
-Prayers of the Faithful are to be read the way you would say your own prayers to the Lord.

We need not look gloomy to show we are solemn. SHOW ENTHUSIASM THROUGH OUR FACE AND VOICE.


There are no Missalettes nor Sambuhay for weekday masses except for Simbang Gabi masses and other special feasts. Beginners may purchase a Daily Roman Missal or Pandasal from St. Paul’s bookstore or use iMissal app to create their own weekday missalettes for guidance by inserting the readings and psalms in this Order of Mass Leaflet.

Refrain from carrying your notes, missalette or Sambuhay to the ambo, insert them in a diary or a leather binder.

Entrance and Communion Antiphons, found in the Sunday Sambuhay or missalette, are the same antiphons used for daily masses during Ordinary Times. Daily Entrance and Communion Antiphons for Advent and Lent Season or other special occasions can be found in the Daily Roman Missal, Pandasal or iMissal app since Sambuhays or missalettes are not always available on weekdays.

Scroll down for links to the daily readings/psalms and other helpful tools and websites.

Presider or Presiding Priest – a priest that leads the faithful or congregation in prayer, to give praise to God and celebrate the Eucharist.
Sacristy – Room in the church where a priest prepares for a service, where vestments and other things used in worship and other church furnishings, sacred vessels, including a Tabernacle. It is also where hard copy of missalettes or Sambuhays, Lector’s workbook, preparation prayer, guidebooks, Ordo and Lectionary are kept.
Ordo – small book, containing the liturgical calendar, found in the SSAP sacristy, for Lectors’ guidance on the day’s occasion and readings.
Ambo/pulpit – a raised stand but solemn and dignified, used by lectors and presiders for the Liturgy of the Word; it symbolizes the presence of the Word of God; where the SSAP sacristans set the Daily Roman Missal (for weekday masses), Lectionary (for Sunday masses), green book with prayers of the faithful and other prayers or announcements to be used.
Lectern – raised stand located on the congregation floor used for Sunday masses by the song leader and commentator, where the sacristans set the Commentator’s guidebook with the latest announcements.
Sunday Mass Lector or Anticipated Mass Lector – a Sunday Lector strictly proclaims the Word of the Lord; a Lector who reads the 1st reading, Psalms, 2nd reading and Prayers of the Faithful at the ambo.
Sunday Mass Commentator or Anticipated Mass Commentator – a Lector who coordinates between presider, song master or choir and co-lector, assigns gift offerors before mass begins, reads pre-mass announcements, introduction, commentaries, leads the faithful in the responses and prayers except those sung by Choir/Cantor and reads parish announcements before final blessing or as instructed by the priest/presider.
Weekday Lector – A Lector who performs both lector and commentator tasks during weekday masses (Monday until the Saturday noon mass).
Daily Roman Missal – book of all readings for all occasions and liturgical calendar year including antiphons, set on the ambo by SSAP sacristans for Weekday Masses used by weekday Lectors and Priest Presiders. See video on how to use it.
Lectionary – book of all readings for all occasions and liturgical calendar year WITHOUT antiphons, set on the ambo by SSAP sacristans for Lectors’ use for Sunday Masses.
Book of Gospels – a book of Gospel readings used by the Priest Presider for all Sunday masses (including anticipated masses on Saturdays). It is the book carried by the Lector in the processional.
Pandasal – book published by St. Pauls Philippines, containing order of mass and Liturgical readings and antiphons for every day of the year.
Sambuhay – dated missalettes published by St. Pauls Media, containing order of mass for Sunday masses and special occasions, particularly the prayers and readings to be used for the day.
Guide Book – a guidebook found on the lectern used by Sunday commentators, containing all versions of prayers and responses, used together with the Sambuhay.
Antiphon – a psalm or verse read by the LeCom after introducing the presider and before communion, IF there is no singing.
Verse before the Gospel – a verse read by ALL, lector, commentator and the faithful IF sung-Alleluia is NOT accompanied by other words.
Processional – refers to the entrance march of the entourage led by the altar servers, followed by the Eucharistic Ministers, followed by the Lector with the Book of Gospels held high, facing the ALTAR, and finally, the Priest Presider.
Recessional – refers to the march after the mass ends in the same order as the processional march only if the Presider decides to march.
Magnifikids – celebration of mass for children under the age of 7 years old, held at the parish center, 10:30 am Sundays

Helpful Sites
General Instructions of the Roman Missal (GIRM)
Official Website of Lectors and Commentators of Archdiocese of Manila
Daily Readings and Psalms
Audio version of Daily Readings and Psalms
Current Sambuhay Missalettes
Biblical Words Pronunciation Guide
Audio Bible Pronunciation Tool
Helpful Lector Preparation and Lector’s Notes Website
General Instruction for Serving at Mass
English Pronunciation Exercise
What are the Only Two Occasions to Look at the Congregation


2019 LeCom Manual

We invite SSAP parishioners or regular churchgoers, who live/work in the area and would like to volunteer their time, to substitute for lectors who go on vacation especially during summer/holidays and for the early morning masses and Sunday tagalog masses.

Submit the following documents and signed forms:
Baptismal/Confirmation/Marriage Certificate
New LeCom Commitment Form
New LeCom Personal Data Form
You may submit completed forms with required documents to the attention of a LeCom chairperson or email it to jeannieb@ssaparish.com.
We will respond to arrange the following:
-Meeting with a screening committee member and later with the Parish Priest.
-Attendance to both LeCom Basic Seminar and Doctrinal Formation.
-Schedule training and serve as co-lecom at a Saturday noon mass.
-Commissioning rites by our Parish Priest during a Sunday mass at SSAP.