2/25 - Reading Aloud

. Posted in 2013 Lenten Readings

“O God, from my youth you have taught me, and I still proclaim your wondrous deeds. So even to old age and gray hairs, O God, do not forsake me until I proclaim your might to all the generations to come. Your power and your righteousness, O God, reach the high heavens.”       [Psalm 71 vs. 17,18 and 19] (NRSV)


In reading recently, I came across the statement that the Koran was scripture that was intended to be recited aloud. We have all seen on TV, classrooms of Muslim boys reciting, loudly, the tenets of their belief and faith.

It got me thinking about our own experiences with the Bible. Certainly, there are times in our corporate worship when the congregation speaks aloud the words of the Psalms as well as other songs and prayers contained in the Scriptures.   In private devotions or as a family the scriptures may sometimes be read aloud.  However I think that much of our Bible reading is done silently.

It has been my privilege to have been a lector ever since the Service Book and Hymnal (SBH) came into being in 1958. In the course of that time the readings of the lectionary have become very familiar to me.  In addition to reading the lessons aloud at the service I have usually practiced the readings aloud. As a singer, I have been aware of the importance of the breath in speaking and in singing and as a means of conveying feeling.

The hymns, many of which are based on Psalm texts, also offer us an opportunity to use our life’s breath to praise and glorify God. I would recommend to all to try reading your Bibles and the texts of hymns aloud in order to add a physical dimension to that mental and spiritual discipline. Join the psalmist as he proclaims:


“I will give thanks to the Lord with my whole heart; I will tell of your wonderful deeds. I will be glad and exult in you; I will sing praise to your name, O Most High.”    (Psalm 9 vs. 1 and 2)

Submitted by Barbara Peacock