You will hear quite a bit of Scripture during a service in the Episcopal Church. Rather than simply hearing “The Bible says…” you will hear the words for yourself. At least two readings, one of them being from the Gospels, are read, with three readings being most common. A lectionary is used, which is a schedule of readings that allows the majority of the Bible to be read from over a three-year cycle.
A psalm is often used between the Old Testament reading and the New Testament reading. This might be read aloud responsively between a layperson and the congregation, or in unison. It might be chanted using traditional Anglican, Gregorian or Orthodox chants. A hymn based on the verses of the psalm can also be sung.
The Old and New Testament readings are read by lectors or Eucharistic Ministers. However, the Gospel reading is always read by clergy. This reading is read from the pulpit, or, more typically from the middle of the center aisle. The participation by both laity and clergy shows how important these readings are for all God’s people.