Guidelines for Readers
The intent of these guidelines is to assist the Readers by making certain membership expectations explicit. You can download a copy of these guidelines here.
The First Reader conducts the Sunday services and the Wednesday evening meetings. The Second Reader assists the First Reader in conducting the Sunday services.
The Readers shall thoroughly study and adhere to Article III of the Church Manual, “Duties of Readers of The Mother Church and of its Branch Churches."
1. The position of Reader requires a metaphysical focus on the needs of our
congregation. This focus should also be cognizant of the needs of our
2. Readers shall disengage from church committees and other church
responsibilities while serving as Reader.
3. Readers shall meet together at least once a week.
4. Both Readers must sign the calendar in their Reader’s Room each service to
provide the Treasurer with a written record, so that payment may be issued
5. If absent, the Reader must secure a substitute from the Substitute Readers
list. Each Reader is responsible for confirming a substitute at least one
week before the service or meeting in question, unless the absence is
unplanned. Each Reader should notify the Clerk and their Board contact
when a substitute is scheduled. Substitute readers shall be offered the
opportunity to read in alphabetical order except when the absence is
unplanned. Readers should advise substitutes how to check microphone
volumes during rehearsal. The Clerk is responsible for providing a list of substitutes to the Reader, including current information on how to contact them. Guidelines for how to select a substitute are included on the list. You can find the roster of substitutes here.
6. Wednesday evening meetings should allow at least a half hour for
7. Coordinate with the musicians and ushers regarding various cues for
conducting the service. This is especially important on Communion
Sunday, when the Order of Services is different, also when substitute
musicians are performing.
8. The benediction should be an unconditional blessing of the congregation.
1. The First Reader is responsible for selecting appropriate hymns for Sunday
Services and Wednesday Evening Meetings. Frequent use of hymns by
Mary Baker Eddy is recommended.
2. The musicians shall be given sufficient notice about hymn selections. This
is accomplished by submitting the selections to the Clerk and the musicians
by phone or email. Selections for Sunday shall be supplied by the preceding
Thursday. Selections for Wednesday shall be supplied by the preceding
Shortly after new Readers are elected, the Board Contact shall ensure that they
have the following:
1. A set of books (Readers’ choice): Bible, Science and Health (First Reader
only), words-only Hymnal (First Reader only) and markers are to be ordered by
the Reading Room at the church’s expense. If Readers opt to read from other forms of the Lesson-Sermon published as such by the Christian Science Publishing Society, the Readers will receive a one-time reimbursement up to an amount equal to the price of Readers-edition books and markers. When the Readers present their receipts or invoices for these alternate forms, the church treasurer will reimburse them.
2. Current copy of the church Bylaws.
3. Current copy of the church directory.
4. Current Substitute Readers list.
5. Church key.
6. A sum of $50.00 will be budgeted yearly for the purchase of miscellaneous
materials used for reading.
7. The sum of $300.00 will be budgeted and available at least 30 days prior to
the beginning of each Reader’s term to pay for lessons from a professional
reading coach. Total of $600. It is expected that newly elected Readers
begin coaching prior to the first Sunday as Reader, or as soon as possible.
1. To offset expenses incurred while reading and as a token of appreciation
from the membership, the Readers shall be compensated financially and
receive two weeks of paid vacation.
2. The Readers are paid by the Treasurer on the first of each month for the
previous month’s services. Payment does not involve any withholding;
therefore the Readers will receive a 1099 income-tax form and are expected
to comply with all applicable tax laws.
3. All employees, including Readers, are required to read and adhere to our
church's "Anti-Harassment and Equal Employment Policy."
Notes for Second Reader
1. The Second Reader assists the First Reader in conducting the Sunday
2. If the Correlative Scripture according to I John 3: 1-3 is to be read from a
translation other than the King James Version of the Bible, the Second
Reader will notify the Board Contact as to which translation will be used.
3. Silent prayer shall be long enough to provide for a thoughtful prayer for the
Guidelines Regarding Notices
Purpose for Notices
1. Core notices inform the public of the regular ongoing activities of this church as well as membership opportunities.
2. Ad hoc notices inform the membership of lectures, meetings, events, and items
directly concerning church functions.
All notices are compiled and approved by the Board in accordance with Bylaw Article IV, Sect 6 – C. Invitations to membership in The Mother Church and our Branch Church should each be read twice a month.
Schedule of Notices
Core Notices to be read each week for Sunday services or Wednesday meetings:
1. Notice for Sunday Service – read Wednesday
2. Notice for Sunday School – read Sunday and Wednesday
3. Notice for Wednesday Meetings – read Sunday
4. Notice of Child Care – read Sunday and Wednesday
5. Notice for Reading Room – read Sunday and Wednesday
Core Notices to be rotated regularly each month between Sunday services and
1. Mother Church membership – twice a month
2. Branch Church membership – twice a month
Ad Hoc Notices to be read consecutively two Sundays and two Wednesdays:
1. Notice for membership meetings
2. Notice for Church office and Reading Room holiday office closures
3. Lectures sponsored by this church shall be announced from the desk for four
services prior to the lecture. The announcement should include the date, time, and location for the lecture and whether childcare will be provided. All lectures
sponsored by other branch churches and in-formal groups shall be announced for
two services prior to the lecture, provided sufficient information is available.
4. Notice for Daylight Saving Time changes two times prior to the changes.
5. Additional announcements may be made at the discretion of the Executive Board.
(Guidelines Rev. December 2016 )