Preparing to Proclaim the Word in the Liturgy
Before beginning the reading look at the congregation, establishing eye contact. With your eyes, say “hello, please listen to what I have to say”. Then commence the reading with the title: “A reading from the prophet Isaiah”, or whatever the title is.
Because the title is so easy to remember it should be easy to continue to look at the congregation as you announce it clearly and deliberately, engaging the people’s attention.
Having done that, begin to read/proclaim the text. Make eye contact on the most important phrases and on the words and phrases that reveal the key emotion. Allow the emotion to be reflected in your eyes and face.
When you look up at the congregation use your finger to keep your place: a distracting interruption if you lose the place could spoil the reading.
The skill of making eye contact will develop with practice and experience, but even a first-time reader should be able to look deliberately (not a fleeting upward glance) at the congregation for the introduction and especially the ending: “The Word of the Lord”.