Has there been any changes in recent history (by recent history I mean like the past 70 years) in how Orthodox Christians conduct a Mass and as to who was allowed to read the Bible?.Like was there ever a time for any denomination of Orthodox Christians when Masses could not be done in the vernacular language and/or the laity were not allowed to read the Bible?.Thank you very much so for your time.
I know of know time when the Church outlawed the reading of the bible but in times past they did discourage it due to the fact that many people were poor readers and many would get wrong interpretations.It was left to the clergy to instruct the faithful in the truths of the bible.
OP was asking about Lectors, who are usually ordained to minor Orders.
Not sure about Orthodox, but it could be the same as Eastern Catholics where it would depend on each parish if there is enough interest from the people that some men would come forward and receive ordination to the minor orders. Otherwise, they’d just get someone from the laity to do it.
In the East the celebration of the sacrifice is called Divine Liturgy. “Mass” is a Latinization that is not used in the East.
Anyone attending is expected to learn the language that is being used by the local eparchy. If it is a Greek liturgy, Greek, or Syrian, etc.
The East had the same difficutly disseminating the bible to the laity as the West, because there was no printing press, all copies of the Sacred Scriptures had to be hand made, usually in monasteries by candlelight. This made bibles very hard to get, and expensive, no matter what language.