The way books are handled during the Mass is also symbolic of their importance. For example, the Book of Gospels is the only book allowed to be carried in procession. This is true even of the Lectionary (the book containing all the readings) which should never be carried in procession. This book is placed on the altar at the beginning of Mass. Note the connection: Chris is present in several privileged forms during the Mass, the most august is in the Eucharist and also in His own words at the proclamation of the Gospel. How appropriate it is then that the altar and Gospel book are so linked.
The book may only be elevated slightly, not up over the head as is the practice in so many places. The book should not be elevated higher than the Eucharist is elevated at the consecration. And while the Book of Gospels is important it is not in the printed form that Jesus is present but in the proclamation. So the mere presence of the book is not cause for adoration as the Eucharist would be. That is why the book is not even elevated when the deacon or priest says, “The Gospel of the Lord.” It is not the book that is special but the words that were just proclaimed.
The book is still treated with reverence however. Therefore it may be put in a place of honor after the reading is proclaimed – usually on some sort of stand.
The book does not leave with the exiting procession. The word is to be in our hearts now and we take it with us as we do the Eucharist.