Problem with in-game messages

There have been many times where a message appears on screen during a level, but it only pops up for a second, giving me barely any time to read it. Because of this I have gotten stuck and confused in custom maps because I didn’t get a chance to read the instructional message that flashed on screen. Is there a way to make the in-game messages last longer?

Not by regular means. However, there are several source ports that dump the centerprint messages to the console where you can read them. http://quakespasm.sourceforge.net/download.htm, for example. Tip: if you play on a high resolution and the text is tiny, you can increase the centerprint text size with scr_menuscale 2 and the console text size with scr_conscale 2.