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Daily Catholic Question

How are the Sunday readings selected?

Our three-year cycle of Sunday readings uses Matthew in Year A, Mark in Year B and Luke in Year C. The First Sunday of Advent, December 3, 2000, begins Year C. The Gospel of John is used each year during the Easter season and during Year B since the Gospel of Mark is shorter than the others.

The Gospel readings are chosen first; Sunday’s first reading is coordinated with it. The second reading is continuous from the previous Sunday, almost always on a different theme.

Weekday Masses have a single cycle of Gospel readings. All four Gospels are used at weekday Masses each year. The first reading on weekdays is either Year I (odd-numbered years) or Year II (even-numbered years). Weekday readings for Advent and Lent are the same each year.

Although the Lectionary (book of readings) is the same for Roman Catholics worldwide, small differences from country to country exist. For example, Italian Catholics celebrate Epiphany on January 6 while U.S. Catholics celebrate this feast on the first Sunday after January 1.

A reading can omit a few verses. This usually provides greater clarity but can raise problems about context.

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Monday, October 8, 2012
Daily Catholic Question for 10/7/2012 Daily Catholic Question for 10/9/2012


First Martyrs of the Church of Rome: There were Christians in Rome within a dozen or so years after the death of Jesus, though they were not the converts of the “Apostle of the Gentiles” (Romans 15:20). Paul had not yet visited them at the time he wrote his great letter in 57-58 A.D.. 
<p>There was a large Jewish population in Rome. Probably as a result of controversy between Jews and Jewish Christians, the Emperor Claudius expelled all Jews from Rome in 49-50 A.D. Suetonius the historian says that the expulsion was due to disturbances in the city “caused by the certain Chrestus” [Christ]. Perhaps many came back after Claudius’s death in 54 A.D. Paul’s letter was addressed to a Church with members from Jewish and Gentile backgrounds. </p><p>In July of 64 A.D., more than half of Rome was destroyed by fire. Rumor blamed the tragedy on Nero, who wanted to enlarge his palace. He shifted the blame by accusing the Christians. According to the historian Tacitus, many Christians were put to death because of their “hatred of the human race.” Peter and Paul were probably among the victims. </p><p>Threatened by an army revolt and condemned to death by the senate, Nero committed suicide in 68 A.D. at the age of 31.</p> American Catholic Blog People are not perfect. But God does not only call upon great saints to reveal his love for the world. He also calls the broken and desperate. We are all called to act as God’s light in this darkening world.

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