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Ask Fr. Francis: Do I Have to Say, "The Gospel of the Lord"

The following is an excerpt from Fr. Francis Ching, CC answers tough questions about the Catholic faith.

Fr. Francis Ching PortraitQuestion:

When one reads the gospel aloud, must we say “The gospel of the Lord” or ” The word of the Lord” towards the end?

Fr. Francis' answer:

It is quite optional when you are reading the bible in private. The practice of saying that at the end of the reading is liturgical.

“Whenever the Word of God is proclaimed in public, it takes on a different character. It is no longer me reading a text, but the Body of Christ gathered together, and Christ Himself proclaiming the Word, who is Christ the Word Himself.”

So it is Christ the Head proclaihrist the Word to Christ the Body, so that Body by receiving the Word may be transformed to be more like Christ the Head. Hence, proclaiming “The Word of the Lord” at the end solemnizes that reality, and our “Thanks be to God” or “Praise to you Lord, Jesus Christ” signifies that we received it as Christ speaking His Word to us.

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