The Sunday of the Word of God in the Roman Catholic Church takes place on the third Sunday in Ordinary Time, during January. In 2022 it will fall on January 23. According to Pope Francis’ Apostolic Letter, it “is to be devoted to the celebration, study, and dissemination of the Word of God.” The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops has created many resources to help celebrate the observance.
Bible Translations on Bible Gateway that Include the Deuterocanonical Books
- Common English Bible (CEB)
- Douay-Rheims 1899 American Edition (DRA)
- Good News Translation (GNT)
- New American Bible (Revised Edition) (NABRE)
- New Revised Standard Version, Anglicised Catholic Edition (NRSVACE)
- New Revised Standard Version, Catholic Edition (NRSVCE)
- Revised Standard Version, Catholic Edition (RSVCE)
Though it’s an annual occurrence, the Vatican says, “A day devoted to the Bible should not be seen as a yearly event but rather a year-long event, for we urgently need to grow in our knowledge and love of the Scriptures and of the risen Lord.”
An icon of the encounter with Jesus on the road to Emmaus is the official logo for the worldwide celebration of the Sunday of the Word of God.
The colorful icon shows the resurrected Christ holding in his left hand a scroll, which is “the sacred Scripture that found its fulfillment in his person,” says Archbishop Rino Fisichella, president of the Pontifical Council for Promoting New Evangelization.
By Jesus’ side are two disciples: Clopas and his wife, Mary. They both fix their gaze on Christ while Clopas holds a stick to indicate “a pilgrimage,” the archbishop says. Mary is holding one hand upward and with her other hand seems to be touching the Lord, reaffirming that he has fulfilled the ancient promises and is the living Word that must be proclaimed to the world.
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Holding the stick in one hand, Clopas’ free hand is pointing the road ahead, which all disciples are called to take in order to bring the Good News to everyone, Archbishop Fisichella says. The star overhead symbolizes evangelization and the “permanent light” that guides their journey and shows them the way.
The feet of all three are depicted as being in motion, representing that the proclamation of the Risen Christ cannot be accomplished by “tired or lazy disciples” but only by those who are “dynamic” and ready to find new ways to speak so that sacred Scripture may become the living guide of the life of the church and its people, according to the Archbishop.
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