a service of the Vanderbilt Divinity Library
Sarcophagus of Drausin  / 3rd-4th centuries (Click the picture for more information)
For each week, the RCL website has added scriptural reflections based on a featured art image, as well as RCL prayers for worship.
-- Site Tip --
Could you add the liturgical Color of the Day to each week's readings?

Could you add the liturgical Color of the Day to each week's readings?

Each scripture texts page offers a link to the appropriate colors according to denomination -- that link to "Colors" is in a box on the right hand side of the page. We also offer a summary of the Seasons and their Colors that may be helpful:
* Advent - The Season of Expectation - Beginning four Sundays prior to Christmas Day, the season of Advent is a time when the Church looks toward the second coming of Jesus and the eternal hope of Christians in the end of time. The color for this season is either Purple (for royalty) or Blue (for the Virgin Mary).
* Christmas - The Season of Incarnation - For 12 days, from Christmas Day (December 25) through Epiphany (January 6) (inclusive) the Church celebrates the miraculous incarnation of God in the person of Jesus. The color for this season is White.
* Epiphany - This season connects with the Christmas season as a time of beginnings. Beginning with the visit of the Wise Ones, the season includes the baptism of Jesus, the presentation in the temple, the miracle at Cana, and the Transfiguration. The season's color is Green, with the special days using White for their celebration.
* Lent - The Season of Reflection - For forty days (not including Sundays) prior to Easter Sunday the Church reflects on the suffering of Jesus. Together, we approach the cross. Worship during this period is traditionally more subdued and penitential. Many people also fast during the season of Lent. The color for this season is Purple.
* Holy Week - The final week of Lent is called "Holy Week." Often churches that do not typically meet for daily worship will meet every day of Holy Week. At the minimum, they will worship on Maundy Thursday, Good Friday, and Holy Saturday. The color for Holy Week remains Purple, although some churches use Red on Palm Sunday and Maundy Thursday. Some churches also use Black on Good Friday.
* Easter - The Season of Resurrection - For fifty days beginning on Easter Sunday Christians celebrate the miracle of the resurrection of Jesus and the certain hope their own resurrection. The color for Easter is White. This season ends on the Sunday of Pentecost, for which the color is Red.
* Ordinary Time - The Season of Nurture and Growth - The periods of time following Epiphany and Pentecost are referred to as "Ordinary" because their Sundays are numbered in ordinal fashion. The focus of Ordinary Time is on developing a deeper understanding of Christian discipleship. The color for this season is Green (for growth).

As to linking the colors directly to each liturgical day, we have added it to our future enhancements list. One of the complications is that denominations can occasionally differ regarding the use of a particular color. In the meantime, one among several useful resources for liturgical colors is available at http://www.elca.org/Growing-In-Faith/Worship/Learning-Center/FAQs/Liturgical-Colors.aspx.

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Readings for the Coming Week
Proper 7 (12) (June 20, 2021)
  • First reading and Psalm
    • 1 Samuel 17:(1a, 4-11, 19-23), 32-49
    • Psalm 9:9-20
    • 1 Samuel 17:57-18:5, 18:10-16
    • Psalm 133
  • Alternate First reading and Psalm
    • Job 38:1-11
    • Psalm 107:1-3, 23-32
  • Second reading
    • 2 Corinthians 6:1-13
  • Gospel
    • Mark 4:35-41
Table of Readings for the Current Season
Season after Pentecost (May 30, 2021 - November 25, 2021)

UPDATED IMAGES IN SLIDESHOW FORMATS: We continue to update and refresh the PowerPoint and PDF slideshow files. These contain selected texts from each of the Sunday Lectionary readings along with reflective images. Since the images have copyright release for non-commercial use, the slideshows may be freely used in worship and educational settings. The slideshows are also linked via the "SLIDES" links in the box on the right of the scripture text pages. We are interested in your feedback; please contact us with your questions or comments.

BLACK AND WHITE ILLUSTRATIONS: We are now offering black and white art images for each Sunday or Special Day that are specially modified for use in print materials, online worship, or church websites. They are designed for reflection upon the Gospel reading. The only restriction for using the images is that they are identified and used for non-commercial purposes. Please offer feedback, as we continue to develop this tool.

DAILY LECTIONARY READINGS: Daily readings expand the range of biblical reading in worship and personal devotion by providing daily citations for the full three-year cycle of the Revised Common Lectionary. These readings complement the Sunday and festival readings: Thursday through Saturday readings help prepare the reader for the Sunday ahead; Monday through Wednesday readings help the reader reflect on and digest what they heard in worship. You can also find the readings by looking for the "DAILY" link on the Sunday and Special Days scripture text pages. It is in the box on the right side of the screen.

PRINT PDF FORMATS: We offer a wide variety of printable formats that arrange the Lectionary readings for use as a handout, bulletin insert, or Bible study tool. The print PDFs are also linked via the "PRINT PDF" link in the box on the right of the scripture text pages. Please offer feedback, as we continue to develop these tools.

CALENDARS: We offer a calendar feature for Google Calendar, iCal, and Outlook. Just click on the "calendar" icon in the top right corner of any page.

During the Season after Pentecost, the Revised Common Lectionary offers two sets of parallel readings. The first set of "semicontinuous" OT readings follows major stories/themes, beginning in Year A with Genesis and ending in Year C with the later prophets. "Complementary" OT readings follow the historical tradition of thematically pairing the OT reading with the Gospel reading. Whichever approach is chosen at the beginning of Pentecost, the intent is for the remaining Season after Pentecost readings to follow the same approach. In addition, both sets of readings sometimes offer alternate options (indicated by italics): readings that may be used with, or in place of, the standard reading. Finally, note that the psalms for each Sunday after Pentecost are intended to be paired with a particular OT reading (either semicontinuous or complementary).