The Word of the Lord: Reflections on the Sunday Mass Readings for Year A

The Word of the Lord: Reflections on the Sunday Mass Readings for Year A

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The Catholic Lectionary guides us through the liturgical year, presenting Old and New Testament readings that together reveal God’s unfolding plan for our salvation. In The Word of the Lord: Reflections on the Sunday Mass Readings for Year A, biblical scholar Dr. John Bergsma provides commentary on each Sunday’s unique presentation of readings.

Whether you are a homilist seeking insight into the meaning of difficult scriptural passages or a pew Catholic desiring a deepened understanding of the readings you hear at Mass, The Word of the Lord serves as an invaluable guide.

This volume includes commentaries for:

  • Readings for the Season of Advent
  • Readings for the Season of Christmas
  • Readings for the Season of Lent
  • Readings for the Season of Easter
  • Readings for the Season of Ordinary Time
  • Readings for Solemnities of the Lord in Ordinary Time


John Bergsma is Professor of Theology at the Franciscan University of Steubenville. A former Protestant pastor, Dr. Bergsma has authored several books on Scripture and the Catholic faith, including Jesus and the Dead Sea Scrolls: Revealing the Jewish Roots of the Church and A Catholic Introduction to the Bible: Old Testament with Brant Pitre. Dr. Bergsma speaks regularly for parish missions, diocesan conferences, clergy convocations, and other events nationally and internationally. He and his wife Dawn reside with their eight children in Steubenville, Ohio.



“Over the past several years, many priests have found in John Bergsma’s Scripture commentaries a great resource both for their own prayer and for Sunday homilies. Now we have his cogent, scholarly, and timely reflections on the Sunday readings gathered together in one book for a liturgical year. This volume will benefit both priests and laity alike in preparing for and getting the most out of Sunday’s sacred text. May it be the first of many!”

Very Rev. Paul D. Scalia
Episcopal Vicar for Clergy, Diocese of Arlington


“John Bergsma has devoted years to thinking through how to apply the Sunday readings to the life of ordinary believers, first as a Protestant pastor and then as a Catholic Old Testament professor. His insights into the unity of the Old and New Testaments have been sought by many a homilist and Bible study leader. This book will be a go-to resource for anyone seeking guidance on how to preach and teach from the Lectionary.”

Michael P. Barber
Professor of Scripture and Theology, Augustine Institute Graduate School of Theology


“John Bergsma has done us all a great service: He not only helps us to understand the context and historical meaning of the readings, but also helps us to reflect on why these passages are relevant to our lives today. I will most definitely be keeping this book handy to help me prepare my heart—and the hearts of my listeners—for Mass each week.”

Anna Mitchell
Host/Producer of the Son Rise Morning Show on EWTN Radio


“From his profound knowledge of biblical texts and extra-biblical sources, Dr. Bergsma navigates us through the scriptural, historical, and archaeological context of the Sunday readings and uncovers the rich meaning that is interwoven among them. Each Sunday’s commentary is insightful and to the point. This book will prove invaluable to preachers—in fact to any Catholic who wishes to encounter the Mass readings with greater attention and understanding.”

Fr. Carter Griffin
Rector, Saint John Paul II Seminary, Archdiocese of Washington D.C.


“As a priest who is responsible for pastoring many parishes and delivering homilies at multiple sites, this Sunday Scripture guide enables me to focus on one idea in order to bring alive God’s Word. Since Dr. Bergsma motivates me, he makes it easier for me to inspire my parish family.”

Fr. Jay Donahue
President and Founder of “Renew the I Do” Marriage Ministry

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