The liturgical year renews with the first Sunday of Advent, which this year will be on December 2nd. Beginning then, the liturgical focus changes from Saint Mark’s Gospel to Saint Luke’s Gospel since we will be in Cycle C. I thought that it would be beneficial to our souls to appreciate Saint Mark’s Gospel in this pastor’s corner before we move on to Saint Luke’s Gospel. I used the Ignatius Catholic Study Bible as a source for my remarks.
Mark wrote his Gospel for Gentile believers in Rome. He does not give a neat and clear-cut outline but rather reminisces about what he has learned about Jesus. As the narrator, Mark remains tucked behind his story. Two factors suggest that Saint Mark completed his Gospel before A.D. 70. First, Jesus prophesies the imminent destruction of Jerusalem and the temple. This was fulfilled in A.D. 70 when the Romans violently destroyed Jerusalem. Mark makes no mention of this as a past event, instead, he merely quotes out Lord’s prophesy. (Mark 13) Second, Saint Irenaeus writing in 180 AD referred to Mark writing his gospel soon after Peter’s martyrdom.
As we transition from Mark’s Gospel to Luke’s Gospel, I hope that you will continue to have an affinity for Saint Mark. He is the quiet and “only the facts please” gospel writer who inspires us to have a simple faith in Our Lord Jesus Christ.