The Sunday gospel readings during Lent are arranged as follows:
The first and second Sundays retain the accounts of the Lord’s temptations and transfiguration, with readings from all three Synoptics.
On the next three Sundays, the gospels about the Samaritan woman, the man born blind, and the raising of Lazarus, have been restored in Year A. Because these gospels are of major importance in regard to Christian initiation, they may also be read in Year B and Year C, especially in places where there are catechumens.
Other texts, however, are provided for Year B and Year C:
- for Year B, a text from John about Christ’s coming glorification through his cross and resurrection
- for Year C, a text from Luke about conversion.
On Passion Sunday (Palm Sunday) the texts for the procession are selections from the Synoptic Gospels concerning the Lord’s triumphal entrance into Jerusalem. For the Mass the reading is the account of the Lord’s passion.
The Old Testament readings are about the history of salvation, which is one of the themes proper to the catechesis of Lent. The series of texts for each year presents the main elements of salvation history from its beginning until the promise of the New Covenant.
The readings from the letters of the apostles have been selected to fit the gospel and the Old Testament readings and, to the extent possible, to provide a connection between them.
The Weekdays of Lent follow differing themes:
The readings from the gospels and the Old Testament were selected because they are related to each other. They treat various themes of the Lenten catechesis that are suited to the spiritual significance of this season. Beginning with Monday of the fourth week of Lent, there is a semi continuous reading of the Gospel of John, made up of texts that correspond more closely to the themes proper to Lent.
Because the readings about the Samaritan woman, the man born blind, and the raising of Lazarus are now assigned to Sundays, but only for Year A (in Year B and Year C they are optional), provision has been made for their use on weekdays. Thus at the beginning of the Third, Fourth, and Fifth Weeks of Lent optional Masses with these texts for the gospel have been inserted and may be used in place of the readings of the day on any weekday of the respective week.
In the first half of Holy Week the readings are about the mystery of Christ’s passion. For the chrism Mass the readings bring out both Christ’s messianic mission and its continuation in the Church by means of the sacraments.
For more information on the readings follow these links.