Sunday of The Word of God

On September 30, 2019, on the liturgical memorial of St. Jerome, Pope Francis announced that the Third Sunday in Ordinary Time would be celebrated as the Sunday of the Word of God. This year it will fall on Sunday, January 24, 2021.  In the past Catholics were not encouraged to reflect upon the Word.  This was unfortunate as the Word is “something alive and active” (Heb. 4:12) and guides us along the road of discipleship.  Pope Francis through this initiative is being faithful to the call of the Second Vatican Council with its renewed appreciation of the importance of the Word of God.  The Council underlined the significance of the Liturgy of the Word saying that Christ “is present in his word since it is he himself who speaks when the holy scriptures are read in the Church” (Vat. II, Constitution the Liturgy, 7).

In “normal” times this Sunday would be an opportunity to highlight the Word and how it is proclaimed.  This can still be done through our various virtual platforms.  One very positive development made possible through social media is the number of Apps that are available to help people draw closer to the Word.  Many of these Apps have audio content and can be used at home for quiet reflection, while you are in the car, or out for your daily exercise.  As part of this year’s Sunday of the Word, we present some Apps below that might be helpful for those who wish to explore the Word a little further.  These are just a few examples, but there are many more available.  The good news is that most of them are free to download! – This Website/App presents the various books of the bible and has audio and visual effects that help to enter into the Word.  The dramatisation of the Word could be helpful for children too.

Bible-Catholic Study (Ignatius Press) – This App presents the daily readings and has helpful study notes to accompany them.

Laudate – This App has comprehensive reflections on the Word for each day.  It has a great deal of other content that could be helpful for Catholics, such as prayers, how to go to confession, etc.

Pray as you go – This App has reflections upon the Word each day and has an audio facility that invites you into a quiet reflective space for a few minutes each day.  It has various other features such as online retreats and the well known “Examen,” a method to help you review your day and discover where God was in your day.

Jesuit Prayer – Daily inspiration – this App gives a short reflection/thought on the Word, mostly the Gospel passage each day.

Universalis – This App has a full and comprehensive outline of the Word, the readings for each day throughout the year etc.  It also has the Prayer of the Church and other features worth exploring.