Feast of Saint Mark, Evangelist

Greetings in the Name of our Crucified and Risen Lord and Savior Jesus Christ:

Tomorrow, April 25, 2020 is the Feast Day when the Christian Church recognizes Saint Mark the Evangelist.

This post is the first of what I hope is many devoted to the Feast Days that the historic Christian Church observed.  We generally do not formally observe these lesser feasts today, though some churches may when they fall on a Sunday.  I pray that you find this message beneficial in your devotions this day.

Saint Mark is remembered as the lion-hearted evangelist, depicted with his fellow evangelists as the four living creatures of Ezekiel 1 and Revelation 4.  He is often identified with John Mark of Acts and the cousin of Barnabas, with whom he worked in Cyprus to “proclaim the Gospel to the whole creation (Mark 16:15).”  Despite their earlier differences, Mark was reconciled with Saint Paul, who considered him “very useful… for ministry (2 Timothy 4:11).”  Later he worked in Rome (1 Peter 5:13), where tradition has it that he wrote his Gospel from Saint Peter’s sermons before founding the church in Alexandria and facing a martyr’s death.

The verse or theme for this feast is “Alleluia.  The time is fulfilled and the kingdom is at hand; repent and believe in the gospel.  Alleluia.”  It is from Mark 1:15.  The focus for your devotion this day is that the Lord sends His messengers out as lambs in the midst of wolves bearing the message “Peace be on this house.”  Saint Mark does “the work of an evangelist (2 Timothy 4:5)” and “proclaims peace (Isaiah 52:7).”

Old Testament:         Isaiah 52:7-10

Psalm:                        Psalm 146 (antiphon v. 5)

Epistle:                       2 Timothy 4:5-18

Gospel:                       Mark 16:14-20

Collect of the Day:

Almighty God, You have enriched Your Church with the proclamation of the Gospel through the evangelist Mark.  Grant that we may firmly believe these glad tidings and daily walk according to Your Word; through Jesus Christ, our Lord, who lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.  Amen.

Pastor Jim Tuell

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