> The Feast of St. Mark the Evangelist
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Annually on April 25
The Feast of St. Mark the Evangelist
Almighty God, who by the hand of Mark the evangelist have given To your Church the Gospel of Jesus Christ the Son of God: We thank you for this witness, and pray that we may be firmly grounded in its truth; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.
From Holy Women, Holy Men:
A disciple of Jesus, named Mark, appears in several places in the New
Testament. If all references to Mark can be accepted as referring to the
same person, we learn that he was the son of a woman who owned
a house in Jerusalem, perhaps the same house in which Jesus ate the
Last Supper with his disciples. Mark may have been the young man
who fled naked when Jesus was arrested in the Garden of Gethsemane.
In his letter to the Colossians, Paul refers to “Mark the cousin of
Barnabas,” who was with him in his imprisonment. Mark set out with
Paul and Barnabas on their first missionary journey, but he turned
back for reasons which failed to satisfy Paul (Acts 15:36–40). When
another journey was planned, Paul refused to have Mark with him.
Instead, Mark went with Barnabas to Cyprus. The breach between
Paul and Mark was later healed, and Mark became one of Paul’s
companions in Rome, as well as a close friend of Peter’s.
An early tradition recorded by Papias, Bishop of Hieropolis in Asia
Minor at the beginning of the second century, names Mark as the
author of the Gospel bearing his name. This tradition, which holds
that Mark drew his information from the teaching of Peter, is generally
accepted. In his First Letter, Peter refers to “my son Mark,” which
shows a close relationship between the two men (1Peter 5:13).
The Church of Alexandria in Egypt claimed Mark as its first bishop
and most illustrious martyr, and the great Church of St. Mark in
Venice commemorates the disciple who progressed from turning back
while on a missionary journey with Paul and Barnabas to proclaiming
in his Gospel Jesus of Nazareth as Son of God, and bearing witness to
that faith in his later life as friend and companion to the apostles Peter
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