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The Last Gospel is the passage from the Gospel according to St. John in chapter i, verses 1 to 14 inclusive, where Jesus is described as the Logos. It is so named because it is part of the concluding rite of the low Tridentine mass[1] of the Roman Rite.

Immediately, after the blessing, the priest goes to the Gospel side of the altar. He begins with the Dominus vobiscum as at the proclamation of the Gospel of the Mass. But, since he reads from the altar card, he makes a sign of the cross with his right thumb on the altar rather than on the Gospel text before signing his own forehead, lips, and chest. At the words Et Verbum caro factum est (And the word became flesh), the priest genuflects.

The text of the Gospel is perhaps best known for its opening lines:

In principio erat Verbum, et Verbum erat apud Deum, et Deus erat Verbum... (In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God...)[2]

References and Sources

  1. Adrian Fortescue (priest) (1909). "Gospel in the Liturgy." The Catholic Encyclopedia. New York: Robert Appleton Company. Accessed 2008-07-13.
  2. Congregation of Mary Immaculate Queen (1998-2004). Ordinary of the Mass: Postcommunion, Blessing, Last Gospel. Spokane, Washington: Mount Saint Michael's Parish. Accessed 2008-07-13.