EASTER VIGIL — Year B

First Reading: Genesis 1:1 – 2:2

The beginning of the book of Genesis.

In the beginning, when God created the heavens and the earth, the earth was a formless wasteland, and darkness covered the abyss, while a mighty wind swept over the waters.

Then God said, “Let there be light,” and there was light.  And God saw that the light was good.  God then separated the light from the darkness.  God called the light “day” and the darkness “night.”  Thus evening came, the morning followed – the first day.

Then God said,  “Let there be a dome in the middle of the waters, to separate one body of water from the other.”  And so it happened:  God made the dome, and it separated the water above the dome from the water below it.  God called the dome “the sky.”  Evening came, and morning followed – the second day.

Then God said, “Let the water under the sky be gathered into a single basin; so that the dry land may appear.”  And so it happened: the water under the sky was gathered into its basin, and the dry land appeared.  God called the dry land “the earth” and the basin of the water “the sea.”  And God saw that it was good.  Then God said, “Let the earth bring forth vegetation: every kind of plant that bears seed and every kind of fruit tree on earth that bears fruit with its seed in it.”  And so it happened:  the earth brought forth every kind of plant that bears seed and every kind of fruit tree on earth that bears fruit with its seed in it.  And God saw that it was good. Evening came, and morning followed – the third day.

Then God said, “Let there be lights in the dome of the sky, to separate day from night.  Let them mark the fixed times, the days and the years, and serve as luminaries in the dome of the sky, to

shed light upon the earth.”  And so it happened: God made the two great lights, the greater one to govern the day, and the lesser one to govern the night.  Then, too, God made the stars, setting them in the dome of the sky, to shed light upon the earth, to govern the day and the night, and to separate the light from the darkness.  And God saw that it was good.  Evening came, and morning followed – the fourth day.

Then God said, “Let the water teem with an abundance of living creatures and on the earth let birds fly beneath the dome of the sky.”  And so it happened: God created the great sea monsters and all kinds of swimming creatures with which the water teems, and all kinds of winged birds.  God saw that it was good and God blessed them and said, “Be fertile, multiply, and fill the water of the seas; and let the birds multiply on the earth.”  Evening came, and morning followed – the fifth day.

Then God said, “Let the earth bring forth all kinds of living creatures: cattle, creeping things, and wild animals of all kinds.” And so it happened:  God made all kinds of wild animals, all kinds of cattle, and all kinds of creeping things of the earth.  And God saw that it was good.  Then God said, “Let us make humankind in Our image, after Our likeness.  Let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, the birds of the air, and the cattle, and over all the wild

animals and all the creatures that crawl on the ground.”

Humankind was created in God’s image;

in the divine image God created them:

female and male God created them.

God blessed them and said, “Be fertile and multiply; fill the earth and be responsible for it.  Have dominion over the fish of the sea, the birds of the air, and all the living things that move on the earth.”  God also said, “See, I give you every seed-bearing plant on the earth, and every tree that has seed-bearing fruit on it to be your food; and to all the animals of the land, all the birds of the air, and all the living creatures that crawl on the ground, I give all the green plants for food.”  And so it was.  God looked at all of this creation, and proclaimed it good – very good.  Evening came, and morning followed – the sixth day.

Thus, the heavens and the earth and all their array were completed.  Since all the work was finished, God rested on the seventh day.

The Word of God recorded in Genesis.

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