Feast of the Chair of Saint Peter, Apostle
Reading 1 Pt 5:1-4, Gospel Mt 16:13-19
In today’s reading we have the account of the profession of Peter like yesterday but from the gospel of Mathew. When Peter is moved to identify Jesus with the Messiah – Jesus congratulates him, so to speak, on having allowed himself to be inspired in his answer by the heavenly Father: at last his thinking has been raised onto the properly spiritual plane.
Jesus reveals that he is founding a church – a community of faith and worship – which the powers of hell will not be able to overcome. But community always needs leadership; and to Peter is entrusted the authority of binding and loosing – always associated with a people with whom the Lord has entered into a covenant bond.
Further, our faith requires that we give a personal answer to the question as to who Jesus (the Son of Man) is. It is not enough to quote the Catechism of the Catholic Church or the views of one or another theologian. “But who do you say that I am?” Try to answer not only from the head but from the heart. You might helpfully rephrase the question as: “Who is Jesus for me?” An answer can only be given in prayer.