Readings for Monday February 22, 2010
Feast of the Chair of Saint Peter, Apostle
First Reading: 1 Peter 5:1-4
Responsorial Psalm: Psalm 23
Gospel: Matthew 16:13-19
When Jesus went into the region of Caesarea Philippi he asked his disciples, “Who do people say that the Son of Man is?” They replied, “Some say John the Baptist, others Elijah, still others Jeremiah or one of the prophets.” He said to them, “But who do you say that I am?” Simon Peter said in reply, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.” Jesus said to him in reply, “Blessed are you, Simon son of Jonah. For flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but my heavenly Father. And so I say to you, you are Peter, and upon this rock I will build my Church, and the gates of the netherworld shall not prevail against it. I will give you the keys to the Kingdom of heaven. Whatever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven; and whatever you loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven." (Mt 16:13-19)
Today we celebrate the feast of the Chair of Saint Peter, the chair which represents the authority left by Jesus to Peter ... and to whomever else has oversaw our Church as the Pope. I can still remember before I became Catholic, how I was one of those people who just thought that it was completely ridiculous and unnecessary that the Church had a Pope. Not to mention that the idea of Papal Infallibility seemed equally ridiculous and untrue. But it was a funny thing that once I really started looking into this matter, I came across the above reading from Matthew, and I really started realizing (and having to admit) that maybe there is something to this whole Pope thing. The more that I investigated, the more that I realized that not only was the Chair of Saint Peter a legitimate position, but also such a needed one as well. Since the beginning of the Church, we have been blessed to have a Pope who has helped to guide the people in matters relating to faith. Let's face it, while the bible is a complete, it does not specifically address every issue that we come across, so it is helpful that we have such a strong servant, inspired by the Holy Spirit, who will help guide us in the gray areas of life.
Take a moment to read from Isaiah 22:22; "I will place the key of the House of David on his shoulder, when he open, no one shall shut, when he shuts, no one shall open." Let us praise and thank God for giving us the Chair of Saint Peter so that we are never lost, and that we have yet another voice that says to us "listen to Him."
Father above, we thank you and praise you for the gift of this day. Lord, thank you for all that you have given us in this life and for all that we are. Lord your love and mercy are so great, help us to never stray away from you. We pray for Pope Benedict XVI and for all of his intentions. We ask this all through Christ our Lord. Amen.