Today’s Gospel: Matthew 16:13-19 – Solemnity of Sts. Peter and Paul, apostles
While later in the Gospel, we see Peter’s shortcomings, here, unlike the other disciples, Simon Peter comes up with the right answer — that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of the living God. In turn, Jesus bestows His blessing upon Peter and gives him the keys to the kingdom of heaven and the authority to bind and loose.
When I gave our oldest child a key to our house, it indicated that he was responsible and trustworthy. I trusted that he could carry the keys without losing them and be a responsible steward of our home, including all of our possessions. The keys carry with them a certain amount of freedom, allowing the holder to come and go as he pleases, allowing him and whom he allows to enter while keeping out those who have no business being there.
Peter is given responsibility for God’s household and is the rock on whom the church is built, but Jesus does not make a litany of promises, only that “the powers of death shall not prevail against [the church].” That leaves plenty of room for Peter (and his successors) to make mistakes. We know that Peter would go on to betray Jesus during His passion. And while we’ve been blessed with many saintly popes, all are not so. But Christ’s promise remains.
Am I confident in Jesus’s promise that the Church will prevail, despite attacks and failures from within and without?
Strengthen my faith, Jesus, so that the inevitable disappointments caused by Your human representatives will not shake my faith in You or in Your church.
Copyright 2019 Carolyn Astfalk
Receive CatholicMom.com newsletters in your inbox, including the Daily Gospel Reflection each morning!
* indicates required