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Wednesday, February 22, 2006

The Daily Gospel

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Today the Church celebrates : The Chair of St Peter, apostle Commentary from Saint Augustine : “Your name shall be Peter” (Jn 1:42)

First Letter of Peter 5,1-4.

So I exhort the presbyters among you, as a fellow presbyter and witness to the sufferings of Christ and one who has a share in the glory to be revealed. Tend the flock of God in your midst, (overseeing) not by constraint but willingly, as God would have it, not for shameful profit but eagerly. Do not lord it over those assigned to you, but be examples to the flock. And when the chief Shepherd is revealed, you will receive the unfading crown of glory.

Psalms 23,1-6.

A psalm of David. The LORD is my shepherd; there is nothing I lack.
In green pastures you let me graze; to safe waters you lead me;
you restore my strength. You guide me along the right path for the sake of your name.
Even when I walk through a dark valley, I fear no harm for you are at my side; your rod and staff give me courage.
You set a table before me as my enemies watch; You anoint my head with oil; my cup overflows.
Only goodness and love will pursue me all the days of my life; I will dwell in the house of the LORD for years to come.

Holy Gospel of Jesus Christ according to Saint 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 Messiah, 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."

Copyright © Confraternity of Christian Doctrine, USCCB

Commentary of the day :

Saint Augustine (354-430), Bishop of Hippo (North Africa) and Doctor of the Church Sermon 190

“Your name shall be Peter” (Jn 1:42)

“You are ‘Rock’ [Peter], and on this rock I will build my church.” This name Peter is given to him because he was the first to lay the foundations of faith among the nations and he is the indestructible rock on which rest the foundations and the whole of Jesus Christ’s edifice. He is called Peter because of his fidelity, whereas according to the word of Saint Paul, the Lord received this same name because of his power: “They drank from the spiritual rock that was following them, and the rock was Christ.” (1 Cor 10:4) Yes, the apostle who was chosen to cooperate in his work deserved to share a same name with Christ. Together, they built the same edifice. Peter planted and the Lord gives the growth; it is also the Lord who sends those who have to give it water (cf. 1 Cor 3:6f.).

As you know, beloved brothers, starting from his own faults, the blessed Peter was raised up at the time when his Savior was suffering. After he denied the Lord, he became the first with him. In weeping over the faith which he had betrayed, he was made more faithful, he received a greater grace than the one he had lost. Christ entrusted his flock to him so that he might lead it like the good shepherd, and he who had been so weak now became a support for everyone. He who had been questioned about his faith had fallen, and now he had to set up the others on the unshakeable foundation of faith. Therefore he is called the foundation stone of the Churches’ piety.

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