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Gospel

Solemnity of Saints Peter and Paul, Apostles
MT 16:13-19

When Jesus came into the district of Caesarea Philippi, he asked his disciples, “Who do people say that the Son of Man is?” 

And they said, “Some say John the Baptist, but others Elijah, and still others Jeremiah or one of the prophets.” 

He said to them, “But who do you say that I am?” 

Simon Peter answered, “You are the Messiah, the Son of the living God.” 

And Jesus answered him, “Blessed are you, Simon son of Jonah! For flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but my Father in heaven. And I tell you, you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church, and the gates of the netherworld will not prevail against it. I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven, and whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven.”

Gospel citations come from the New Revised Standard Version Bible: Catholic Edition, copyright 1989, 1993, Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved. Approved by the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops.

Reflection

Maureen McKenney
Assistant Director, Student Development


“But who do you say that I am?”
 
A dear friend of mine describes my communication style as “speaking in truths”—not in the sense that I fully think through everything I say to ensure it is completely accurate and truthful, but rather in the sense that I speak with a conviction that everything I say is fact. Period. While I’d like to believe I have a bit more humility than this description implies, I have to admit, she’s not wrong.
 
In reflecting on today’s Gospel, I found myself certain of one thing: If I were Simon Peter, I would definitely sound like I knew Jesus was the Messiah. But sounding confident and being confident are two vastly different things, and I find myself wondering, would I believe it? Would I have the depth of faith and unwavering conviction to say—as an actual fact—that the man standing in front of me was the Messiah, Son of the living God? Or would I say it out loud, simply to try it on, to consider the possibility, still filled with the hesitation and skepticism of my own faith?
 
If I’m being honest, most days it’s easier to hold on to faith for others than it is for myself—faith in God’s plan, in the inherent goodness of humanity, in the hope of everlasting life. I am only human, after all. Even in my darkest times, however, when my faith seems at an all-time low and the pain and the doubt are overwhelming, one things holds true: there’s always at least a glimmer of faith that shines through. Maybe on those darkest days, I should try saying my faith out loud, until I no longer simply sound confident, but am confident once again.

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Prayer

Father Dennis Strach, CSC 

Lord Jesus, you gave your Church the courageous witness of your apostles, Saints Peter and Paul. True to their teaching, may we always be faithful witnesses to you, who are the Christ, the Son of the living God, Lord forever and ever. Amen. 

Saint

Sts. Peter and Paul, the two pillars of the Church who showed the way to all Christians--pray for us!