Wednesday, June 29 ~ Thirteenth Week in the Season of Ordinary Time
Solemnity of Saints Peter and Paul, Apostles
Holy Gospel: Matthew 13:16-19 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.”
Meditation: Today the Apostles Peter and Paul are commemorated for tirelessly working for the spread of the gospel, not only to the people of Israel, but to all the nations as well. They risked their lives in the process and gladly poured out their blood in loyalty to their Master, our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. As Paul so eloquently stated in his second epistle to Timothy: “they courageously fought the good fight, finished the race, and kept the faith” (2 Timothy 4:7). So it is worth asking: How firm is your faith in the Lord Jesus Christ?
Prayer: Grant, we pray, O Lord our God, that we may be sustained by the intercession of the blessed Apostles Peter and Paul, that, as through them you gave your Church the foundations of her heavenly office, so through them you may help her to eternal salvation. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son, who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.
Contemplation: When Jesus asks: “Who do people say the Son of Man is?” he poses that question to each of us. Our response is twofold – first by our words, and second by our actions – the way we live our lives. We can proclaim Christ as our Lord and Savior, and share in his saving mission through word by sharing the message found in sacred scripture. But most important is to put the teachings of sacred scripture into action and “living” the word fully in our daily lives. If you are firm in your faith, this is something that occurs naturally. If you find yourself hesitating out of “fear” or “embarrassment” then there is work to be done in making sure that when you proclaim to be a Catholic, a Christian, a disciple of Christ, that you mean what you say and say what you mean. Don’t insult Jesus with lip service – prove to him and to the world that you are a true disciple by living the Word day in and day out.