Thursday, June 28, 2018
FRIDAY, STS. PETER AND PAUL, Apostles
June 29, 2018 – FRIDAY, STS. PETER AND PAUL, Apostles
Vigil: Acts 3: 1 - 10 / Gal: 11-20 / Jn 21: 15- 19.
Day: Acts 12: 1 - 11 / 2 Tm 4: 6 - 8, 17- 18 / Mt 16: 13- 19
Sts. Peter and Paul, Apostles, are the two pillars of the Church: St. Peter as the first Bishop of Rome and St. Paul as the Apostle to the Gentiles. St. Peter was martyred in Rome under Nero, crucified upside down c. 64 AD and St. Paul beheaded by the sword c. 67 AD.
From the 2nd Reading (Day): 2 Tm 4: 7- 8
I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. Now there is laid up for me the crown of righteousness with which the Lord, the just judge, will reward me on that day, and not only me, but all those who have longed for his glorious coming.
GOSPEL READING (Day): Mt 16: 13 - 19
After that Jesus came to Caesarea Philippi. He asked his disciples, "What do people say of the Son of Man? Who do they say I am?" They said, "For some of them you are John the Baptist, for others Elijah or Jeremiah or one of the prophets."
Jesus asked them, "But you, who do you say I am?" Peter answered, "You are the Messiah, the Son of the living God." Jesus replied, "It is well for you, Simon Barjona, for it is not flesh or blood that has revealed this to you but my Father in heaven. And now I say to you: You are Peter (or Rock) and on this rock I will build my Church, and never will the powers of death overcome it. I will give
you the keys of the kingdom of heaven: whatever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven, and what you unbind on earth shall be unbound in heaven."
Sts. Peter and Paul were the key pillars of the Church who moved the Church to become the universal Church that it is today. Both died as martyrs in Rome in witness to their faith in Jesus about thirty years after the death of Jesus: Peter crucified head down where the St. Peter's Basilica stands; Paul martyred by the sword and beheaded where St. Paul's Basilica outside the Walls stands. There is no certainty that their remains are indeed buried under the said basilicas.
In the Gospel accounts, Peter, a fisherman called by Jesus himself, was clearly the leader among Christ's apostles. Chosen by Christ to head his Church, Peter was the first Bishop of Rome. Starting with Jews as the first disciples of Christ and the first members of the Church, the Church soon spread to the Gentiles and the world, through the ministry and preaching of Paul, who as Saul was a former persecutor of the Church.
Though God had chosen a particular people, Israel, to prepare for the Messiah and to receive the Good News, God's Good News was meant for all mankind of all times and places.
These two pillars of the Church had their distinct personalities and gifts. Peter was fiery and impetuous. Though he vowed he was willing to die for Jesus, he betrayed him three times before simple servant-maids. After the resurrection, Peter re-affirmed his love and devotion to the Lord who gave him charge of his Church.
Paul, a Pharisee and well-schooled in Jewish traditions, had been an ardent persecutor of the early Church. He witnessed the martyrdom of the first martyr St. Stephen. Struck down from his horse and made blind, he became the zealous Apostle to the Gentiles.
Sts. Peter and Paul remind us of our own failures and deficiencies and challenge us with their zeal and love of the Lord and of his Church. God calls each of us to be instruments in proclaiming the Good News to the world. We ask them to pray for us that we may live in true love and faithful service of the Lord and his Church.
WE PRAY FOR MTQ DAILY PRAYER INTENTIONS:
Rody G. Bagabaldo
Honey Allen Bagabaldo
Kenneth L. Yao
IN MEMORIAM (+)
National Scientist Perla Santos-Ocampo
Mary Elizabeth Lim Yu (30 Oct 1935 - 29 Jun 1999).
Finally, we pray for one another, for those who have asked our prayers and for those who need our prayers the most.
Have a good day!
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