We may sometimes wish that we could meet the disciples, maybe even be them, with Jesus walking amongst us and giving us his wisdom.
But it was difficult for the disciples. For them, they did not have the centuries of traditional that we can draw upon. They had not heard the teaching of Jesus before; they were not soaked in the Gospel as we are.
We are the successors of these disciples. We live that Petrine Declaration deep in our hearts. We are the Church. We help to build the Church by our presence and witness. We can learn from the traditions of the Church, and in that sense we have many more tools and benefits than the disciples did.
So, what will we do to develop the Kingdom of God? How well shall we live up to the name ‘Peter’, on who’s rock Christ built his Church? We, as his spiritual successors, have a solid challenge to continue building the Church. Let us look to the Gospels for our inspiration and, through prayer, realise our full potential as the children of God.
A reading from the Gospel according to Matthew 16:13-20
When Jesus came to the region of Caesarea Philippi he put this question to his disciples,
‘Who do people say the Son of Man is?‘
And they said,
‘Some say he is John the Baptist, some Elijah, and others Jeremiah or one of the prophets’.
‘But you,’ he said ‘who do you say I am?’
Then Simon Peter spoke up, ‘You are the Christ,’ he said ‘the Son of the living God’.
‘Simon son of Jonah, you are a happy man! Because it was not flesh and blood that revealed this to you but my Father in heaven. So I now say to you:
You are Peter and on this rock I will build my Church.
And the gates of the underworld can never hold out against it. I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven: whatever you bind on earth shall be considered bound in heaven; whatever you loose on earth shall be considered loosed in heaven.’
Then he gave the disciples strict orders not to tell anyone that he was the Christ.
The Gospel of the Lord.
Praise to you, Lord Jesus Christ