Brothers and Sisters in Christ, In Sunday’s Gospel, Jesus asks His disciples “who do you say that I am?” It is Simon who replies, “You are the Christ, the son of the living God.” Jesus then changes Simon’s name to Peter, a word that means rock. Jesus tells Peter that He wills His Church on Peter and gives Peter the keys to the kingdom of heaven. Peter has a special role in Jesus’ Church to be the shepherd of the whole flock after Jesus ascends to heaven. This role was passed on to Peter’s successors who we have come to call the Pope. The Pope has a special role of authority over the Church and her members and we look to the Pope for leadership and unity in our faith. It is important that we see ourselves as part of a universal Church as well as the local Church, where the Bishop is our leader. Let’s pray for our Pope and our bishops each day that God may direct and guide their decisions.
Sacred Heart and St. John the Baptist