Fr Paul Gooley returns and reads from the Gospel of Matthew (16: 13-19) in which Jesus asks his disciples ‘Who do people say the Son of Man is?’ and after some discussion, Peter stands up and say ‘You are the Christ, the Son of the Living God’. Afterwards, Fr Paul shares a little about the lives of St Peter and St Paul who we remember and celebrate today.
As today we celebrate the lives of St Peter and St Paul, Fr Paul says we hear in today’s Gospel a little about St Peter. Someone once said that they love St Peter and when asked why, they said ‘every time he opens his mouth, he puts his foot in it’.
Fr Paul notes that St Peter is not the model of a wise and noble hero but the choosing of St Peter teaches us a lesson. He is not an all wise, all knowing, good, heroic, and wonderful person. Peter is a very ordinary man who makes many mistakes and kicks himself for making those mistakes. The lesson is that the Church is not just for saints, it is also for the weak, the cowardly and for those who are not as brave and heroic as others.
It is the same when we look at the life of St Paul, who started out as a persecutor of Christians and, yet, after his conversion, after his encounter with Jesus he became a passionate missionary and writer. St Paul shaped the very early Church and without him, things would be quite different. But he, too, is an ordinary man.
Fr Paul says today as we celebrate their lives, we ask St Peter and St Paul pray for us!
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