August 4, 2016
(St. John Vianney, Priest)
Jesus asked the disciples who the people and they thought He was. 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.” Mt_16:13-23
Here we have the institution of the Papal authority in the Church. It all began with Peter. And that “Apostolic Succession” continues all the way to Pope Francis and the College of Bishops. Peter was that ‘rock foundation’ who followed Jesus and taught His Gospel message of Love. He held the “Keys” to God’s Kingdom. Jesus then instituted the Sacrament of Penance, our reconciliation with God through the bishops and priests acting ‘in persona Christi’ in the person of Christ, to cleanse us of our sin by His atoning sacrifice. What an awesome Church we have. What an awesome God we have in Jesus Christ, our Lord and Savior!
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