Reflection for reading of the day Aug 7 “You are Peter”

Jesus went into the region of Caesarea Philippi
and he asked his disciples,
“Who do people say that the Son of Man is?”
They replied, “Some say John the Baptist, others Elijah,
still others Jeremiah or one of the prophets.”
He said to them, “But who do you say that I am?”
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.”
Then he strictly ordered his disciples
to tell no one that he was the Christ.

From that time on, Jesus began to show his disciples
that he must go to Jerusalem and suffer greatly
from the elders, the chief priests, and the scribes,
and be killed and on the third day be raised.
Then Peter took Jesus aside and began to rebuke him,
“God forbid, Lord! No such thing shall ever happen to you.”
He turned and said to Peter,
“Get behind me, Satan! You are an obstacle to me.
You are thinking not as God does, but as human beings do.”

Pope Francis is a gift to the Church. Pope Francis is Peter. We are called to trust that the Holy Spirit is inspiring him to lead the Church.  Francis is a very different pope than Pope Benedict. The Church is neither liberal or conservative. Congress is seeking to pass a resolution honoring Pope Francis. The funny thing about it is that 221 democrats voted for the resolution and only 19 of the GOP. If congress had voted for a resolution 3 years ago honoring Pope Benedict it probably would have been 221 republicans and 19 democrats for it

Pope Francis spoke these words soon after he was elected Pope, “What the Church needs most today is the ability to heal wounds and to warm the hearts of the faithful; it needs nearness, proximity. I see the Church as a field hospital after battle. It is useless to ask a seriously injured person if he has high cholesterol and about the level of his blood sugar! You have to heal the wounds. Then we can talk about everything else. Heal the wounds, heal the wounds…And you have to start for the ground up.”

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