"And so I say to you, you are Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church." Simon got a new name after his profession of faith. As soon as he declared to Jesus, "You are the Christ, the Son of the living God," Jesus renamed him with a title that means "rock." And with that name he gave Peter the mission to be a solid foundation upon which he would build his church. Not Peter's church. Not James or Paul's church. Not Martin Luther's or John Calvin's or anybody else's. This is Jesus' church, the church of Christ himself, that we call the Catholic Church.READ MORE
"O woman, great is your faith! Let it be done for you as you wish." This woman was an outsider. She was a Canaanite, not an Israelite, and as such she would have been considered ritually unclean. But she approached Jesus nonetheless and asked for his help. And Jesus used this opportunity to teach his disciples an important lesson.
In the verses directly before today's passage, Jesus had told Peter that what defiles a person comes from the heart, not from ignoring external purity practices. Then, Jesus traveled with his disciples from Galilee to the region of Tyre and Sidon where they were much more likely to encounter someone considered to be unclean.READ MORE
"Peter got out of the boat and began to walk on the water toward Jesus. But when he saw how strong the wind was, he became frightened." How can we describe Peter? At once faithful and fearful, his jumbled responses remind us that he was no spiritual superman, well-intentioned though he may have been. Peter wanted to believe, and in fact showed a great deal of confidence in Christ, but the temptation to doubt was strong enough to knock him off his feet, literally.READ MORE
"This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased; listen to him." Oh, to be on that mountain! What a priceless experience for Peter, James, and John. If they had ever doubted, if they wondered whether Jesus was really who he said he was, their confidence surely got a boost on the day of the Transfiguration. Before their very eyes, Jesus' divine beauty radiated gloriously while the two ancient prophets also appeared in miraculous manner. And to top it off, the voice of God the Father spoke from the heavens and confirmed that it was all true: Jesus really is the Son of God!READ MORE