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Saturday, February 22, 1997

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Chair of St. Peter

1 Peter 5:1-4
Psalm 23
Matthew 16:13-19

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one for all, and all for one

"I for My part declare to you, you are 'Rock,' and on this rock I will build My Church, and the jaws of death shall not prevail against it. I will entrust to you the keys of the kingdom of heaven." —Matthew 16:18-19

The Lord wants us to be one as He and the Father are one (Jn 17:21). "It was in one Spirit" that we "were baptized into one body" (1 Cor 12:13). The source, center, and culmination of our faith is receiving and being in unity, union, and Communion with the Lord and each other.

The Lord has provided practical means for us to become one. He has given us His representative on earth, the Pope, as a center of unity (see Mt 16:18-19). Just as receiving Holy Communion is not merely a spiritualized abstraction but actually receiving the body and blood of Jesus, so our unity in the body of Christ is more than a spiritual attitude. Our unity is based on a relationship with the Pope in love, submission, and obedience. We celebrate this relationship on today's feast of the Chair of Peter. We are one with and in Christ. We are one with and through the Pope. We are one with each other. Let us celebrate our unity and the papacy.

Prayer:  Father, make us one by Your standards and in Your ways.

Promise:  "Be examples to the flock, not lording it over those assigned to you, so that when the chief Shepherd appears you will win for yourselves the unfading crown of glory." —1 Pt 5:3-4

Praise:  Robert changed his mind about the Church by reading the Pope's best-seller.

Reference:  (Consider ordering for your parish our monthly bulletin insert, John Paul Speaks. Know and obey what the Pope is teaching.)

Nihil Obstat:  Reverend Ralph J. Lawrence, August 1, 1996

Imprimatur:  †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, August 6, 1996