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Wednesday, February 22, 2006

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Chair of St. Peter

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

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"Jesus replied, 'Blest are you, Simon son of Jonah! No mere man has revealed this to you, but My heavenly Father. I for My part declare to you, you are 'Rock,' and on this rock I will build My Church.' " —Matthew 16:17-18

Only the Catholic Church would celebrate a chair. We don't need much of a reason for a party. The chair represents the authority of the Pope and the unity of the Church. We believe Jesus chose Peter as leader of the Church and intended that others succeed Peter as its leader. We rejoice in this order because it is God's way of protecting, guiding, and unifying us.

Although Satan is the master of deception and we seem too weak to deal with his attacks, we remain confident because the Lord will tell us what to do. He knows how to guard His people and "there is no snatching out of His hand" (Jn 10:29).

The Lord has chosen the Pope as the main instrument of His protection, guidance, and unity. We celebrate God's provision for the Church's needs. To benefit fully from God's plan, we should:

  1. pray for the Pope daily,
  2. read what he writes,
  3. speak well of him, and
  4. obey him.

Let's submit ourselves to God-given authority and receive God's gifts.

Prayer:  Jesus, may I do it Your way.

Promise:  "God's flock is in your midst; give it a shepherd's care...When the Chief Shepherd appears you will win for yourselves the unfading crown of glory." —1 Pt 5:2, 4

Praise:  St. Peter glorified God in his life and was blessed to glorify God in his martyr's death.

Rescript:  †Most Reverend Daniel E. Pilarczyk, Archbishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, August 16, 2005

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