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Homilies Navchetana is an initiative of Navchetana Communications, Bhopal, India. We have been sending the Sunday and daily homilies last four years. We are grateful to you for your cooperation and encouraging comments. Navchetana is committed to spread the Good News of Jesus Christ through modern media and performing arts. Through our Web TV, audio and video productions and stage programmes we take the Gospel message to the ends of the earth. Make a donation and be a part of this noble mission.

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Homilies :: Latin Rite
Saturday of the 12th week in the Ordinary Time Download This Homily

JUNE 29, 2019


Saturday of the 12th week in the Ordinary Time


Acts 12:1-11
Psalm 34:2-9
2 Timothy 4:6-8, 17-18
Matthew 16:13-19

 

When Jesus went into the region of Caesarea Philippi 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." 

 

Apostles Peter and Paul


We remember today Saints Peter and Paul who guided the early church just after the time of Jesus. Both died as martyrs for the faith in Rome, in the early 60’s, just thirty years after the death of Jesus. Peter was crucified upside down in the courtyard to the left of St. Peter’s Basilica and Paul was beheaded between Rome and the sea, in a place now called Tre Fontane. Peter was buried in the nearest cemetery which was on top of Vatican Hill and St. Peter’s Basilica was later built on top of Peter’s tomb, the main altar being directly on top of his tomb. Paul was also buried in the nearest cemetery and the Basilica of St. Paul was later build on top of his tomb, the main altar being directly on top of his tomb.


Each of these two saints is important for different reasons. Peter is important because he was the first Pope and kept the church united which was growing very rapidly in the years following Pentecost. In the first years after Pentecost it was Jews who accepted Jesus as the Savior and so the early church was a very Jewish church. But as time went on Paul began to preach also to non-Jews, the Gentiles as they were called. All of us are Gentiles. His preaching was very successful and he brought huge numbers of non-Jews into the church, so much so that the number of Jews in the church was greatly outnumbered by non-Jews. It is because of Paul that we are now in the Church. So both Peter and Paul had very important tasks in the early church, Peter maintaining the unity in the church which during his lifetime had already spread throughout the Middle East and Europe, and Paul who taught the Jews that Jesus is the fulfilment of their Old Testament hopes and taught the non-Jews that Jesus is the Saviour. Whenever you see statues of Peter and Paul, usually Peter is holding a key, symbolizing his duty as head of the church, and Paul is holding the Bible, symbolizing his preaching.


Both Peter and Paul received their vision of the Church in different occasions in different ways. Paul got that on his way to Damascus. He had the letter from the Sanhedrin to slaughter all the Christians at Damascus. He had a long list of names. He was like the modern day jihadi, ready to kill anyone in the name of religion. There he was on his horse, in a hurry, because he wanted to arrive there before the news of his coming arrived. Suddenly there was thunder and lightning. He fell from the horse and he heard a voice that said, “Saul, why are you persecuting me. “ Paul was confused and asked, “Who are you?” The voice said, “I am Jesus, whom you are persecuting” Paul would have mentally checked the list with him, but Jesus was already dead. Soon he realized that Jesus is identified with the people. He got the vision then and there and declared later: “Jesus is the head and we are the members.” He knew that the Church is the Mystical Body of Jesus.


Peter got the vision in another way. After the resurrection Jesus asked him, “Peter do you love me?” Three times Jesus asked the same question and thrice he answered “yes” and the third time with yes he said, ‘Why do you ask Lord, you know that I love you.’ All the time Jesus said him, ‘If you love me take care of others.’ He got his vision. He understood what Jesus had told earlier, “I am the wine and you are the branches.” He is the head and we are the members. We form one body.


This is the vision we share with Peter and Paul. We are one. The whole humanity is the body of Christ. If one is pained we are pained. If they are sick, hungry and miserable, we are sick, hungry and miserable. The feast of Peter and Paul reminds us this reality.


Homilies Navchetana Apps, the first of its kind is produced and published by Navchetana Communications, Bhopal, India to assist the clergy to preach the World of God and also as a handy spiritual resource for the people of God to reflect on the daily spiritual passages at their convenience. You can download this on your Android phone from Google play and you can see the Gospel reflections of the whole year. The size of this app is just 2.5 MB. We welcome your suggestions and contributions to server you better.

May God Bless you

Fr. James M L CMI

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Homilies Navchetana is an initiative of Navchetana Communications, Bhopal, India. We have been sending the Sunday and daily homilies last four years. We are grateful to you for your cooperation and encouraging comments. Navchetana is committed to spread the Good News of Jesus Christ through modern media and performing arts. Through our Web TV, audio and video productions and stage programmes we take the Gospel message to the ends of the earth. Make a donation and be a part of this noble mission.


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