It is 29th June 2015. We celebrate the Solemnity of Sts. Peter and Paul, the Apostles. St. Peter died a martyr’s death in 67, being crucified head down in Nero’s gardens on the Vatican Hill. St. Paul suffered martyrdom and was beheaded outside the gates of the city of Rome in the same year. The readings are from Acts 12:1-11; 2 Timothy 4:6-8, 17-18; and the Gospel from Matthew 16:13-19. Our first reading from the Acts of the Apostles tells of the release of St Peter from the prison before Herod could put him to death. The Responsorial Psalm prays, “The angel of the Lord will rescue those who fear him.” (Ps.33:5). In the second reading, St Paul tells Timothy that he has been able to preach the Good News because he had God at his side to give him power and to guide him. “I have completed well; I have finished the race; I have kept the faith.” (2 Tim.4:7). In the gospel, Jesus makes Peter the head of the Church and tells him that nothing will ever prevail against the Church. St. Peter confessed his faith in Jesus publically, “You are the Messiah, the Son of the living God.” (Mt.16:16) However ordinary person we can be, God wants us to do the extra-ordinary work of God in the world. In God’s hand we can all become heroes and heroines, when we are willing to surrender and suffer for God. These two great heroes of faith were old men when they were martyred. Age and intellectual calibre are not the only criteria to be a witness for Christ. We need to be willing to proclaim Christ in every given situation. Peter’s public confession of Jesus made him a different person from others and Jesus could trust him. “I tell you, you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church…” (Mt.16:18). Can the Lord trustingly tell us the same word to each one of us today? May the Lord bless you and have a good day.

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