The Solemnity of Saints Peter and Paul, Apostles
“.....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.”
“.....and I Paul, was rescued from the lion’s mouth. The Lord will rescue me from every evil threat and will bring me to his heavenly
Today we pause to venerate two of the true heavyweights of the Catholic Church, Saints Peter and Paul. As such, we take a temporary respite from the 2nd Book of Kings and Jesus’ teachings via the Sermon on the Mount as taught to us in Matthew Chapter 7 to instead focus on the Readings that characterize and define Saint Peter and Saint Paul and what they mean to our faith foundation and traditions.
These Readings shed light on the path that these heroic and tireless disciples blazed, the men who are considered to be the Apostles to the Jews (Peter) and to the Gentiles (Paul). The Readings chosen are as follows:
Vigil Mass: Acts 3:1-10, Galatians 1:11-20, John 21:15-19
Mass during the day: Acts 12:1-11, 2 Timothy 4:6-8, 17-18, Matthew 16:13-19
These were two imperfect men who, despite their faults, stayed true to their profession of faith. Whether it was Peter who became the “Rock” of our Church or Paul who famously “fought the good fight, finished the race and kept the faith,” they are revered and celebrated today and for all of eternity. They never achieved the rank of CEO, Nobel Prize Winner, Super Bowl MVP or even Doctor of the Church There is no star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame commemorating either of them. Saints Peter and Paul are poignant reminders of that which lasts, that which brings true immortality. These men brought countless souls to Jesus. In the grand, eternal scheme of things, is there a greater accomplishment? They remind us that we too must strive to do the same through our thoughts, actions, words and choices.
It’s been said time and time again that the Saints have been chosen by God to offer their lives in sacrifice as an example to us. “Both share the same Feast Day,” Saint Augustine of Hippo once explained, “for these two were one. And even though they suffered on different days, they were as one. Peter went first, Paul followed. And so we celebrate this day made holy for us by the apostles’ blood. Let us embrace what they believed, they life, their labors, their sufferings, their preaching, and their confession of faith.”
Saints Peter and Paul, pray for us.