Skip to comments.Pope: may all Christians recognize true meaning of Peter’s primacy
Posted on 06/07/2006 8:12:05 PM PDT by Petrosius
Benedict XVI talked about the primacy intended by Jesus and recognized by the apostles. He said a spontaneous prayer so that ?entrusted to poor human beings, the primacy may be always exercised in its original sense as desired by the Lord, that it may be recognized by our brothers not yet in full communion with us.
Vatican City (AsiaNews) The foundation of the primacy of Peter in the desire manifested by Jesus and recognition by the Twelve, and spontaneous prayers so that poor human beings entrusted with the primacy will know how exercise it according to the will of Jesus, and so it may be recognized also by Christians who are not in full communion with Rome. This was the thrust of the words of Benedict XVI in todays general audience.
Thus, Christian unity, indicated by Benedict XVI himself as being one of the fundamental objectives of his pontificate, accompanied his reflection on the primacy, described as a constitutive element of the Church, which has always posed one of the main if not the main obstacles to Christian unity unity. In this regard, John Paul II, in his encyclical Ut Unum Sint (1995), affirmed the openness of the Catholic Church to discussing not the primacy but concrete ways of exercising it. Today, Benedict XVI underlined that the task entrusted to Peter, is to strengthen his brothers. Off the cuff, he said: This is the primacy given for all times: Peter must be the guardian of communion with Christ, lead to communion with Christ with the charity of Christ, even to lead to the realization of this charity in everyday life.
In his reflection, Benedict XVI today highlighted different aspects of the primacy: its institution by Christ, the awareness of Peter and recognition by the Twelve.
On this spring day, Benedict XVI addressed at least 40,000 people who packed into the square and brightened it up with colourful flags, hats, handkerchiefs, and even a few umbrellas to offer protection from the sun, already rather warm at times. The pope drew attention to the narrative of John about the first meeting of Jesus with Simon, brother of Andrew, saying it records a singular fact: Jesus looked at him and said, You are Simon son of John. You are to be called Cephas (which is translated Peter) (Jn1:42). Jesus did not usually change the names of his disciples, in fact, He never gave a new name to any of his disciples. However he did so with Simon, and that name, translated in Greek as Petros, would crop up several times in the Gospels and would end up by replacing his original name. This fact takes on particular significance when one recalls that in the Old Testament, changing a name was usually a prelude to entrusting one with a mission (cfr Jn 17:5; 32:28ff). In fact, the intention of Christ to attribute special importance to Peter within the Apostolic College emerges in many instances: in Capernaum, the Teacher went to lodge in Peters house (Mk 1:29); when the crowd flocked to the banks of the lake of Gennesaret, Jesus chose Peters boat from the two moored there (Lk 5:3); when in particular circumstances, Jesus took three disciples to accompany him, only Peter is always recalled as the first of the group: the same happened in the resurrection of the daughter of Jairus (cfr Mk 5:37; Lk 8:51); in the Transfiguration (cfr Mk 9:2; Mt 17:1; Lk 9:28), during the agony in the Garden of Gethsemane (cfr Mk 14:33; Mt 16:37). And again: it was Peter who was approached by the tax collectors at the Temple and the Teacher paid for himself and for Peter alone (cfr Mt 17: 24-27); it was Peter whose feet He washed first at the Last Supper (cfr Jn 13:6) and it was only for him that He prayed so that his faith would not fail and that he may in turn strengthen his brothers (cfr Lk 22: 30-31).
Peter himself is, after all, aware of his unique position: it is he who often, in the name also of the rest, speaks out, asking for an explanation for some difficult parable (Mt 15:15) or the exact meaning of a precept (Mt 18:21) or the formal promise of reward (Mt 19:27).
Benedict XVI dwelt upon the profession of faith which, again in the name of the Twelve, he made near Caesarea Philippi. To Jesus who asked: Who do you say I am? Simon Peter answered, You are the Messiah, the Son of the living God (Mt 16: 15-16). Jesus replies by making a solemn statement that defines, once and for all, the role of Peter in the Church: And I tell you, you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church, and the gates of Hades will not prevail against it. I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven, and whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven (Mt 16:18-19). The three metaphors Jesus refers to are in themselves very clear: Peter will be the rock, the foundation on which the Church will stand; He will have the keys of the Kingdom of heaven to open or close as he sees fit; and finally, he will be able to bind or dissolve in the sense that he will be able to establish or prohibit as he holds necessary for the life of the Church, which is, and remains, of Christ.
This position of pre-eminence that Jesus meant to confer upon Peter is apparent also after the resurrection: Jesus charged the women to take the news to Peter, as distinct from the other Apostles (cfr Mk 16:7); it is to him and to John that Mary Magdalen rushes to inform them about the overturned stone at the entrance to the sepulchre (cfr Jn 20:2) and John allows Peter to go ahead when the two reach the empty tomb (cfr Jn 20:4-6); Peter would be the first among the Apostles to testify to an apparition of the Risen Lord (cfr Lk 24:34; 1 Cor 15:5). His role, decisively emphasized (cfr Jn 20:3-10), marks the continuity between his pre-eminence among the apostolic group and the pre-eminence he would continue to enjoy in the community born from the paschal events, as attested in the Book of the Acts (cfr 1:15-26; 2:14-40; 3:12-26; 4:8-12; 5:1-11.29; 8:14-17; 10; etc.). His behaviour is considered so decisive that it is the focus of observations and even of criticism (cfr At 11:1-18; Gal 2:11-14). Peter occupies a leadership role in the Council of Jerusalem (cfr At 15 and Gal 2:1-10) and it is precisely because of his being a witness to the authentic faith that Paul himself recognized in him a certain quality of first (cfr 1 Cor 15:5; Gal 1:18; 2:7ff; etc.). Further, the fact that all the key texts referring to Peter can be traced back to the context of the Last Supper, when Christ confers upon Peter the ministry of strengthening his brothers (cfr Lk 22:31ff), reveals how the Church born from the paschal memory celebrated in the Eucharist, finds one of its constitutive elements in the ministry entrusted to Peter.
At the end of his reflection, Benedict XVI prayed, off the cuff, that the primacy of Peter, entrusted to poor human beings, may be always exercised in its original sense as desired by the Lord, so that it may be recognized still more in its true meaning by our brothers as yet not in full communion with us.
Ain't gonna happen, but it was nice of the Pope to think about us. ;)
Jesus is supreme.
And Peter is the rock upon which He chose to build his Church.
I guess if we all believed that, we'd all be Catholics...So I will say with a clear conscience, Peter is NOT the rock of the church...Jesus is the Rock that the church was built upon...
Now that was easy wasn't it...
Eph 2:20 And are built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets (not just one apostle), Jesus Christ himself being the chief corner stone;
Jesus is the Rock...Peter, like the rest of the apostles was a rock in the foundation but Jesus Christ is THE ROCK that the church was built upon...
No, that would be Peter's comfession upon which Jesus would build His church. Not Peter.
But Peter is the one he speaks to directly. As the Scripture makes cleasr, he is the first of the twelve. Just look at how much we know about Peter and how little about the others.
I would think the Pope would be more concerned with the flood of Catholics becoming Muslims.
"Today, Benedict XVI underlined that the task entrusted to Peter, is to strengthen his brothers. Off the cuff, he said: This is the primacy given for all times: Peter must be the guardian of communion with Christ, lead to communion with Christ
with the charity of Christ, even to lead to the realization of this charity in everyday life."
Good stuff, P. This is why we Orthodox admire this Pope so much, far more than any other at least in my lifetime.
Just waiting for the right time to post the Jack Chick announcement LOL
The problem is, at least based upon conversations I've had with my Protestant friends, is that they do not comprehend that there is one Church and that is that (cf 1 cor 3:1-5, 1 cor 12:12ff, Eph 5:27, etc.). Jesus Christ is the head of that Church and is the bridegroom of that Church (cf Eph 5:23). He installed Peter as his "prime minister," to deal with the temporal issues relating to that Church (Matt 16:19, cf Isa 22:20-23). Additionally, they do not comprehend the concept of Apostolic succession (cf Acts 1:15ff, and many other examples of episcopal ordinations, cf 2 Ti 1:6, Acts 20:28, etc.).
Uh, Isaiah is referring to Jesus, and there is no reference to any apostles or apostolic succession in Acts, 20...Where do you guys get this stuff???
We comprehend what the Bible says...And we comprehend what your church teaches...And they're not the same thing...Comprehending is not the problem...Believing your church is the problem...And I don't...
One method of Hermeneutical understanding of Matthew 16:18
is to do a word study of all the scriptures which were then known
as the Holy Word of G-d when Y'shua spoke these words.
This will allow one to understand that all of the Holy Word of G-d
was inspired by YHvH; the whole counsel of G-d.
The only conclusion that one can come to unless you are
predisposed to believe in man's tradition over the Holy Word of G-d
is that Y'shua was speaking of himself as the "Rock "
Genesis 49:24 But his bow remained steady, his strong arms stayed
[Or archers will attack...will shoot...will remain...will stay] supple,
because of the hand of the Mighty One of Jacob,
because of the Shepherd, the Rock of Israel,
Deuteronomy 32:3 I will proclaim the name of the LORD. Oh, praise the greatness of our God!
Deuteronomy 32:4 He is the Rock , his works are perfect, and all his ways are
just. A faithful God who does no wrong, upright and just is he.
Deuteronomy 32:15 ..... He abandoned the God who made him and rejected the Rock his Saviour.
Deuteronomy 32:30 How could one man chase a thousand, or two put ten
thousand to flight, unless their Rock had sold them, unless
the LORD had given them up?
Deuteronomy 32:31 For their rock is not like our Rock , as even our enemies concede
Deuteronomy 32:32 Their vine comes from the vine of Sodom and from the fields of Gomorrah.
Their grapes are filled with poison, and their clusters with bitterness.
1 Samuel 2:2 "There is no-one holy [Or no Holy One] like the LORD;
there is no-one besides you; there is no Rock like our God.
2 Samuel 22:2 He said: "The LORD is my Rock , my fortress and my deliverer;
2 Samuel 22:3 my God is my Rock , in whom I take refuge, my shield and the
horn [Horn here symbolises strength.] of my salvation.
He is my stronghold, my refuge and my saviour from violent men you save me.
2 Samuel 22:32 For who is God besides the LORD? And who is the Rock except our God?
2 Samuel 22:47 "The LORD lives! Praise be to my Rock ! Exalted be God, the Rock , my Saviour!
2 Samuel 23:3 The God of Israel spoke, the Rock of Israel said to me:
'When one rules over men in righteousness, when he rules in the fear of God,
Psalm 18:31 For who is God besides the LORD? And who is the Rock except our God?
Psalm 18:46 The LORD lives! Praise be to my Rock ! Exalted be God my Saviour!
Psalm 19:14 May the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart
be pleasing in your sight, O LORD, my Rock and my Redeemer.
Psalm 42:9 I say to God my Rock , "Why have you forgotten me? Why must I go about mourning, oppressed by the enemy?"
Psalm 78:35 They remembered that God was their Rock , that God Most High was their Redeemer.
Psalm 89:26 He will call out to me, `You are my Father, my God, the Rock my Saviour.'
Psalm 92:15 ..... "YHvH is upright; he is my Rock , and there is no wickedness in him."
Psalm 95:1 Come, let us sing for joy to the LORD; let us shout aloud to the Rock of our salvation.
Psalm 144:1 Praise be to the LORD my Rock , who trains my hands for war, my fingers for battle.
Habakkuk 1:12 O LORD, are you not from everlasting? My God, my Holy
One, we will not die. O LORD, you have appointed them to
execute judgment; O Rock , you have ordained them to punish.
Sorry, Charlie. Not even close.
Isa 22:20 In that day I will call my servant Eli'akim the son of Hilki'ah,
Isa 22:21 and I will clothe him with your robe, and will bind your girdle on him, and will commit your authority to his hand; and he shall be a father to the inhabitants of Jerusalem and to the house of Judah.
Isa 22:22 And I will place on his shoulder the key of the house of David; he shall open, and none shall shut; and he shall shut, and none shall open.
Isa 22:23 And I will fasten him like a peg in a sure place, and he will become a throne of honor to his father's house.
So if the key is being placed upon the shoulder of Christ, as you are stating...
then you are equating Christ with the servant, rather than the king (Hezekiah). To me, that sounds dangerously close to denying the divinity of Christ...
If that's what you choose to believe, well, this is a free country, but you may wish to consider the implications.
What's your opinion of Acts 1; Peter standing up and saying Judas has to be replaced because he occupied an office?
Actually, if he re-reads what I posted, he'll note that I was referring to the ordination that happened in Acts 20. (Showing that new episcopates could be established by already-existing bishops).
Oh now that's going to open up a whole can of worms here. So you treat the Old Testament as "the Word of God (Emeritus)"?
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