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Broadview Heights, OH 44147
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Today the Church interrupts the usual course of Sundays to celebrate the Feast of Saints Peter and Paul, two of the greatest apostles in the Early Church who witnessed to Jesus’ resurrection: Peter by serving as the first pope and Paul as the greatest missionary to the non-Jewish people.
While both had different temperaments and backgrounds, what united Peter and Paul was a firm conviction that God would take care of them in whatever circumstances they faced. Our readings at Mass today reveal this to us. The Acts of the Apostles shows us Peter in prison the night before he was to be sentenced. When God sent his angel to rescue Peter, he was sound asleep between 2 guards. We could not imagine ourselves being so calm in such a situation. In fact, Peter’s history shows us a much different disposition in dangerous situations. Recall the events of Holy Thursday evening where he denied Jesus 3 times. Yet Peter repented and allowed love, not fear to be the hallmark of his relationship with Jesus and those he serves as leader of the Church.
Paul’s confidence was similar. He writes to Timothy his disciple: “The time of my dissolution is near. I have fought the good fight. I have finished the race. I have kept the faith.”
Perhaps the lesson we can glean from the lives of Peter and Paul is one of confidence in God. This confidence manifested in even the worst situations, speaks volumes and is a tangible way that we can be missionary in today’s world.
Speaking of missionary, today we welcome Fr. Johnbosco from the Diocese of Cuddapah, India who will be speaking to us about the work of the Church in that area. Just as in the time of Peter and Paul, the Church is still by her nature a missionary church. Our support lends our assistance to the missionary efforts of those who devote their lives to preaching God’s word and doing God’s work to those who need it most. Your generous support is greatly appreciated.
Please accept my wishes for a very blessed, happy and safe Independence Day. God had blessed our nation with many natural and human resources so that even the poorest people are not as destitute as those in other countries. America is still the best place to live on earth: still people come to our shores in search of a better life. The most important part of our celebrations is time spent in thanksgiving for God’s goodness to us as a nation: a gift I pray we never take for granted.
“Happy Fourth of July”