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Tuesday, February 22, 2011

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Chair of St. Peter

1 Peter 5:1-4
Psalm 23:1-6
Matthew 16:13-19

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"united we stand, divided we fall"

"I for My part declare to you, you are 'Rock,' and on this rock I will build My Church." —Matthew 16:18

The Church has the "keys of the kingdom" (Mt 16:19). It can attack the gates of hell which shall not prevail against it (Mt 16:18). Whatever the Church binds on earth is bound in heaven; whatever it looses on earth is loosed in heaven (Mt 16:19). The Church can bring down the strongholds of Satan (2 Cor 10:4) and quickly crush him (Rm 16:20). The Church can lead the world to Christ.

However, we don't see the Church exercising its authority and claiming God's victory. Instead, we see abortion, war, pornography, racism and starvation. The Church is weakened because it is not united. The Church is Christ's body (1 Cor 12:12). Like all bodies, it must be united to function properly.

Therefore, Jesus right now is praying for the Church to be one (Jn 17:21) under His headship (Eph 1:10) and one in the Spirit (Eph 4:3). He has given us the Pope to unite us. Because of our sinfulness, even Christians under Jesus' lordship and alive in the Spirit are often not united. We need a leader who will exercise his God-given authority and lead us to unity. The Pope is called by Jesus to do this. If we obey Him, we will be one and we will be able to win the victories Jesus promised us.

Prayer:  Father, may I obey You by obeying the Pope, and thereby help stop abortions, starvation, and war.

Promise:  "God's flock is in your midst; give it a shepherd's care." —1 Pt 5:2

Praise:  Praise Jesus, Who is with us through the Popes always, even to the end of the age!

Reference:  (For a related teaching, order our tape The Pope's Vision of God's Plan on audio AV 50-3 or video V-50.)

Rescript:  †Reverend Joseph R. Binzer, Vicar General of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, July27, 2010

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