St. Peter’s Chair at Rome
ST. PETER having triumphed over the devil in the East, the latter pursued him to Rome in the person of Simon Magus. He who had formerly trembled at the voice of a poor maid now feared not the very throne of idolatry and superstition. The capital of the empire of the world, and the centre of impiety, called for the zeal of the Prince of Apostles. God had established the Roman Empire, and extended its dominion beyond that of any former monarchy, for the more easy propagation of His Gospel. Its metropolis was of the greatest importance for this enterprise. St. Peter took that province upon himself, and, repairing to Rome, there preached the faith and established his ecclesiastical chair. That St. Peter preached in Rome, founded the Church there, and died there by martyrdom under Nero, are facts the most incontestable, by the testimony of all writers of different countries who lived near that time; persons of unquestionable veracity, and who could not but be informed of the truth in a point so interesting and of its own nature so public and notorious. This is also attested by monuments of every kind; by the prerogatives, rights, and privileges which that church enjoyed from those early ages in consequence of this title. It was an ancient custom observed by churches to keep an annual festival of the consecration of their bishops. The feast of the Chair of St. Peter is found in ancient martyrologies. Christians justly celebrate the founding of this mother-church, the centre of Catholic communion, in thanksgiving to God for His mercies to His Church, and to implore His future blessings.
Reflection. —As one of God's greatest mercies to His Church, let us earnestly beg of Him to raise up in it zealous pastors, eminently replenished with His Spirit, with which He animated His apostles.
Lives Of The Saints By Alban Butler, Benziger Bros. Edition www.globalgrey.co.uk
Prayers and Reading for Today’s MASS
Ferial Day – Commemoration of St. Prisca (Virgin, Martyr)
Introit • Eccles. 45, 30
The Lord made to him a covenant of peace, and made him a prince; that the dignity of priesthood should be to him for ever. Ps. 131, 1. O Lord, remember David, and all his meekness. Glory be …
O God, Who committing to blessed Peter, Thine apostle, the keys of the heavenly kingdom, didst bestow on him the pontifical function of binding and loosing, grant that, by the help of his intercession, we may be delivered from the bonds of our sins. Who livest.
Grant, we beseech Thee, O almighty God, that we, who venerate the birthday of blessed Prisca, Thy virgin and martyr, may both rejoice for her annual solemnity and profit by the example of so great faith. Through our Lord.
Epistle • 1 Pet. 1, 1-7
Lesson from the Epistle of blessed Peter the Apostle.
[He gives thanks to God for the benefit of our being called to the true faith and to eternal life, into which we are to enter by many tribulations. He exhorts to holiness of life, considering the holiness of God and our redemption by the blood of Christ.]
Peter, an apostle of Jesus Christ, to the strangers dispersed through Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, Asia, and Bithynia, elect, According to the foreknowledge of God the Father, unto the sanctification of the Spirit, unto obedience and sprinkling of the blood of Jesus Christ: Grace unto you and peace be multiplied. Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who according to his great mercy hath regenerated us unto a lively hope, by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, Unto an inheritance incorruptible, and undefiled, and that can not fade, reserved in heaven for you, Who, by the power of God, are kept by faith unto salvation, ready to be revealed in the last time.
Wherein you shall greatly rejoice, if now you must be for a little time made sorrowful in divers temptations: That the trial of your faith (much more precious than gold which is tried by the fire) may be found unto praise and glory and honour at the appearing of Jesus Christ our Lord.
Gradual • Ps. 106, 32, 31
Let them exalt him in the church of the people; and praise him in the chair of the ancients. Let the mercies of the Lord give glory to him; and his wonderful works to the children of men.
Alleluia, alleluia. Matt. 16, 18. Thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church. Alleluia.
Gospel • Matt. 16, 13-19
Continuation of the Holy Gospel According to St. Matthew.
[Christ refuses to shew the Pharisees a sign from heaven. Peter's confession is rewarded. He is rebuked for opposing Christ's passion. All his followers must deny themselves.]
At that time, And Jesus came into the quarters of Caesarea Philippi: and he asked his disciples, saying: Whom do men say that the Son of man is? But they said: Some John the Baptist, and other some Elias, and others Jeremias, or one of the prophets. Jesus saith to them: But whom do you say that I am?
Simon Peter answered and said: Thou art Christ, the Son of the living God. And Jesus answering, said to him: Blessed art thou, Simon Bar-Jona: because flesh and blood hath not revealed it to thee, but my Father who is in heaven. And I say to thee: That thou art Peter; and upon this rock I will build my church, and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it. And I will give to thee the keys of the kingdom of heaven. And whatsoever thou shalt bind upon earth, it shall be bound also in heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt loose upon earth, it shall be loosed also in heaven.
Offertory • Matt. 16, 18, 19
Thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build My church, and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it; and I will give to thee the keys of the kingdom of heaven.
We beseech Thee, O Lord, that the prayer of the blessed apostle Peter may commend the sacrifices and supplications of Thy Church, so that the celebration we hold for his glory may profit for our pardon. Through our Lord.
May this sacrifice, we beseech Thee, O Lord, which we offer to commemorate the birthday of Thy saints, both loose the bonds of our base nature and bring upon us the gifts of Thy mercy. Through our Lord.
Communion • Matt. 16, 18
Thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build My church.
Let the gift we offer bring us joy, O Lord, that, as we declare Thee wonderful in Thine apostle Peter, so through him we may share the generosity of Thy forgiveness. Through our Lord.
We pray Thee, O Lord, that, being filled with the mysteries of salvation, we may be helped by her prayers whose feast we celebrate. Through our Lord.