In today’s Gospel from the Mass (Matt 16:13-19), Jesus initiates the greatest succession plan ever conceived:

[13] Now when Jesus came into the district of Caesare’a Philip’pi, he asked his disciples, “Who do men say that the Son of man is?” [14] And they said, “Some say John the Baptist, others say Eli’jah, and others Jeremiah or one of the prophets.”  [15] He said to them, “But who do you say that I am?”  [16] Simon Peter replied, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.” [17] And Jesus answered him, “Blessed are you, Simon Bar-Jona! For flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but my Father who is in heaven.  [18] And I tell you, you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church, and the powers of death shall not prevail against it.  [19] I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven, and whatever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.”

It is a wonderful demonstration of the perfection of the Divine Leadership of Jesus Christ:

  • Jesus Christ, the Son of God has come to earth to build His Kingdom.
  • Of all the potential candidates to transfer power to, Jesus Christ picks Peter, a highly unlikely choice: Peter is a poor fisherman with minimal education and no significant management or leadership skills.  Peter has no pedigree.
  • And yet, Jesus Christ picks Peter and gives him the “keys to the kingdom of heaven”, a transfer of unfathomable power, for Peter and his successors will actually be able to offer the forgiveness of Christ in an exclusive way.
  • Of course, it is through the Trinity that people are saved and the Chair of Peter’s power came from and still comes from the Trinity.
  • In picking Peter to be His successor on earth, Jesus demonstrates His greatness, for the Chair of Peter still stands today.

Jesus Christ, the Son of God, doesn’t make mistakes.  Saint Peter is a prime example of the Christ’s greatness.