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A team of 200 priests comment on daily Gospel

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Liturgical day: Sunday 22nd (A) in Ordinary Time

Gospel text (Mt 16,21-27): Jesus turned to him and said, «Get behind me, Satan! You would have me stumble. You are their king not as God does, but as people do». Jesus began to make it clear to his disciples that He must go to Jerusalem; He would suffer many things from the Jewish authorities, the chief priests and the teachers of the Law. He would be killed and be raised on the third day. Then Peter took him aside and began to reproach him, «Never, Lord! No, this must never happen to you». But Jesus turned to him and said, «Get behind me, Satan! You would have me stumble. You are their king not as God does, but as people do».

Then Jesus said to his disciples, «If you want to follow me, deny yourself, take up your cross and follow me. For whoever chooses to save his life will lose it, but the one who loses his life for my sake will find it. What will one gain by winning the whole world if he destroys himself? There is nothing you can give to recover your own self. Know that the Son of Man will come in the Glory of his Father with the holy angels, and he will reward each one according to his deeds».

Illustration: Pau Morales

Today Jesus responds very strongly to Simon Peter. What a reprimand! A few seconds earlier, Peter has declared that Jesus is the Son of God and, in turn, Christ bestows on him the primacy of the Church (he is the first Pope!). But Jesus, speaking to them confidentially, adds that He will be executed... Simon refuses to accept the Passion of the Lord: "This shall never happen to you!"

—Pedro is thinking like a simple "company manager"... and he has become a slave to success. But God is God and His logic is just another one: His success is "surrendering for love".