Why the Papacy Matters

21st Sunday of Ordinary Time (A)

This Sunday’s gospel (Mt 16:13-20) recounts Jesus giving the keys of the kingdom to St. Peter, after Peter proclaims Jesus to be the Christ. This is the passage normally pointed to by Catholics as the establishment of the Petrine Office, or papacy; the special role that the successor of St. Peter plays among all the bishops of the Church as the “vicar” or “steward” of Christ.

In our reflection this week, I talk about the special role the petrine office plays as the focal point for Christian unity, and why that matters for all Christians.

Read another reflection on this gospel passage, Who Do You Say That I Am?