St. Peter and St. Paul, two giants of our faith, are reminders of the strength and confidence that are meant for us in Christ.
Though they were very different people, both saints showed great confidence in the power of God in times of danger and difficulty. This came not only from the authority given to them, but also because they knew Christ and stayed in close contact with him.
The first reading highlights the power of prayer, while the life stories of these two very human Apostles show that discipleship involves hard work, perseverance, suffering and the kind of trust in Christ that leads us to continue to hope despite our own weakness and failure. In this, God provides the victory.
Hope, respect, compassion and patience are all characteristics that we need as a nation if our Canada Day celebrations are to mean anything. This time of celebration is also a time to thank God for his blessings upon us. In so many countries, ordinary people live in well-founded fear of the government or para-military organizations. There are millions of refugees stranded for years in ‘camps’ with no hope of ever belonging to any country. What we have is the result of years of work according to a common vision of respect, good government, mutual aid, and a determination to overcome problems rather than be overcome by them. Our solutions have been uniquely Canadian and have helped us become a country that is one of the best places to live.
This is still true despite recent discouraging events. You can do your part by writing to your Member of Parliament and generally bringing the Christian voice to discussions about the future of our society.
For our nation and for ourselves, the future holds many challenges. Let us place our trust in the Lord Jesus, follow him and be confident that he is with us with his compassion and healing power.