In Partnership with

St Agatha’s Parish

North William Street, Dublin D01N7F6

St Laurence O’Toole Parish

Seville Place, North Wall, Dublin D01KN73

27th August 2023. Twenty- First Sunday in Ordinary Time. KEY OF FAITH IN THE SHAPE OF THE CROSS

In today’s Gospel (Mt 16:13-20) after Jesus asked the disciples who did they think He was, Peter steps forth and professes his faith in Jesus as the Christ and the Son of God. Jesus is also asking us the same question today: And you, who do you say I am? Jesus hints to His divine identity in the question, when He includes the phrase ‘I Am’. God once told Moses that, ‘I Am who I Am’ (Exodus 3:14). Finding our own answer requires an understanding of Christ. Do I believe that Jesus becomes visible in the Sacraments of the Church and that He is Eucharist? Jesus is the visible image of the invisible God? Do I think that Jesus should be the centre of my life? Do I believe that all that exists comes from Him (Rom 11:33-36) and that I cannot enter Heaven without Him, who is the Key. That key comes in the shape of the Cross. In baptism, we all receive faith to unlock ourselves free from original sin and be a service to the Church (God and each other). The shape of the key of faith was marked on our foreheads, in the shape of the Cross.


The First Reading today (Isaiah 22:19-23) also reveals the shape of the key, when God said, I place the key of the House of David on My servant’s shoulder. It is the Cross. Faith enables us to respond to God’s call which is our vocation. Faith is our rock and Jesus continues to build His Church today, relying on your faith and mine. On the path to salvation (eternal life) we will all encounter the cross of suffering. We are to see it as a divine currency, which will purchase our place in Heaven someday. To be partakers in the redemption of the world, we are called to replace Jesus on the Cross with ourselves.


We are instruments to be used by God to defeat the underworld and its evil army of devils. It is now our turn to take up the weapon of the Cross and fight the devil, by living our faith by practicing acts of Love, Mercy and Obedience to the Divine Will and Word of God. The devil’s weapon is to conquer us through our ego and pride, encouraging us to go against God’s Commandments and Teachings. Satan did this with Adam and Eve and his key unlocks the gates of Hell. Many souls reject the Keys of Heaven, by replacing them with the keys of Hell, because they choose to live in sin. It is not just one man that received these keys, but the Church in its unity. We all have the authority to forgive each other. The Pope has the authority and responsibility to lead us and interpret Holy Scripture according to God’s Will. God bless, Fr. Brendan.