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St. Peter, Shepherd

“So the collectors of the half-shekel say to the apostle Peter, "Does not your master pay the half-shekel?" Having said which, they agreed that the master pays for all the disciples. Now the Saviour, when he orders it to be given for himself and Peter, seems to have paid out for all; so just as all were included in the Saviour, by virtue of his office as teacher, likewise after the Saviour all were included in Peter. For he appointed him to be their head,l that he might be the shepherd of the Lord's flock. For amongst other things he says to the disciples: "Watch and pray lest ye enter into temptation" ; and he says to Peter, "Behold, Satan hath desired to have you, that he may sift you as wheat ; but I have prayed for thee, that " thy faith fail not, and do thou later, being converted, strengthen thy brethren". What ambiguity is there? Did he pray for Peter, but not pray for James and John, not to mention the others? It is clear that all are included in Peter, for by praying for Peter, he is seen to have prayed for all. For always a people I ' is blamed and praised in him that is set over.” (Quaestiones ex Nouo Testamento [A.D. 370]).

“. . By the apostles who were somewhat distinguished among their colleagues, whom also he, Paul, because of their constancy calls "pillars", and who had always been intimate with the I Lord, even beholding his glory on the mount, by them he I [Paul] says the gift which he received from God was approved ; so that he would be worthy to have primacy4 in preaching to the Gentiles, even as Peter had the primacy in preaching to the ~ circumcision. And even as he gives colleagues to Peter, outstanding men among the apostles, so he also joins to himself Barnabas, who was associated with him by divine choice; yet I he claims the privilege of primacy granted by God for himself alone, even as it was granted to Peter alone among the apostles, in such a way that the apostles of the circumcision stretched out their right hands to the apostles of the Gentiles to manifest a harmony of fellowship, that both parties, knowing that they had received from the Lord a spirit of completeness in the imparting of the gospel, might show that they were in no way appointing one another.” (Commentaria in XI11 Epistolas Beati Pauli, on Galatians 2:9-10).

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