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  • Writer's picturePhil


✠In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.

The word of God is living and active.

It judges the thoughts

and intentions of the heart.

All is open and laid bare before the eyes of him

to whom we give account.

Let us confess our sins in penitence and faith:

that I have greatly sinned,

in my thoughts and in my words,

in what I have done and in what I have failed to do,

through my fault, through my fault,

through my most grievous fault;

therefore I ask blessed Mary ever-Virgin, and all the Angels and Saints,

to pray for me to the Lord our God.

May almighty God have mercy on us, forgive us our sins,

and bring us to everlasting life. Amen.


Glory to God in the highest,

and on earth peace to people of good will.

We praise you, we bless you,

we adore you, we glorify you,

we give you thanks for your great glory,

Lord God, heavenly King,

O God, almighty Father.

Lord Jesus Christ, Only Begotten Son,

Lord God, Lamb of God, Son of the Father,

you take away the sins of the world,

have mercy on us;

you take away the sins of the world,

receive our prayer;

you are seated at the right hand of the Father,

have mercy on us.

For you alone are the Holy One,

you alone are the Lord,

you alone are the Most High, Jesus Christ,

with the Holy Spirit, in the glory of God the Father. Amen.


O God, who cause the minds of the faithful

to unite in a single purpose,

grant your people to love what you command

and to desire what you promise,

that, amid the uncertainties of this world,

our hearts may be fixed on that place

where true gladness is found.

Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,

who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit,

one God, for ever and ever.

FIRST READING: Isaiah 22:19-23

Thus says the Lord of Hosts to Shebna, the master of the palace:

I dismiss you from your office,

I remove you from your post,

and the same day I call on my servant

Eliakim son of Hilkiah.

I invest him with your robe,

gird him with your sash,

entrust him with your authority;

and he shall be a father

to the inhabitants of Jerusalem

and to the House of Judah.

on his shoulder;

should he open, no one shall close,

should he close, no one shall open.

I drive him like a peg

into a firm place;

he will become a throne of glory

for his father’s house.


Your love, O Lord, is eternal, discard not the work of your hands.

I thank you, Lord, with all my heart,

you have heard the words of my mouth.

Before the angels I will bless you.

I will adore before your holy temple.

Your love, O Lord, is eternal, discard not the work of your hands.

I thank you for our faithfulness and love

which excel all we ever knew of you.

On the day I called, you answered;

you increased the strength of my soul.

Your love, O Lord, is eternal, discard not the work of your hands.

The Lord is high, yet he looks on the lowly,

and the haughty he knows from afar.

Your love, O Lord, is eternal,

discard not the work of your hands.

Your love, O Lord, is eternal, discard not the work of your hands.


Alleluia, alleluia!

You are Peter, and on this rock I will build my Church.

And the gates of the underworld can never hold out against it.


GOSPEL: Matthew 16:13-20 When Jesus came to the region of

Caesarea Philippi he put this question to his disciples,

‘Who do people say the Son of Man is?’

And they said, ‘Some say he is John the Baptist, some Elijah,

and others Jeremiah or one of the prophets.’

‘But you,’ he said ‘who do you say I am?’

Then Simon Peter spoke up, ‘You are the Christ,’ he said,

‘the Son of the living God.’ Jesus replied,

‘Simon son of Jonah, you are a happy man!

Because it was not flesh and blood that revealed this to you

but my Father in heaven.

So I now say to you: You are Peter and on this rock I will build my Church.

And the gates of the underworld can never hold out against it.

I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven:

whatever you bind on earth shall be considered bound in heaven;

whatever you loose on earth shall be considered loosed in heaven.’

Then he gave the disciples strict orders

not to tell anyone that he was the Christ.


“Employees given such responsibility

are in a position of trust.

The person you appoint to the role

must show leadership skills,

who is respected by fellow employees.

When you appoint a staff member to the role, you need to thoroughly train them in all aspects of the business.”

This is a suggested job-spec for any organisation looking to appoint a Key-holder.

Above all these qualities, the person to be appointed

has to be completely honest and trustworthy.

For the position of Key-holder for the Kingdom of Heaven,Jesus shortlisted twelve, but he gave the position of Key-Holder to Peter (also known as Simon)

Looking at Peter’s CV –

Peter had already proved himself as capable of running

the family fishing business with his brother Andrew.

He wasn’t an academic,

but he was practical.

He didn’t mind taking risks, and displayed an “I can do it” mentality

in much of what he attempted to do.

Walking on water, for instance.

He was a bit of an “action man”,

and in his actions he could be impetuous,as he was with the High Priest’s servant’s ear.

He wasn’t a gifted speaker;

he was blunt, and spoke to the point.

He had a tough exterior, but underneath was fragile,

and just once in a while lost his nerve,

as he did, for instance, in the High Priest’s Courtyard.

As far as Jesus was concerned, Peter, for all his failings, was right for this role. Peter – the Keyholder of the Kingdom

Peter, and Peter’s successors are Key-holders;but they are not the only ones.

Many different "outlets" of this Kingdom,and many Key-holders; and all who are people of the Kingdom

have access to this Key,and are expected to use it to unlock Godly possibilities.

Do we know any more about the Key?

Our first reading today –

“These are the words of him who is holy and true,

who holds the key of David.

What he opens no one can shut,

and what he shuts no one can open.” - Isaiah 22

……..and back to Advent for a moment…..

“O come, O come, thou Key of David come, And open wide our heavenly home, Make safe the way that leads on high, and close the path to misery”

It is this Key of David……

that unlocks the way from imprisonment to freedom:

that gives the poor access to good news;

that opens the way of comfort for the brokenhearted,

that opens the way for captives to find freedom,

that opens the door into the light

so that those imprisoned in darkness may find release.

The Key was entrusted to Peter, in spite of his failings.

The Key has been entrusted to the Church, in spite of its failings.

This Key is Christ Himself,

who entrusted Himself to Peter,

placed Himself into the hands of The Church,

and even entrusted Himself into our hands

to open the way from darkness to light,

from captivity to freedom...

We, even the least in the Kingdom,are entrusted to be Key-holders,

to unlock possibilities, and to bring security to the vulnerable.

And what of us who are Key-holders?

We too need doors to be unlocked and flung open.Peter, even after he was given "the Job" of key-holding,

needed the Key of David to open the door of guilt after three denials

created a barrier between him and Jesus. Then there was that dramatic time in prison when the Key of David

burst in on the imprisoned Peter,

unlocked his chains and his prison door! Pray that The Key might release you from whatever imprisons you….

Pray that The Key might unlock a fear….a worry….Pray that The Key might unlock possibilities within you

and that these may, by God’s grace rather than your own, become realities.


creator of heaven and earth.

I believe in Jesus Christ, his only Son,

our Lord, who was conceived by the

Holy Spirit, born of the Virgin Mary,

suffered under Pontius Pilate,

was crucified, died, and was buried;

he descended to the dead.

On the third day he rose again;

He ascended into heaven,

He is seated at the right hand of the Father,

And he will come to judge the living

and the dead.

I believe in the Holy Spirit,

the holy catholic Church,

the communion of saints,

the forgiveness of sins,

the resurrection of the body,

and the life everlasting. Amen.


For the Church: that we may boldly profess Jesus as Lord

and help others to come to know and follow him

For the grace of awe: that we may recognize

the great generosity of God who invites us out of love

to share in the life of the Trinity

Lord, hear our prayer.

For the grace to be free: that we may trust God's providence

and not be trapped by our plans, dreams, or visions

Lord, hear our prayer.

For Pope Francis, successor to St. Peter: Justin our Archbishop,

Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew, Norman Bishop of Richborough,

Tim Bishop of Winchester, and all who lead God’s people;

that the Holy Spirit will guide them in proclaiming the Good News,

promoting unity in the Church, and inspiring us

to greater love and service

Lord, hear our prayer.

For all who exercise authority, whether in business, education, or

government: that they may use their power for promoting justice

and the common good.

Lord, hear our prayer.

For all who are beginning a new academic year:

that students and teachers may learn together

as they grow in wisdom and love.

Lord, hear our prayer.

For all who are searching for the keys to new life:

that God will help those who feel locked-in to addiction

or destructive habits, to recognize Christ

as the key that will liberate them.

Lord, hear our prayer.

For all who have lost much through natural disaster, unemployment,

persecution, or sickness: that God will relieve their pain,

protect them from harm, and give them strength of spirit

Lord, hear our prayer.

For all who are grieving: that God’s renewing

and healing presence may comfort them

and fill them with hope

Lord, hear our prayer.

For an end to the pandemic:

for those who are developing cures or vaccines.

Lord, hear our prayer.

For all who are discerning God’s call in their life:

that they may recognize the promptings of the Spirit

and be open to how they can best love and serve

in their life commitments

Lord, hear our prayer.

For those who have died……

Rest eternal grant unto them, O Lord,

and let light perpetual shine upon them.

We ask your prayers, Mary, Mother of God,

for our intentions:

Hail, Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with thee;

blessed art thou among women,

and blessed is the fruit of thy womb, Jesus.

Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners now,

and at the hour of our death

Protect us, Lord, in this time of uncertainty and distress.

Sustain and support the anxious and fearful,

and lift up all who are brought low;

that we may rejoice in your comfort

knowing that nothing can separate us from your love

in Christ Jesus our Lord. Merciful Father, accept these prayers

for the sake of your Son, our Saviour, Jesus Christ. Amen.


Let us give thanks to the Lord our God;

It is right to give God thanks and praise.

It is truly right and just to give you thanks, Lord,

to raise to you a hymn of glory and praise,

O Lord, Father of infinite goodness.

For by the word of your Son’s Gospel

you have brought together one Church

from every people, tongue, and nation,

and, having filled her with life by the power of your Spirit,

you never cease through her to gather

the whole human race into one.

Manifesting the covenant of your love,

she dispenses without ceasing the blessed hope of your Kingdom

and shines bright as the sign of your faithfulness,

which in Christ Jesus our Lord you promised would last for eternity.

And so, with all the Powers of heaven,

we worship you constantly on earth, while,

with all the Church, as one voice we acclaim:

Holy, Holy, Holy Lord God of hosts.

Heaven and earth are full of your glory.

Hosanna in the highest.

Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord.

Hosanna in the highest.

At the Saviour’s command

and formed by divine teaching, we dare to say:

Our Father, who art in heaven,

hallowed be thy name;

thy kingdom come,

thy will be done

on earth as it is in heaven.

Give us this day our daily bread,

and forgive us our trespasses,

as we forgive those who trespass against us;

and lead us not into temptation,

but deliver us from evil.

Deliver us, Lord, we pray, from every evil,

graciously grant peace in our days,

that, by the help of your mercy,

we may be always free from sin

and safe from all distress,

as we await the blessed hope

and the coming of our Saviour, Jesus Christ.

For the kingdom, the power

and the glory are yours

now and for ever.

Jesus my Lord and my brother,

who brought divine Life out of human death,

you are meeting me here and now in this place,

in this moment. I pause to remember

that the one thing I desire above all others

is for you to be with me.

Though I cannot receive you here and now

in the Mass, come into my heart,

and open my eyes to your sacred presence…

I offer myself to you in service.

Time to receive the Lord’s Presence spiritually.

“My Jesus, I believe that You are present

in the Most Holy Sacrament of the altar.

I love You above all things, and I desire

to receive You into my soul.

Since I cannot at this moment receive You

sacramentally, come at least spiritually into my

heart … I embrace You as if You were already

there, and unite myself wholly to You.

Never permit me to be separated from You,”

Eternal God, in Christ you make yourself a guest.

Amid all my cares and concerns

make me attentive to your voice

and alert to your presence,

that I may know your love

that surpasses all else,

and share it with others.

God the Father, who has given to his Son the name above every name,

strengthen us to proclaim Christ as Lord;

and may the blessing of almighty God,

the Father, and the Son, ✠ and the Holy Spirit,

come down upon us and remain with us for ever. Amen.


The angel of the Lord brought tidings unto Mary. And she conceived by the Holy Ghost.

Hail Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with thee. Blessed art thou amongst women

and blessed is the fruit of thy womb, Jesus. Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners now,

and at the hour of our death. Amen.

Behold the handmaid of the Lord. Be it unto me according to thy word. Hail Mary. Holy Mary.

And the Word was made flesh. And dwelt amongst us. Hail Mary. Holy Mary.

Pray for us, O holy Mother of God. That we may be made worthy of the promises of Christ.

We beseech thee, O Lord, pour thy grace into our hearts,

that as we have known the Incarnation of thy Son Jesus Christ

by the message of an angel, so by his Cross and Passion

we may be brought unto the glory of his Resurrection;

through the same Christ our Lord. Amen.

Let us proceed in peace.

Thanks be to God.

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