St. Peter was the first pope of the Catholic Church. In 64 AD, the Roman Emperor Nero started to persecute Catholics for their faith. He used them for food for his dogs and he would use them a light poles by setting them on fire. During this time Peter (Simon) became the first pope of the Catholic Church. First of all, Simon's name was switched to Peter by Jesus which indicated the apostle being called to a special role. Christ then told Peter, "Upon this rock I will build my Church and the gates of hell will not prevail against it." The word rock has a special significance. Nobody except God was called rock specifically. Also, in Greek Church is the feminine word for rock and Peter is the masculine version of the word rock. This means that the Church is a set rock and is not moveable. Secondly, it shows that the "Gates of Hell," are guarded with the heaviest forces which captures the great war making power of a nation. Thus, it shows that St. Peter will become that visible force for the Church keeping back the power of hell. Thirdly, God entrusted Peter with the keys to the kingdom of heaven. This person (The Pope) represented the king, acted with His authority, and had to act in accordance with the King's mind. St. Peter and his successors also represented the Lord on Earth. Finally, St Peter is given the responsibility of binding things. He could bind, forbid an act, excommunicate a person for serious sin, declare an act permissible, or reconcile a sinner with the community. This means that the leader of the Catholic Church is supposed to act how Jesus Christ did and to lead their people to heaven. To sum up, Jesus gave all of the disciples a mission which was to preach, teach, and sanctify like the Bishops are supposed to do today.
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