_"And I tell you, you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church, and the powers of death shall not prevail against it. I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven, and whatever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven."(Matthew 16:18-19)_

_*Today the Church celebrates the feast of the Chair of saint Peter the apostle. It is a feast that signifies the unity of the Church founded on the apostles. Jesus chose Peter to be the leader of the apostles and the authority bestowed on him has been handed over from him to his successor, the pope.*_

_The pope as the vicar of Christ is the head of the Church and successor of Saint Peter and as such he is saddled with the responsibility of guiding the church and in preserving the deposit of the faith. In collaboration with the bishops he leads the Church and guides her in the path of truth and in obedience to God's command._

_*This authority given to saint Peter and which is also shared by his successors is a servant-authority, that is, the leader must be the servant of all. The pope is the head of the Church, but He is the servant of all and He will continue to lead the church by serving her and making himself available for the good of all her members.*_

_When Peter gave his response to Jesus' question about who He is as we read in the gospel, he was told by Jesus that it was God who revealed the answer to Him. Therefore, he was appointed to lead others, but not as a dictator, but a servant._

_*A good leader must first be humble and be ready to serve others and guide them in the way that leads to life just as Christ did. He or she must constantly make effort to stay true to his or her calling or mandate and discharge his mandate in a manner that will be acceptable to God and also be for the well being of those he is leading. He must imitate Christ always.*_

_In the first reading of today saint Peter admonishes those who are in leadership position to strive to tend the flock of Christ put in their care. They must not manipulate the flock to their own gain, but will always strive to be good examples to those they are leading and be ready and willing to lay down their lives for them._

_*We all are leaders in different ways and our authority to lead comes from God. We should know that God has placed us where we are presently to be able to serve others. We must not misuse our position, but use it to make a positive impact in the lives of those we lead and also bring tremendous change in our world. In the end God's reward awaits all those who have done their best to lead well and they will receive the unfading crown of glory. We must also constantly pray for the pope and all those in positions of authority that they may discharge their duties in accordance to God's will.*_

_Good morning dearest one. Smile😊as you do your work and do have a wonderful day and blessed new week. May God give you the grace to be a good leader and a good follower always. Amen. *And may the Almighty God bless you: the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit. Amen.*_

*Meditation:* 1 Peter 5:1-4/Psalm 23:1-6/Matthew 16:13-19

*Watch-Word:* The Lord is my Shepherd; there is nothing I shall want.

*God has chosen you to serve Him in the people, do it well and you will have a good reward in the end.*

(Monday of the first week of lent. Feast of the Chair of Saint Peter the Apostle)