Orthoscopy
Newsletter #2
Deacon Joe Hulway
July 1, 2008
Jesus Asked:
“Who do people say that the Son of Man is?”; “But who do you say that I am?”
(Matthew 16:13, 15)
We often have a lot of questions we would like to ask Jesus, but in the gospels we can also reflect on a lot of the
questions that Jesus asks of others, and indirectly of us. We had the above verses as part of our gospel this past
Sunday as we celebrated the Solemnity of the Apostles Peter and Paul. In response to the second question,
Simon replied,
“You are the Messiah, the Son of the living God.” And it was because of this response,
knowledge revealed to Simon by God the Father, that Jesus changed his name to Peter. Jesus said:
“And so I
say to you, you are Rock (Kepa), and upon this rock (kepa) I will build my church and the gates of the
netherworld shall not prevail against it.”
Kepa is the Aramaic word for rock that Jesus would have spoken. In
some places in scripture it is transliterated into Greek as “Kephas” and in other places, as it is here, the Greek
word for rock, “petra”, is used. Since petra is a feminine noun and not proper for the name of a man, Simon’s new
name was translated as “Petros”. So in Greek, the language in which the New Testament was written, this verse
states:
“You are Petros and upon this petra I will build my church.”

This is an important verse for Catholics because it establishes the primacy of Peter over the Church established
by Christ, a Church that is to last until the end of time because the gates of hell will not prevail against it. And
because it is to last through history, successors to Peter, the popes, are needed to feed and tend the sheep for all
time. Fr. Corapi points out that it is also an interesting verse because, in battle, gates are a defensive weapon;
you don’t attack someone with a gate. And so, in the final battle against Satan, the Church will be the one on
offense.

Who do you say that Jesus is? Take some time to reflect on your image of Christ; on His role in your life. What do
you know in your head; what do you feel in your heart? Simon Peter boldly proclaimed his faith in Jesus as the
Messiah. When Jesus asks you the question,
“But who do you say that I am?”, do you keep your answer to
yourself or do you proclaim it boldly to the world through your word and actions?
What’s New?
This retirement life is good. But instead of catching up, I feel like I’m further behind now than when I left work two
months ago. Too many choices of things to do that I get overwhelmed and don’t do any of them. I am getting a
little more structure into my days, however. I try to go to “work” each day up in my writing room for about three
hours. Sometimes it’s productive and other times I just look at a blank screen. But it is getting a little more
disciplined, and that’s a good thing.

We had an exciting time at the Franciscan University in Steubenville, Ohio with our youth group. We took 13 of our
teens and joined about 2000 others for the annual youth conference there. The conferences are very
professionally done and they present a very orthodox Catholic message for the youth. Being in a field house with
2000 teens lifting their voices to the rafters in praise and worship is quite an exhilarating experience. But, on
Friday and Saturday evenings, they also knelt quietly on hard floors and bleachers before Jesus, present in the
Eucharist and exposed in the monstrance. And they also voluntarily waited in line for more than hour to go to
Confession, to receive the Sacrament of Reconciliation. The healing power of this sacrament is amazing; you
could see the changes take place. The theme of the conference was “Witness” and related to Acts 1:8. Just
before Jesus ascended to Heaven, He told His disciples:
“You will receive power when the holy Spirit comes
upon you, and you will be my witnesses … to the ends of the earth.”
And they were very good witnesses. They
showed they could be people of prayer, people of repentance, but most of all people of joy. If we are not joyful
people, we are not going to very successful at bringing the gospel message to our friends and families.
Homilies and Bulletin Articles
There are no new bulletin articles to view at the website and there are only two new homilies. I was at
Steubenville on one Sunday and attended Mass with my dad at his church on Father’s Day. The two new homilies
that I have posted are:


Status of the Book
As I mentioned, I’ve become a little more disciplined about spending time on the book. But a lot of time has been
spent on tangential efforts, especially toward investigating the potential for getting the book published some day. I
am planning on submitting the book idea to an agent, or agents, to see what kind of response I get. They want a
bunch of information for the submissions. They want summaries for each chapter, and that was a good thing to
do anyways. They want a couple of chapters to check out my writing style. I already had the Introduction chapter
pretty much complete and just finished the first regular chapter; a few people have volunteered to review that for
me before I send it off. The part I am struggling with the most is the competitive analysis. They want a comparison
of my book with at least five current books on a related subject, distinguishing mine from the others. If anyone has
any suggestions for books that I might use for comparison, please let me know.