SESSION 2: Peter
Peter said to Jesus, ‘Though all become deserters because of you, I will never desert you.’ Jesus said to him, ‘Truly I tell you, this very night, before the cock crows, you will deny me three times.’ Peter said to him, ‘Even though I must die with you, I will not deny you.’ And so said all the disciples.
Now Peter was sitting outside in the courtyard. A servant-girl came to him and said, ‘You also were with Jesus the Galilean.’ But he denied it before all of them, saying, ‘I do not know what you are talking about.’ When he went out to the porch, another servant-girl saw him, and she said to the bystanders, ‘This man was with Jesus of Nazareth.’ Again he denied it with an oath, ‘I do not know the man.’ After a little while the bystanders came up and said to Peter, ‘Certainly you are also one of them, for your accent betrays you.’ Then he began to curse, and he swore an oath, ‘I do not know the man!’ At that moment the cock crowed. Then Peter remembered what Jesus had said: ‘Before the cock crows, you will deny me three times.’ And he went out and wept bitterly.
Matthew 26:32-35, 69-75
I would never have let him down, never. Except I did. When the time came, I just wasn’t brave enough. I bottled out. I am so ashamed.
Questions to ask yourself:
Have you ever felt like Peter or had a similar experience?
How did the situation develop?
What regrets do you have?
Did anything about the experience bring you a sense of satisfaction?
Find something that reflects your experience and the experience of Peter. It could be: a poem, a hymn, a song, a novel or story, another book, a film, a picture or artwork. Bring it with you to the session, so that you can tell the group what it means for you.
A time for everyone to share their thoughts, memories, experiences and the items they have brought. Listen carefully and respectfully to what everyone has to say.
Lectio Divina. Working on your own, read today’s Bible passage to yourself very slowly several times. Savour each word, each phrase. If a word or phrase grabs your attention, stay with it. What does it mean to you? What does it remind you of, or make you think about? When you are ready, move on to the next word or phrase. At the end, respond to God in prayer, showing him what you have been thinking about, thanking God, and asking God to help you move forward. Allow 5-10 minutes for this. You may want to repeat this for yourself later – it is worth doing again.
In a time of open prayer together hold before God what you have heard or discovered today. If you feel so moved, say a word, a phrase or short statement about what you have learnt. Allow 5-10 minutes for this.
you looked on Peter with love
even when you knew what he would do.
Look on us with that same love.
You know what we have done.
We are so ashamed.
Have mercy on us.
Restore us in your love.
And help us to go on loving.
In your name we ask this. Amen