Peter the Apostle, Saint

Peter the Apostle, Saint

biographical name

(died c. AD 64, Rome) Disciple of Jesus, recognized as the leader of the Twelve Apostles. Jesus called him Cephas (Aramaic for “Rock”; rendered in Greek as “Petros”) and said “Upon this rock I will build my church” (Matthew 16:18). When Jesus was arrested, according to the biblical account, Peter denied him three times, as Jesus had foretold. Accounts of Peter's life and ministry rely on the four Gospels, the Acts of the Apostles, the epistles of Peter, and the epistles of St. Paul. Peter worked with Paul in Antioch and later carried on missionary work in Asia Minor. According to tradition, he eventually went to Rome, where he suffered martyrdom by being crucified upside down. Saint Peter's Basilica is said to have been built on the site of his grave in Rome. In Roman Catholicism he is regarded as the first in the unbroken succession of popes. Jesus' promise to give him the “keys of the kingdom” led to the popular perception of Peter as the gatekeeper of heaven. The Roman Catholic church celebrates five feast days in honour of Peter, and in each the name of Paul is associated.


Peter the Apostle, Saint orig. Simon

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