Wednesday July 19th: Thank You Jesus
July 19, 2023
Thursday July 20th: “Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden.”
July 20, 2023

The Primacy of Peter as told by a Holy Land tour guide

Imagine you are in Jerusalem after the Resurrection, and your name is Peter.

“And everybody knows you are the chief, you are the oldest…believe me, each moment you receive a phone call, email, WhatsApp ‘Are you sure you saw Him?’, ‘Are you sure He’s resurrected?’, ‘Are you sure, are you sure’?” … It’s a headache…” surmised Anton Farah, a licensed pilgrimage tour guide in Israel.

Affectionately nicknamed the ‘Walking Encyclopaedia’ Farah was born in Upper Galilee and resides in Nazareth. He is fluent in Arabic, Hebrew and English and volunteers as a guide to local, indigenous Christian groups from different denominations to deepen their knowledge and connection to the Holy Land.

Farah served as pilgrimage tour guide to a group of Trinidadians including Archbishop Charles Jason Gordon for a spiritual tour of Egypt, Jordan, Israel and London May 9–25, 2023.

Pointing to the location where Peter went fishing following Christ’s crucifixion, Farah concluded Peter knew “every inch” around the sea.

“When this water goes to the sea of Galilee, the top, the surface of the water is warmer than down so what will happen, the fish goes up to where the fresh water meets with the water that contains more salt, that’s why it’s a very good place for fishing,” Farah said.

Also pointing to the “beautiful” chapel on the site, Farah told the contingent the chapel is built above a rock referred to as the Rock of Co-primacy.

Farah spoke of Peter’s declaration “I’ll go fishing”, a return to his former occupation amidst Christ’s crucifixion.

He said when Jesus appeared to the disciples after His Resurrection and told them “Bring some of the fish you just caught” (Jn 21:10), unlike Mary Magdalene who recognised Jesus by His voice, and the two disciples on the road to Emmaus who recognised Him in the breaking of bread (Lk 22:19), the disciples knew Jesus from His blessings.

“When the net was heavy, what did John say, ‘impossible, this is the Lord’s, you cannot take all these blessings without Him’,” Farah said.

Farah surmised after Jesus prepared a meal of charcoaled fish for the disciples to eat, they did not have the courage to look Him in the eyes.

“Why? Because shy. How we did not know Him?”

Farah reminded the contingent of Jesus’ instruction in John 21: “Come follow me.”

“When He invited him [Peter], He’s inviting him to the cross. This is the invitation of love,” Farah said.

Of love, Farah commented there is no end to love. Love, he said, is not love as we know it.

“It is [a] little piece of the love but enjoy it. And the Church is built above the rock of primacy, prime means number one, …in love,” Farah said.