Rooster is one of the most overlooked characters in the Lenten Season. It serves as a reminder that humans are sometimes not strong enough to fully embrace Jesus.
For the next two days, we will share with you the story of Saint Peter’s denial of Jesus and the rooster’s role in it.
Jesus told Peter he would deny knowing him. Peter emphatically rejected this, but when a servant of the High Priest recognized Peter, he swore he did not know Jesus. Then he remembered what Jesus had said.
Peter is the most lovable and human of the disciples, as this story shows, but he has flaws as well. Perhaps that is why Jesus chose him to lead the early Church.
At the Last Supper or just afterwards, Jesus told Peter that he would pretend he did not know Jesus – not once, but three times.
“Even if all fall away on account of you, I never will. I tell you the truth,” Peter said. Jesus answered, “This very night, before the rooster crows, you will disown me three times.”
Peter was astounded and hurt. He was the acknowledged leader of Jesus’ disciples, and told Jesus he was ready to die for him. Sadly, the exact opposite would happen: Peter, though he would one day die for Jesus, was not spiritually ready to do so; and Jesus, in the coming hours, would lay down his life for Peter.