3 May 2022 Saints Philip and James, Apostles
For I handed on to you as of first importance what I in turn had received: that Christ died for our sins in accordance with the scriptures, and that he was buried, and that he was raised on the third day in accordance with the scriptures, and that he appeared to Cephas, then to the twelve. Then he appeared to more than five hundred brothers and sisters at one time, most of whom are still alive, though some have died. Then he appeared to James, then to all the apostles. Last of all, as to someone untimely born, he appeared also to me.
From 1 Corinthians 15:1-8, NRSV
Today the Church celebrates the Feast of the apostles Philip and James. Although Jesus called them to be apostles, they are not mentioned as much in the gospels as some of the other apostles. We are told that Philip responded directly to Jesus’ call and that he then invited his skeptical friend Nathanael to “come and see”. Other references to Philip show him as a man whose faith sometimes faltered and who needed proof that Jesus was the Son of God. We know that James was likely a relative of Jesus but not much else. Although their stories are less well known, it is clear that Jesus saw something important in them and therefore chose them to share his ministry. Both devoted their lives to the Gospel and paid the ultimate sacrifice for their faith. Although they were martyred at different times and places, their bodies were moved and buried together in the Church of the Twelve Apostles in Rome.
- Why do you think Philip and James were called to be apostles ?
- Who are the people in our own communities that play quiet but essential roles?
Give thanks for all who minister to others in quiet and perhaps unseen ways.