Feast of Saint Philip and Saint James

Readings for Tuesday May 3, 2011

Feast of Saint Philip and Saint James, Apostles

First Reading: 1 Corinthians 15:1-8
Responsorial Psalm: Psalm 19
Gospel: John 14:6-14

Jesus said to Thomas, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. If you know me, then you will also know my Father. From now on you do know him and have seen him.” Philip said to him, “Master, show us the Father, and that will be enough for us.” Jesus said to him, “Have I been with you for so long a time and you still do not know me, Philip? Whoever has seen me has seen the Father. How can you say, ‘Show us the Father’? Do you not believe that I am in the Father and the Father is in me? The words that I speak to you I do not speak on my own. The Father who dwells in me is doing his works. Believe me that I am in the Father and the Father is in me, or else, believe because of the works themselves. (Jn 14:6-11)

In his first letter to the Church at Corinth, Saint Paul describes who Jesus appeared to, Cephas, the twelve, and many other brothers. He also describes how Christ appeared to him as well, and he goes on in his letter to say that he is the "least of the apostles, not fit to be called an apostle." (v. 9) This begs the question, what did it take to be called an apostle? What qualities or characteristics were needed to have this designation?

Today we celebrate the feast day of Saint Philip and Saint James, both apostles. Both of these men demonstrate characteristics as apostles that each of us should be striving for in our lives. Obviously being an apostle meant that they actually had the gift of being with Jesus, knowing Him and spreading the good news to all. It is some of these qualities that we should be seeking in our own lives. We like Saint Philip and Saint James should be seeking every day to spend time with Jesus in prayer. We should be trying to know Him and like Him always seek the Father's will in our lives. We should take on the mission of Christ to spread the good news to all, because all are deserving of His endless love and mercy.

Philip and James did not have a walk in the park throughout their lives. They had to struggle and strive for Holiness each and every day of their lives. While the faith journey is not an easy one, it is one that we should all be striving for, because it is the only way to heaven.

Saint Philip and Saint James, pray for us!

Father above, we thank you and praise you for the gift of this day. Lord, thank you for all that you have blessed us with. Help us to persevere through all that life brings, and help us to only seek your will. You are our God, and we are your people, help us to share the good news with all that we encounter. We ask this all through Christ our Lord. Amen.

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