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Saint Philip the Apostle

Saint Philip the Apostle
  • Century: 1st Century
  • Patronage: Pastry Chefs, Hat Makers, San Felipe Pueblo, Uruguay
  • Feast Day: May 3rd

We know some things about St. Philip through the Gospel of St. John.  It is here he describes Philip’s calling as a disciple of Jesus.  He is described as a disciple from the city of Bethsaida, and connects him to Andrew and Peter, who were from the same time.  It also connects Philip to Nathanael who Philip first introduces to Jesus.  Jesus tested Philip about how to feed 5,000 people (John 6:4-7), “The Jewish Passover Festival was near.  When Jesus looked up and saw a great crowd coming toward him, he said to Philip, where shall we buy bread for these people to eat?  He asked this only to test him, for he already had in mind what he was going to do.  Philip answered him, it would take more than half a year’s wage to buy enough bread for each one to have a bite”.   Also Philip is approached by some who wanted to see Jesus, John 12:20-21, “Now there were some Greeks among those who went up to worship at the festival.  They came to Philip, who was from Bethsaida in Galilee, with a request.  Sir, they said, we would like to see Jesus”.  

Of the four Gospels, Philip is most mentioned in the Gospel of St. John.  His two most notable appearances in the Gospel surround him in the Greek community.  Philip bore a Greek name, and it is assumed that he spoke Greek, and introduces members of his community to Jesus.  It was during the Last Supper, when Philip asked Jesus to show them the Father.  He provides Jesus the opportunity to teach his disciples about the unity of the Father and the Son.  Philip is always listed fifth among the Apostles.  

Tradition has it that Philip was martyred by beheading in the city of Hierapolis.  Philip is commonly associated with the symbol of the Latin Cross.  Other symbols assigned to Philip include, the cross with two loaves, a basket filled with bread, a spear with the patriarchal cross, and a cross with a carpenter’s square.  The tomb of St. Philip was discovered in July 2011, and announced by the Turkish news agency.  Excavators discovered Philip’s tomb in Hierapolis, close to the Turkish city of Denizli.  It was discovered when a newly found church was excavated.  It contained writings on the walls, and the design of the tomb definitely proved it had belonged to the martyred Apostle of Jesus, according to archeologists.  

Practical Take Away 

St. Philip was an Apostle of Jesus.  Of the four Gospels, Philip is most mentioned in the Gospel of St. John.  His two most notable appearances in the Gospel surround him in the Greek community.  Philip bore a Greek name, and it is assumed that he spoke Greek, and introduces members of his community to Jesus.  It was during the Last Supper, when Philip asked Jesus to show them the Father.  He provides Jesus the opportunity to teach his disciples about the unity of the Father and the Son.  Philip is always listed fifth among the Apostles.  It is believed that he was beheaded in the city of Hierapolis, and in 2011, archeologists unearthed a Church that has writings on the walls, and a tomb that bears the name of Philip, Apostle of Jesus.