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Saints Philip and James

Saints Philip and James

Tradition tells us that Saint Philip was from Bethsaida. He was one of the first disciples chosen by Jesus. On the journey from Judea to Galiee Our Lord found Philip and said to him, "Follow Me!"

Philip immediately obeyed.

A saying of Philip's is preserved in the Gospel of John (Jn14). Christ in his last discourse had spoken of His Father, and Philip exclaimed, "Lord show us the Father, and it is enough!"

Jesus replied "Don't you know me Philip, even after I have been with you such a long time? Anyone who has seen me has seen the Father. Believe me when I say that I am in the Father and the Father is in Me."

The tradition is that he died a martyr (by crucifixion) at Hieropolis in Phrygia. There the remains of a church known to have been dedicated to him were found, north of the entrance to the great necropolis.

His relics were later transported to Rome and placed in the Church of the Holy Apostles.

Saint James the Less was from Cana and was the first Bishop of Jerusalem. He was the son of Alpheus, a brother of Saint Jude, and a cousin of Jesus. He governed the church for 30 years before his martyrdom.

The Jews held him is such high regard that they named him "The Just".

He sat beside Saints Peter and Paul at the Council of Jerusalem (around 50AD)

When later on Saint Paul escaped the fury of the Jews by appealing to Caesar, the people took their vengeance on James, crying "The Just has erred", and on the orders of the Jewish High Priest, he was thrown from the pediment of the Temple, and stoned to death, in 62AD.

He prayed for his murderers in the same words as Jesus, "Heavenly Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do".

Saints Philip and James have been honoured together as their relics were placed in the Church of the Holy Apostles in Rome at its consecration in the sixth century.

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