Today the Catholic Church commemorates the Feast Day of Saint Philip and Saint James, two of the twelve apostles chosen by Jesus Christ to spread the Good News to the ends of the earth. Though their names may be as familiar as some of their counterparts, their steadfast commitment to Christ and their bold witness to the Gospel continue to inspire believers around the world.

Saint Philip and Saint James were among the earliest followers of Jesus, called to leave behind their livelihoods and families to become fishers of men. Alongside their fellow apostles, they journeyed with Jesus, witnessed His miracles, and received His teachings firsthand. After the resurrection, they spread the message of salvation, laying the foundation for the early Christian Church.

Philip is often remembered for his quest for truth and understanding. In the Gospel of John, we see him grappling with questions and seeking clarity from Jesus Himself. His encounter with the Ethiopian eunuch, whom he guided to a deeper understanding of Scripture, exemplifies his role as a faithful disciple and evangelist. Philip’s humility and openness to God’s guidance serve as an example for all who seek to know and follow Christ.

James, also known as James the Just, distinguished himself through his life of prayer and service to the early Christian community. As the leader of the Church in Jerusalem, he played a pivotal role in guiding and shepherding the faithful amidst persecution and challenges. His emphasis on the importance of both faith and works underscores the integral connection between belief and action in the Christian life.

The lives of Saint Philip and Saint James reflect the essence of the apostolic mission: to proclaim the Gospel with zeal and to bear witness to the love and mercy of Christ. Like them, we are called to share the Good News in word and deed, reaching out to those in need and inviting others into a deeper relationship with Jesus Christ. Their feast day serves as a reminder of our shared responsibility to continue the work of evangelisation and discipleship in our time.

As we celebrate the Feast of Saint Philip and Saint James, let us take time to reflect on their lives and the example they set for us. May we, like them, be faithful disciples and bold witnesses to the truth of the Gospel. Let us pray for the grace to follow their example of humility, courage and love, trusting in God’s providence as we strive to fulfil the mission entrusted to us.

On this Feast Day of Saint Philip and Saint James, let us honour their memory and recommit ourselves to the work of building God’s kingdom here on Earth. May their intercession strengthen us in our faith and inspire us to live lives worthy of our calling as followers of Christ. May their example inspire us to embrace our own call to mission and to share the joy of the Gospel with all whom we encounter.

Saint Philip and Saint James – Pray for us