Saint Brigid Religious Education
100 Mayflower Street
West Hartford, CT 06110
St. Philip ~ Apostle
Feast day: May 3
Like the brothers, Peter and Andrew, Philip was a native of Bethsaida on
Lake Genesareth. He also was among those surrounding the Baptist
when the latter first pointed out Jesus as the Lamb of God. On the day
after Peter's call, when about to set out for Galilee, Jesus met Philip
and called him to the Apostolate with the words, "Follow me". Philip
obeyed the call, and a little later brought Nathaniel as a new disciple.
On the occasion of the selection and sending out of the twelve, Philip
is included among the Apostles proper. His name stands in the fifth
place in the three lists after the two pairs of brothers, Peter and
Andrew, James and John. He was at that time a married man, and had
several daughters, but that didn't stop him from meditating continually
on the law and the prophets.
He is mentioned as one of the Apostles in the lists of Matthew, Mark,
Luke, and in Acts. Aside from the lists, he is mentioned only in John in
the New Testament. The Fourth Gospel records three episodes concerning
Philip which occurred during the epoch of the public teaching of the
Savior: 1) Before the miraculous feeding of the multitude, 2)When
some heathens in Jerusalem came to Philip and expressed their desire to
see Jesus, and 3) When Philip, after Christ had spoken to His Apostles
of knowing and seeing the Father. These Gospels show a consistent
character-sketch of Philip as a na´ve, somewhat shy, sober-minded man.
No additional characteristics are given in the Gospels or the Acts,
although he is mentioned in the latter work as belonging to the
No further mention of Philip is made in the New Testament beyond his
listing among the Apostles awaiting the Holy Spirit in the Upper Room.
According to tradition he preached in Greece and was crucified upside
down at Hierapolis under Emperor Domitian.
Philip is buried in Hieropolis with his two daughters, who grew old as
virgins ", and a third daughter, who "led a life in the Holy Ghost and
rests in Ephesus. The Acts does mention four prophetesses, the daughters
of Philip, as then living in Caesarea with their father.
The remains of the Philip who was interred in Hieropolis were later
translated (as those of the Apostle ) to Constantinople and thence to
the church of the Dodici Apostoli in Rome. The feast of the Apostle is
celebrated in the Roman Church on 1 May