Fr Paul reads from the Gospel of John (14: 6-14) in which Jesus tells his disciples, ‘I am the way, the truth, and the life. No-one can come to the father except through me. If you know me you know my father, too’.After reading the Gospel, Fr Paul shares a little about the apostles, Saint Philip and Saint James, whose lives we celebrate today. Philip, who we hear of in today’s Gospel, was born in Bethsaida. He started out as a disciple of John the Baptist. When the Baptist was killed, Philip became a follower of Jesus. The James we celebrate today is James, the son of Alphaeus, who was also called James the Less, which distinguished him from the other James, the son of Zebedee. James the Less is the one who ruled the church of Jerusalem. He wrote an epistle. He lived an austere life and converted many Jews to the faith. James was martyred in 62AD. When this feast started in 560AD, it was thought that the two James’s Fr Paul mentions were the same person. It is only over time, he says, that scholars came to believe they were two different people. In the tradition of our Church, Fr Paul invites us to ask ‘Saint Philip and Saint James, Pray for us!
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