Thứ Ba, 2 tháng 5, 2017

MAY 03, 2017 : FEAST OF SAINTS PHILIP AND JAMES

Feast of Saints Philip and James, Apostles
Lectionary: 561

Reading 11 COR 15:1-8
I am reminding you, brothers and sisters,
of the Gospel I preached to you,
which you indeed received and in which you also stand.
Through it you are also being saved,
if you hold fast to the word I preached to you,
unless you believed in vain.
For I handed on to you as of first importance what I also received:
that Christ died for our sins
in accordance with the Scriptures;
that he was buried;
that he was raised on the third day
in accordance with the Scriptures;
that he appeared to Cephas, then to the Twelve.
After that, he appeared to more
than five hundred brothers and sisters at once,
most of whom are still living,
though some have fallen asleep.
After that he appeared to James,
then to all the Apostles.
Last of all, as to one born abnormally,
he appeared to me.

Responsorial PsalmPS 19:2-3, 4-5
R. (5) Their message goes out through all the earth.
or:
R. Alleluia.
The heavens declare the glory of God;
and the firmament proclaims his handiwork.
Day pours out the word to day;
and night to night imparts knowledge.
R. Their message goes out through all the earth.
or:
R. Alleluia.
Not a word nor a discourse
whose voice is not heard;
Through all the earth their voice resounds,
and to the ends of the world, their message.
R. Their message goes out through all the earth.
or:
R. Alleluia.

AlleluiaJN 14:6B, 9C
R. Alleluia, alleluia.
I am the way, the truth, and the life, says the Lord;
Philip, whoever has seen me has seen the Father.
R. Alleluia, alleluia.

GospelJN 14:6-14
Jesus said to Thomas, "I am the way and the truth and the life.
No one comes to the Father except through me.
If you know me, then you will also know my Father.
From now on you do know him and have seen him."
Philip said to him, 
"Master, show us the Father, and that will be enough for us."
Jesus said to him, "Have I been with you for so long a time
and you still do not know me, Philip?
Whoever has seen me has seen the Father.
How can you say, 'Show us the Father'?
Do you not believe that I am in the Father and the Father is in me?
The words that I speak to you I do not speak on my own.
The Father who dwells in me is doing his works. 
Believe me that I am in the Father and the Father is in me,
or else, believe because of the works themselves.
Amen, amen, I say to you,
whoever believes in me will do the works that I do,
and will do greater ones than these,
because I am going to the Father.
And whatever you ask in my name, I will do,
so that the Father may be glorified in the Son.
If you ask anything of me in my name, I will do it."


Meditation: "Lord, show us the Father"
What's the greatest thing we can aim for in this life? - To know God. What is the best thing we can possess in this life, bringing more joy, contentment, and happiness, than anything else? - Knowledge of God. Thus says the Lord: "Let not the wise man glory in his wisdom, let not the mighty glory in his might, let not the rich man glory in his riches; but let him who glories glory in this, that he understands and knows me" (Jeremiah 9:23-24). One of the greatest truths of the Christian faith is that we can know the living God. Our knowledge of God is not simply limited to knowing something about God, but we can know God personally. The essence of Christianity, and what makes it distinct from Judaism and other religions, is the personal knowledge of God as our Father.
Jesus makes it possible for each of us to personally know God as our Father. To see Jesus is to see what God is like. In Jesus we see the perfect love of God - a God who cares intensely and who yearns over men and women, loving them to the point of laying down his life for them upon the Cross. Jesus is the revelation of God - a God who loves us unconditionally - without reservation, unselfishly - for our sake and not his, and perfectly - without neglecting or forgetting us even for a brief moment. Jesus promises that God the Father will hear our prayers when we pray in his name. That is why Jesus taught his followers to pray with confidence, Our Father who art in heaven ..give us this day our daily bread (Matthew 6:9,11; Luke 11:2-3) Do you pray to your Father in heaven with joy and confidence in his love and care for you?
"Lord Jesus, you fill us with the joy of your saving presence and you give us the hope of everlasting life with God our Father in Heaven. Show me the Father that I may know and glorify him always."
Daily Quote from the early church fathersAll nature serves for our instruction, by Leo the Great, 400-461 A.D.
"All nature serves the Word of God for our instruction. Through all the turning points of the year, as if through the four Gospels, we learn from the unceasing trumpet both what we should preach and what we should do... What is there through which the truth does not speak to us? Its voice is heard in the day, it is heard in the night, and the beauty of all things, established by the work of one God, does not cease to put into the ears of our hearts a ruling order, to let us see the 'invisible things of God through those which have been made intelligible to us,' and it is subject not to the creatures but to the Creator of all things." (excerpt from Sermon 19,2)

FEAST OF SAINTS PHILIP AND JAMES, APOSTLES
WEDNESDAY, MAY 3, JOHN 14:6-14

(1 Corinthians 15:1-8; Psalm 19)

KEY VERSE: "The one who believes in me will also do the works that I do" (v. 12).
TO KNOW: Jesus told his disciples that he was the "way" to God's "truth and life" (v.6). When Philip asked for some manifestation of the Father, Jesus told him that if he really understood who he was, he would "see" the Father. Jesus was the flesh and blood revelation of God. His words and works were not his alone; they came from his unity with the Father. If Jesus' disciples could not believe what he told them, then at least they should believe in the deeds that he did. He promised that those who had faith in him would be empowered by the Spirit to do even greater works than he had done. When Jesus returned to the Father, he would continually intercede on their behalf (Ro 8:34; Hb 4:14 - 5:10).
TO LOVE: Do I hand on the faith that I have received, just as the apostles did in their time?
TO SERVE: St. Philip and St. James, pray that the Church will have the grace to accomplish Christ's works on earth as you did.

SAINT PHILIP AND SAINT JAMES, APOSTLES

Philip was born in Bethsaida, Galilee, and may have been a disciple of Saint John the Baptist. Philip was called by Jesus (Jn 1:43-48) on the day after Peter and Andrew. Philip began his evangelizing efforts by bringing Nathaniel (Bartholomew) to Jesus. When Nathaniel asked, "Can anything good come from Nazareth?" Philip replied: "Come and see" (Jn 1:43). Philip was present at the miracle of the loaves and fishes (6:1-15), and was the Apostle approached by the Hellenistic Jews from Bethsaida to introduce them to Jesus (12:21ff). Just before the Passion, Jesus answered Philip's query to show them the Father (14:8ff), but 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 (Acts 1:13). According to tradition, Philip preached in Greece and was crucified at Hierapolis in Phrygia under Emperor Domitian, c. 80 AD.



Wednesday 3 May 2017

Ss Philip & James.
1 Corinthians 15:1‑8. Psalms 18(19):2-5. John 14:6-14.
Their message goes out through all the earth — Psalms 18(19):2-5.
‘Still you do not know me.’
Jesus’ words often reveal his discouragement. After months with his disciples, they still seem to miss the essentials. Yet each moment like this is a new chance to know him and for Jesus himself to make clear who he really is.
Despite all the many ways Jesus has revealed himself to us, we, too, misunderstand him. It is as though we seek for more, rather than search more deeply for what we have already. With Philip, our failure reveals a new possibility amidst discouragement. Our searchings are begun through the one whom we seek; and all our wanderings lead eventually to him.
Lord, let us see you as you are.

STS. PHILIP AND JAMES THE LESS, APOSTLES

Philip was born in Bethsaida in Galilee and was one of the 12 Apostles that Jesus called. Immediately, Philip began to convert others, finding his friend Nathaniel and telling him that Jesus was the one whom Moses and the other prophets had foretold.
James the Less is called “Less” because he was younger than the other Apostle by the same name, James the Great. James the less was realted in some wayJesus, and after Jesus’ Ascension into heaven, he became the head of the Church in Jerusalem. He was martyred in the year 62.

LECTIO DIVINA: STS. PHILIP AND JAMES, APOSTLES
Lectio Divina: 
 Wednesday, May 3, 2017

1) OPENING PRAYER
Lord our God,
we praise and thank you on the feast
of your apostles Philip and James.
Through them many have come to know
that Jesus is alive and risen.
May we too be good witnesses
to the risen Jesus
by the way we live his risen life,
even though we are flawed and weak,
that people may find through us
the way to the Father of Jesus our Lord.
2) GOSPEL READING - JOHN 14,6-14
Jesus said: I am the Way; I am Truth and Life. No one can come to the Father except through me. If you know me, you will know my Father too. From this moment you know him and have seen him.
Philip said, 'Lord, show us the Father and then we shall be satisfied.' Jesus said to him, 'Have I been with you all this time, Philip, and you still do not know me? 'Anyone who has seen me has seen the Father, so how can you say, "Show us the Father"? Do you not believe that I am in the Father and the Father is in me?
What I say to you I do not speak of my own accord: it is the Father, living in me, who is doing his works. You must believe me when I say that I am in the Father and the Father is in me; or at least believe it on the evidence of these works. In all truth I tell you, whoever believes in me will perform the same works as I do myself, and will perform even greater works, because I am going to the Father.
Whatever you ask in my name I will do, so that the Father may be glorified in the Son. If you ask me anything in my name, I will do it.
3) REFLECTION
• Today’s Gospel, the Feast of the Apostles Philip and James, is the same one as we meditated on during the 4th week of Easter, and narrates the request of the Apostle Philip to Jesus: “Show us the Father, and that is enough for us”.
• John 14, 6: I am the way, I am Truth and Life: Thomas had addressed a question to Jesus: “Lord, we do not know where you are going. How can we know the way?” (Jn 14, 5). Jesus answers: “I am the way, I am Truth and Life. No one can come to the Father except through me”. Three important words. Without the way, we cannot walk. Without the truth one cannot make a good choice. Without life, there is only death! Jesus explains the sense. He is the way, because no one “comes to the Father except through me”. And he is the gate through which the sheep go in and out (Jn 10, 9). Jesus is the Truth because looking at him, we are seeing the image of the Father. “If you know me, you will know my Father too!” Jesus is Life, because walking like Jesus we will be united to the Father and will have life in us!
• John 14, 7: To know Jesus is to know the Father. Thomas had asked: “Lord, we do not know where you are going. How can we know the way?” Jesus answers: “I am the way, I am Truth and Life! No one comes to the Father except through me”. And he adds: “If you know me, you will know my Father too. From this moment you have known him and have seen him”. This is the first phrase of today’s Gospel. Jesus always speaks about the Father, because it was the life of the Father that appeared in everything that he said and did. This continuous reference to the Father causes Philip to ask the question.
• John 14, 8-11: Philip asks: “Show us the Father and then we will be satisfied!” It was the desire of the disciples, the desire of many persons of the communities of the Beloved Disciple and it is the desire of many people today. What do people do to see the Father of whom Jesus speaks so much? Jesus’ answer is very beautiful and it is valid even today: “Have I been with you all this time, Philip, and you still do not know me? Anyone who has seen me has seen the Father!” People should not think that God is far away from us, at a distance and unknown. Anyone who wants to know how and who is God the Father, it suffices for him to look at Jesus. He has revealed him in the words and gestures of his life! “The Father is in me and I am in the Father!” Through his obedience, Jesus has totally identified himself with the Father. At every moment he did what the Father told him to do (Jn 5, 30; 8, 28-29.38). This is why in Jesus, everything is the revelation of the Father! And the signs or works are the works of the Father! As people say: “The son is the face of the father!” This is why in Jesus and for Jesus, God is in our midst.
• John 14, 12-14: The Promise of Jesus. Jesus makes a promise to say that his intimacy with the Father is not a privilege only for him, but it is possible for all those who believe in him. We also, through Jesus, can be able to do beautiful things for others as Jesus did for the people of his time. He intercedes for us. Everything that people ask from him, he asks the Father and obtains it, always if it is to serve. Jesus is our defender. He leaves but he does not leave us without defence. He promises that he will ask the Father and the Father will send another defender and consoler, the Holy Spirit. Jesus even said that it is necessary that he leaves, because otherwise the Holy Spirit will not come (Jn 16, 7). And the Holy Spirit will fulfil the things of Jesus in us, if we act in the name of Jesus and observe the great commandment of the practice of love.
4) FOR PERSONAL CONFRONTATION
• Jesus is the way, the Truth and the Life. Without the way, without Truth and without life we cannot live. Try to make this enter your conscience.
• Two important questions: who is Jesus for me? Who am I for Jesus?
5) CONCLUDING PRAYER
The heavens declare the glory of God,
the vault of heaven proclaims his handiwork,
day discourses of it to day,
night to night hands on the knowledge. (Ps 19,1-2)