Today St. Philip the Apostle School is celebrating the feast day of Saint Philip. This tradition finds the St. Philip school community gathered in Holy Angel Hall, eating pan dolce and hearing about our patron saint. This year there is a little more of a surprise in store for the students. The teachers are going to put on some skits that help remind us all what it means to be a St. Philip student.
Saint Philip is one of those saints that not too much is known about. I tried searching for him on our various databases and didn’t have much luck. I did find him in the World Book Encyclopedia and Wikipedia. Have I ever mentioned that encyclopedias are my favorite reference tools? They rarely fail me. There is also an entry on him in the Dictionary of Saints by John J. Delaney.
According to World Book, Philip of Bethsaida was one of the 12 Apostles and can be found many times in the Gospel of John. Present at the miracle of the loaves and fishes (John 6:5-7) it is also assumed that Philip was Greek since he was able to communicate with a group of Greeks in John 12:20-22. Philip was present at the Last Supper and was the apostle that asked Jesus if he could see the father (John 14:8-9). According to Richard Edward, the author of the World Book Encyclopedia article, “This special interest in Philip indicates that he was highly regarded by the author of the Gospel of John”.
Lastly, the library does have a dictionary of saints and it has an entry on Saint Philip. I am happy to say that the book confirms the accounts of Philip in the bible according to World Book. Although rest assured, I did also look them up in the bible. The book of Saints tells how Philip is not mentioned further in the New Testament other than being a part of the 12 apostles waiting for the Holy Spirit in Acts 1:13. According to the book tradition dictates that Philip “preached in Greece and was crucified upside down at Hierapolis under Emperor Domitian”.
And that is really all there is to know about Saint Philip. Wikipedia does make some other references and I did find a listing on http://saints.sqpn.com that mentions his character and says he is the patron saint of hatters. But I was not able to confirm this information elsewhere. I also was unable to discover why he is the patron saint of hatter.
- Edwards, Richard A. “Philip of Bethsaida, Saint.” World Book Student. World Book, 2012. Web. 3 May 2012. Delaney, John J.
- Delaney, John J. Dictionary of Saints. Doubleday, New York 1982