Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. If you know me, you will know my Father also. From now on you do know him and have seen him.” Philip said to him, “Lord, show us the Father, and we will be satisfied.” Jesus said to him, “Have I been with you all this time, Philip, and you still do not know me?
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 say to you I do not speak on my own; but the Father who dwells in me does his works. Believe me that I am in the Father and the Father is in me; but if you do not, then believe me because of the works themselves.
Very truly, I tell you, the one who believes in me will also do the works that I do and, in fact, will do greater works than these, because I am going to the Father. I will do whatever you ask in my name, so that the Father may be glorified in the Son. If in my name you ask me for anything, I will do it.
New Revised Standard Version, copyright 1989, by the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved. USCCB approved (http://www.usccb.org/bible/approved-translations
Phillip and James come across as two of the most ordinary apostles: quite unlike the headstrong Peter, the faithful Andrew, the endearing John, the reformed Matthew, or the treacherous Judas, for example. James, in posterity (hopefully!) came to be known as “James, the Lesser.” Philip, in today’s gospel, just doesn’t seem to “get it”; you can almost hear the exasperation in Jesus’ voice when he sighs “have I been with you so long a time and you still do not know me, Philip?”
Together these unsung heroes remind us that maybe the point of encountering Jesus through the Gospels is less about “getting” him and more about giving him away. Which is what makes Philip and James apostles par excellence! “Apostle” means “messenger” and all too often the personality of the messenger all but drowns out the message. Would that we be faithful messengers of the author of the Good News, Jesus! Would that we become “lesser” for the greater glory of God!
—Fr. Charles Rodrigues, S.J., Associate Novice Director at the Jesuit Novitiate of St. Alberto Hurtado, St. Paul, MN. For more information on Jesuit vocations, click here.
With great devotion and new depth of feeling,
I hope and beg, O God, that it finally be given to me
to be the servant and minister of Christ the consoler,
the minister of Christ the redeemer,
the minister of Christ the healer,
the liberator, the enricher, the strengthener.
To be able through you to help many–
to console, liberate and give them courage;
to bring them light not only for their spirit
but also for their bodies,
and bring as well other helps to the soul and body
of each and every one of my neighbors.
I ask this through Christ our Lord. Amen.
—Blessed Peter Faber, S.J., from his MemorialePlease share the Good Word with your friends!