Philip, the Deacon, is one of the courageous people who brought Christ's message to the world during the first century. Although his past is unknown, we know from Acts of the Apostles that the 12 Apostles selected him as one of seven trusted deacons who attended to the needs of the growing Church community while Jesus' Apostles devoted themselves to their ministry.
But Philip was too enthusiastic to remain in Jerusalem. In spite of the danger, he went to Samaria, where he was the first disciple to bring Jesus' message. Many Samaritans were so amazed by his words and healing power that they asked to be baptized. Even a man called Simon, admired by most for his ability to perform magic, was astounded by Philip's works and became a follower.
Soon after, an angel told Philip to go to Gaza. On his way, he encountered an Ethiopian official who was confused about a passage he was reading from the prophet Isaiah. Philip explained the passage and told him about Jesus. Impressed, the official asked Philip to baptize him. Possibly the first Gentile convert, the official returned home, where he spread the Gospel to his queen and the people of Ethiopia.
Philip continued to travel and his preaching was so moving and productive that some people called him "the Evangelist". Eventually, he reach Caesarea, where he settled and raised four daughters, all of whom were prophetesses. One of his daughters, Hermione, was martyred and later canonized. Philip was an important instrument in bringing the Gospel to the world.
O Lord Jesus,
gentle and humble of heart,
full of compassion and maker of peace,
you lived in poverty and suffered
persecution for the cause of justice.
You chose the Cross as the path
to glory to show us the way
May we rejoice the word
of the Gospel joyfully
and live by your example as heirs
and citizens of your kingdom.
From Ordinary People, Extraordinary Lives