Philemon (biblical figure)

Saints Philemon and Apphia
Apostles (Eastern Orthodox)
Martyrs (Latin Rite)
Colossae, Phrygia
Venerated inEastern Orthodox
Roman Catholic Church
Feast22 November (Eastern Orthodox) (Roman Catholic)
February 15 (Lutheran)

Philemon (/fɪˈlmən, f-/; Greek: Φιλήμων) was an early Christian in Asia Minor who was the recipient of a private letter from Paul of Tarsus. This letter is known as Epistle to Philemon in the New Testament. He is known as a saint by several Christian churches along with his wife Apphia. Philemon was a wealthy Christian and a minister (possibly a bishop[1]) of the house church that met in his home.[2]

The Menaia of 22 November speak of Philemon as a holy apostle who, in company with Apphia, Archippus, and Onesimus had been martyred at Colossae during the first general persecution in the reign of Nero.[3] In the list of the Seventy Apostles, attributed to Dorotheus of Tyre, Philemon is described as bishop of Gaza.


  1. ^ Const. Apost., VI, 46
  2. ^ Philemon 1:1–2
  3. ^  One or more of the preceding sentences incorporates text from a publication now in the public domainHerbermann, Charles, ed. (1913). "Philemon" . Catholic Encyclopedia. New York: Robert Appleton.

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