Mary the Mother of Jesus
Jesus Chooses the Twelve
Mt. 5, 1;10, 1-4, Mk. 3, 13-19, Lk. 6, 12-16
In these days he went out into the hills to pray; and all night he continued in prayer to God. 
And when it was day, he called his disciples, and chose from them twelve, whom he named apostles;
Simon whom he named, Peter, and Andrew his brother, {received from Christ the honourable title of Boanerges, i.e. "sons of thunder"
and James and John, and Philip, and Bartholomew, and Matthew, and Thomas, and James the son of Alphaeus,
and Simon who was called the Zealot, and Judas the son of James, and Judas Iscariot, who became a traitor.
Peter, prince of the Apostles, vice-regent of Christ;  Paul, the Apostle of the Gentiles;  Andrew, who first heeded the call of the Master; James the Greater
and John the Evangelist, the beloved disciple, who, with St. Peter, were most favoured by Christ;  Thomas, called Didymus, who received from Christ signal proofs of His Resurrection;
James the Less, first Bishop of Jerusalem;  PhilipBartholomewMatthew, once called Levi, the toll-gatherer, who wrote the First Gospel;  Simon the Zealot;
Jude Thaddeus
Matthias, who was chosen to fill the place of Judas Iscariot;  Barnabas, called to the Apostolate by the Holy Ghost (Acts 13:2);
, the physician, writer of the Third Gospel and the Acts;  Mark, the Evangelist, disciple of St. Peter
Apostles statues  in the Basilica of Saint Mary Minneapolis Minnesota
The marble supporting the entablature of Botticino marble forms the pedestal for the statues of the Apostles.  These six-foot marble figures are half-size replicas of the sculptures in the Church of St. John Lateran in Rome.
From the west (pulpit) side they are: Saints Simon (saw), Bartholomew (knife), James the Lesser (book), John (eagle), Andrew (transverse cross), Peter (keys), Paul (sword), James the Greater (staff), Thomas (carpenter's square), Philip (serpent), Matthew (book), and Jude (sword).

Simon Peter  Andrew's brother
(Gr., andreia, manhood, or valour)
James the Greater
St. John Mark bishop
John Page Site
Philip called by Jesus
James the lesser
James the Lesser
Matthew called by Jesus

John  Mark author of the second Gospel

Bartholomew Nathanael
means "son of Talmai"
"Cananaean" & "Zealot."
Jude  Thaddaeus Thaddaeus means "magnanimous."
Judas Thaddaeus more here
Brother of James the Less

Matthias in place of
Judas Iscariot

To the list of the Twelve Apostles
other people who played a prominent part in early Christianity.
Timothy  Pages
how many apostles? St. James in Spain Saint Jude Thaddaeus
Paul of Tarsus
Luke John Mark

how many apostles?
Although traditionally there are twelve Apostles, they are chosen from a pool of sixteen, listed below.
Each man has one or more symbols, which can vary, to enable their recognition.
For those that were martyred (killed), one of the symbols will be the method of killing:
* Bartholomew: large knife, processional cross, human skin (he was flayed alive).
* John the evangelist [gospel writer]: youngest apostle so shaven, book (sometimes open), chalice with a dragon or serpent.
* (Simon) Peter: key(s) to heaven, triple cross, fish. * James the Greater: pilgrim’s staff, scallop shell/s, large pilgrim’s hat, book, scroll, sword. *St James was banished to the (then) furthest point from Rome: Compostella on the tip of Spain, since then a popular christianist pilgrimage destination. * James the Lesser: book, fuller’s club.
* Jude Thaddeus: medallion with profile of Jesus, boat, anchor, pen, book, axe. * Matthew: winged man, pen, inkwell, bag of coins, money box, purse, spear,sword, halberd, lance. * Philip: elderly man, basket of loaves, T-shaped cross. * Simon Zealot: large saw, oar, two fish, lance. * Thomas: builder’s T-square, spear. * Judas Iscariot: noose.
Some of these apostles may be exchanged for: * Mark the evangelist: book, winged lion. * Luke the Evangelist: book. * Mathias: lance. (Mathias was chosen by the other apostles after Judas betrayed Jesus.) * Paul: cross-hilted sword.
The exchanges are: * Judas may be replaced by Mathias * Simon or may be replaced by Luke or Mark * Mathias may be replaced by Luke or Mark * Jude Thaddeus may be replaced by Paul.
On the Apostles Simon and Jude Thaddaeus
"Our Identity Is Not to Be Toyed With" VATICAN CITY, OCT. 11, 2006

Here is a translation of Benedict XVI's address at this Wednesday's General Audience, dedicated to presenting the figure of the Apostles Simon the Cananaean and Jude called Thaddaeus.
Dear Brothers and Sisters,  Today we take into consideration two of the Twelve Apostles: Simon the Cananaean and Jude called Thaddaeus (not to be confused with Judas Iscariot). We consider them together, not only because in the lists of the Twelve they are always mentioned next to one another (cf. Matthew 10:4; Mark 3:18; Luke 6:15; Acts 1:13), but also because there is not much information about them, apart from the fact that the New Testament Canon has a letter attributed to Jude Thaddaeus.

Simon receives an epithet that varies in the four lists: while Matthew and Mark describe him as "Cananaean," Luke instead describes him as "Zealot." In reality, the two qualifications are equivalent, because they mean the same thing: In the Hebrew language, in fact, the verb "qanà'" means "to be zealous, passionate" and can be said either of God, in as much as he is jealous of the people chosen by him (cf. Exodus 20:5), or of men who burn with zeal in serving the one God with complete dedication, as Elias (cf. 1 Kings 19:10).
It is quite possible, therefore, that this Simon, if he does not actually belong to the nationalist movement of the Zealots, was at least characterized by an ardent zeal for Jewish identity, hence for God, for his people and for the divine law. If this is the case, Simon is in the antipodes of Matthew who on the contrary, insofar as publican, came from an activity considered altogether impure.

Evident sign that Jesus calls his disciples and collaborators from the most diverse social and religious strata, without any preclusion.  He is interested in people, not in social categories or etiquette!
And the beautiful thing is that in the groups of his followers, all, though diverse, from the zealot to the publican, coexisted together, surmounting the imagined difficulties: Jesus himself, in fact, was the motive for cohesion, in whom all found themselves united. And this constitutes clearly a lesson for us, often inclined to underline the differences and perhaps the oppositions, forgetting that in Jesus Christ the strength is given to us to compose our conflicts.

And let's also keep in mind that the group of the Twelve is a pre-figuration of the Church and prefigures therefore the Church in which there must be room for all the charisms, peoples, races, all human qualities, which find their composition and unity in communion with Jesus. 

In regard to Jude Thaddaeus, he is called thus by tradition, uniting together two different names: while Matthew and Mark call him simply "Thaddaeus" (Matthew 10:3; Mark 3:18), Luke calls him "Judas the son of James" (Luke 6:16; Acts 1:13). The nickname Thaddaeus is of uncertain derivation and is explained as coming from the Aramaic "taddà'," which means "breast" and hence would mean "magnanimous," or as an abbreviation of a Greek name like "Theodore, Teodoto." Little is said about him.  Only John notes a request of his made to Jesus during the Last Supper: Thaddaeus says to the Lord: "Lord, how is it that you will manifest yourself to us, and not to the world?"
It is a question of great present importance, which we also ask the Lord: Why has not the risen one manifested himself in all his glory to his adversaries to show that he is the victor? Why did God manifest himself only to the disciples? Jesus' answer is mysterious and profound.  The Lord says: "If a man loves me, he will keep my word, and my Father will love him, and we will come to him and make our home with him" (John 14:22-23). This means that the Risen One must be seen, perceived, also with the heart, so that God can make his dwelling in him. The Lord does not appear as a thing. The Lord wishes to enter into our lives and because of this, his manifestation is a manifestation that implies and presupposes an open heart. Only thus do we see the Risen One.  

To Jude Thaddaeus was attributed in past times the authorship of one of the letters of the New Testament that were called "catholic" in as much as they were addressed to a very large circle of recipients. It in fact was addressed "to the elect that live in the love of God the Father and have been preserved by Jesus Christ" (verse 1).

Central concern of this writing is to put Christians on guard from all those who give as pretext the grace of God to excuse their own licentiousness and to lead astray other brothers with unacceptable teachings, introducing divisions within the Church "under the influence of their dreams" (verse 8). Jude compares them in fact to the fallen angels, and with strong words says "they followed the path of Cain" (verse 11).  Moreover, he labels them without hesitation "as clouds without rain blown away by the wind or trees at the end of the season without fruits, twice dead, uprooted; as wild waves of the sea, which foam their filth; like errant stars, to which is reserved the fog of darkness in eternity" (verses 12-13).  

Today we are no longer in the habit of using such controversial language, which nevertheless tells us something important: That in all the existing temptations, with all the currents of modern life, we must preserve the identity of our faith. Of course the path of indulgence and dialogue, which the Second Vatican Council has felicitously undertaken, will surely be continued with firm constancy. But this path of dialogue, so necessary, must not make us forget the duty to rethink and to witness always with as much force the guiding lines of our Christian identity that cannot be given up.  It is important to keep very present that this, our identity is not to be toyed with on a simply cultural plane or on a superficial level, but requires strength, clarity and courage given the contradictions of the world in which we live.

For this reason, the text of the letter continues thus: "But you, beloved, build yourselves up on your most holy faith, pray in the Holy Spirit; keep yourselves in the love of God, wait for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ unto eternal life; be convinced, those of you who are vacillating ..." (verse 20-22). 

We see clearly that the author of these lines lives his faith in full, to which great realities belong such as moral integrity and joy, trust and finally praise, all being motivated only by the goodness of our one God and the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ. Therefore, may both Simon the Cananaean as well as Jude Thaddaeus help us to rediscover always anew and to live tirelessly the beauty of the Christian faith, knowing how to give both strong and serene witness.  [Translation by ZENIT]  

[At the end of the audience, the Holy Father greeted pilgrims in several languages. In English, he said:]  Dear Brothers and Sisters,  In our weekly catechesis on the Church's apostolic ministry, we consider today the two Apostles Simon and Jude.
Simon is called "Cananaean" and "Zealot." Both expressions stress his passionate attachment to his Jewish identity. That Simon could live in harmony with Matthew the tax collector in the same community, shows us how in the Church, through the grace of Christ, differences can be overcome.
The other apostle, Jude, is sometimes called Thaddaeus. When he asks a question regarding the Lord's manifestation to the apostles rather than to others, Jesus insists on the need for love as an inner preparation for the presence of God in our soul.  
In the letter of the New Testament, traditionally attributed to the Apostle Jude, a strong emphasis is placed on keeping true to our Christian identity. Sustained by the grace of Christ, we must be steadfast in our faith and moral values, while respecting others and remaining open to dialogue. As we bear witness to the truth that has been revealed to us, we are encouraged by the Apostle's words:
"Build yourselves up on your most holy faith, pray in the Holy Spirit; keep yourselves in the love of God, wait for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ unto eternal life" (Jude 20-21).  I offer a warm welcome to all the English-speaking groups, pilgrims and visitors present at today's audience, especially the Missionary Sisters of the Immaculate. I pray that your stay in Rome will renew your faith and that the Lord will keep you strong in your Christian identity, following the example of the Apostles Simon and Jude. May God bless you all!  ZE06101105
Turning to consider the figure of Jude, Benedict XVI explained how his name of Thaddaeus means "magnanimous." This Apostle's question to the Lord during the Last Supper - "how is that You will manifest Yourself to us, and not to the world?" - prompted "Jesus' indirect reply" which, said the Pope "affirms a very important truth: the full manifestation of Jesus to His disciples is not exterior but interior, it is conditioned by the disciple's love.
To Jude Thaddaeus is attributed ... one of the Letters of the New Testament," the principal theme of which "is to warn Christians from all those who use the grace of God as a pretext for their own dissoluteness and to mislead their brethren with unacceptable teachings, introducing divisions within the Church."
"Today, perhaps, we are no longer accustomed to using such polemical language which, though adopting beautiful poetic imagery, does not fail to state with great clarity both what is distinctive of Christianity and what is incompatible with it.
The path of tolerance and dialogue ... taken by Vatican Council II must certainly be continued with firmness and constancy. This must not, however, make us forget the duty to reconsider and highlight the irrefutable guiding lines of our Christian identity." An identity which is not merely cultural "but requires strength, clarity and courage of conviction."
Following the audience, the Pope blessed a statue of St. Edith Stein  placed in a niche on the outside of St. Peter's Basilica. The Discalced Carmelite saint was canonized by John Paul II eight years ago today.
James the Greater
Click on Picture for large image
(Heb. Yakob; Sept. Iakob; N.T. Greek Iakobos; a favourite name among the later Jews).
was the brother of John the Evangelist and one of Jesus' three special friends (the others were Peter and John).  He was the first of the Apostles to suffer martyrdom and died under Agrippa I who had him beheaded in 42 A.D.

The son of Zebedee (q.v.) and Salome (Cf. Matthew 27:56; Mark 15:40; 16:1).
Zahn asserts that Salome was the daughter of a priest. James is styled "the Greater" to distinguish him from the Apostle James "the Less," who was probably shorter of stature. We know nothing of St. James's early life. He was the brother of John, the beloved disciple, and probably the elder of the two.
His parents seem to have been people of means as appears from the following facts.
Zebedee was a fisherman of the Lake of Galilee, who probably lived in or near Bethsaida (John, i, 44), perhaps in Capharnaum; and had some boatmen or hired men as his usual attendants (Mark, i, 20).
Salome was one of the pious women who afterwards followed Christ and "ministered unto him of their substance" (cf. Matt., xxvii, 55, sq.; Mark, xv, 40; xvi, 1; Luke, viii, 2 sq.; xxiii, 55-xxiv, 1).
St. John was personally known to the high-priest (John, xviii, 16); and must have had wherewithal to provide for the Mother of Jesus (John, xix, 27).
It is probable, according to Acts 4:13, that John (and consequently his brother James) had not received the technical training of the rabbinical schools; in this sense they were unlearned and without any official position among the Jews. But, according to the social rank of their parents, they must have been men of ordinary education, in the common walks of Jewish life. They had frequent opportunity of coming in contact with Greek life and language, which were already widely spread along the shores of the Galilean Sea.
Relation of St. James to Jesus
Some authors, comparing John 19:25 with Matthew 28:56 and Mark 15:40, identify, and probably rightly so, Mary the Mother of James the Less and of Joseph in Mark and Matthew with "Mary of Cleophas" in John.
As the name of Mary Magdalen occurs in the three lists, they identify further Salome in Mark with "the mother of the sons of Zebedee" in Matthew; finally they identify Salome with "his mother's sister" in John. They suppose, for this last identification, that four women are designated by John, xix, 25; the Syriac "Peshito" gives the reading: "His mother and his mother's sister, and Mary of Cleophas and Mary Magdalen." If this last supposition is right, Salome was a sister of the Blessed Virgin Mary, and James the Greater and John were first cousins of the Lord; this may explain the discipleship of the two brothers, Salome's request and their own claim to the first position in His kingdom, and His commendation of the Blessed Virgin to her own nephew. But it is doubtful whether the Greek admits of this construction without the addition or the omission of kai (and). Thus the relationship of St. James to Jesus remains doubtful.
His life and apostolate
The Galilean origin of St. James in some degree explains the energy of temper and the vehemence of character which earned for him and St. John the name of Boanerges, "sons of thunder" (Mark 3:17); the Galilean race was religious, hardy, industrious, brave, and the strongest defender of the Jewish nation.
When John the Baptist proclaimed the kingdom of the Messias, St. John became a disciple (John 1:35); he was directed to "the Lamb of God" and afterwards brought his brother James to the Messias; the obvious meaning of John, i, 41, is that St. Andrew finds his brother (St. Peter) first and that afterwards St. John (who does not name himself, according to his habitual and characteristic reserve and silence about himself) finds his brother (St. James).
The call of St. James to the discipleship of the Messias is reported in a parallel or identical narration by Matthew 4:18-22; Mark 1:19 sq.; and Luke 5:1-11. The two sons of Zebedee, as well as Simon (Peter) and his brother Andrew with whom they were in partnership (Luke 5:10), were called by the Lord upon the Sea of Galilee, where all four with Zebedee and his hired servants were engaged in their ordinary occupation of fishing. The sons of Zebedee "forthwith left their nets and father, and followed him" (Matthew 4:22), and became "fishers of men". St. James was afterwards with the other eleven called to the Apostleship (Matt., x, 1-4; Mark, iii, 13-19; Luke, vi, 12-16; Acts, i, 13).
In all four lists the names of Peter and Andrew, James and John form the first group, a prominent and chosen group (cf. Mark, xiii, 3); especially Peter, James, and John. These three Apostles alone were admitted to be present at the miracle of the raising of Jairus's daughter (Mark, v, 37; Luke, viii, 51), at the Transfiguration (Mark, ix, 1; Matt., xvii, 1; Luke, ix, 28), and the Agony in Gethsemani (Matt., xxvi, 37; Mark, xiv, 33). The fact that the name of James occurs always (except in Luke, viii, 51; ix, 28; Acts, i, 13--Gr. Text) before that of his brother seems to imply that James was the elder of the two. It is worthy of notice that James is never mentioned in the Gospel of St. John; this author observes a humble reserve not only with regard to himself, but also about the members of his family.
Several incidents scattered through the Synoptics suggest that James and John had that particular character indicated by the name "Boanerges," sons of thunder, given to them by the Lord (Mark, iii, 17); they were burning and impetuous in their evangelical zeal and severe in temper. The two brothers showed their fiery temperament against "a certain man casting out devils" in the name of the Christ; John, answering, said: "We [James is probably meant] forbade him, because he followeth not with us" (Luke, ix, 49). When the Samaritans refused to receive Christ, James and John said: "Lord, wilt thou that we command fire to come down from heaven, and consume them?" (Luke, ix, 54; cf. v. 49).
His martyrdom
On the last journey to Jerusalem, their mother Salome came to the Lord and said to Him: "Say that these my two sons may sit, the one on thy right hand, and the other on thy left, in thy kingdom" (Matt., xx, 21). And the two brothers, still ignorant of the spiritual nature of the Messianic Kingdom, joined with their mother in this eager ambition (Mark 10:37). And on their assertion that they are willing to drink the chalice that He drinks of, and to be baptized with the baptism of His sufferings, Jesus assured them that they will share His sufferings (Mark 5:38-39).
James won the crown of martyrdom fourteen years after this prophecy, A.D. 44. Herod Agrippa I, son of Aristobulus and grandson of Herod the Great, reigned at that time as "king" over a wider dominion than that of his grandfather. His great object was to please the Jews in every way, and he showed great regard for the Mosaic Law and Jewish customs. In pursuance of this policy, on the occasion of the Passover of A.D. 44, he perpetrated cruelties upon the Church, whose rapid growth incensed the Jews. The zealous temper of James and his leading part in the Jewish Christian communities probably led Agrippa to choose him as the first victim. "He killed James, the brother of John, with the sword." (Acts 12:1-2). According to a tradition, which, as we learn from Eusebius (Hist. Eccl., II, ix, 2, 3), was received from Clement of Alexandria (in the seventh book of his lost "Hypotyposes"), the accuser who led the Apostle to judgment, moved by his confession, became himself a Christian, and they were beheaded together. As Clement testifies expressly that the account was given him "by those who were before him," this tradition has a better foundation than many other traditions and legends respecting the Apostolic labours and death of St. James, which are related in the Latin "Passio Jacobi Majoris", the Ethiopic "Acts of James", and so on.
St. James in Spain
The tradition asserting that James the Greater preached the Gospel in Spain, and that his body was translated to Compostela, claims more serious consideration.
According to this tradition St. James the Greater, having preached Christianity in Spain, returned to Judea and was put to death by order of Herod; his body was miraculously translated to Iria Flavia in the northwest of Spain, and later to Compostela, which town, especially during the Middle Ages, became one of the most famous places of pilgrimage in the world. The vow of making a pilgrimage to Compostela to honour the sepulchre of St. James is still reserved to the pope, who alone of his own or ordinary right can dispense from it. In the twelfth century was founded the Order of Knights of St. James of Compostela (see SAINT JAMES OF COMPOSTELA, ORDER OF).

With regard to the preaching of the Gospel in Spain by St. James the greater, several difficulties have been raised:
St. James suffered martyrdom A.D. 44 (Acts 12:2), and, according to the tradition of the early Church, he had not yet left Jerusalem at this time (cf. Clement of Alexandria, "Strom.", VI, Apollonius, quoted by Euseb., "Hist. Eccl." VI, xviii).
St. Paul in his Epistle to the Romans (A.D. 58) expressed the intention to visit Spain (Romans 15:24) just after he had mentioned (15:20) that he did not "build upon another man's foundation."
The argument ex silentio: although the tradition that James founded an Apostolic see in Spain was current in the year 700, no certain mention of such tradition is to be found in the genuine writings of early writers nor in the early councils; the first certain mention we find in the ninth century, in Notker, a monk of St. Gall (Martyrol., 25 July), Walafried Strabo (Poema de XII Apost.), and others.
The tradition was not unanimously admitted afterwards, while numerous scholars reject it. The Bollandists however defended it (see Acta Sanctorum, July, VI and VII, where other sources are given).

The authenticity of the sacred relic of Compostela has been questioned and is still doubted. Even if St. James the Greater did not preach the Christian religion in Spain, his body may have been brought to Compostela, and this was already the opinion of Notker. According to another tradition, the relics of the Apostle are kept in the church of St-Saturnin at Toulouse (France), but it is not improbable that such sacred relics should have been divided between two churches. A strong argument in favour of the authenticity of the sacred relics of Compostela is the Bull of Leo XIII, "Omnipotens Deus," of 1 November, 1884.
Simon Peter  Saint Peter, also known as Peter, Simon ben Jonah/BarJonah, Simon Peter, Cephas and Kepha—original name Simon or Simeon (Acts 15:14)—was one of the twelve original disciples or apostles of Jesus
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Jesus changed the name of Simon, a native of Bethsaida on the Lake of Galilee, to Peter. Jesus said, "So you are Simon the son of John?  You shall be called Cephas" (which means Peter).
The Lord was often his guest when he was in Capernaum.
After Pentecost, by command of Jesus himself, he became the visible head of the new community.

From Jerusalem he moved to Antioch, thence to Rome, where he suffered martyrdom under Nero about 67 A.D,
He is the only Apostle who has today a direct successor, the Pope.
The other apostles are instead succeeded by the college of bishops en bloc.

Saint Peter From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.
Saint Peter, also known as Peter, Simon ben Jonah/BarJonah, Simon Peter, Cephas and Kepha—original name Simon or Simeon (Acts 15:14)—was one of the twelve original disciples or apostles of Jesus. His life is prominently featured in the New Testament Gospels. A Galilean fisherman, he (with his brother Andrew) was literally "called" by Jesus to be an apostle. Above all the other disciples, Peter was assigned a leadership role by Jesus (Matt 16:18; John 21:15–16); and indeed, his supremacy within the early Church is recognized by many.

Simon Peter is considered a saint by many Christians, and the first Pope by the Roman Catholic Church and its Eastern Rites. Other Christian denominations recognize his office as Bishop of Antioch and later Bishop of Rome, but do not hold the belief that his episcopacy had primacy over other episcopates elsewhere in the world. Still others do not view Peter as having held the office of bishop or overseer, holding the view that the office of bishop was a development of later Christianity. Furthermore, many Protestants do not use the title of "saint" in reference to Peter, believing instead in the sainthood of all believers.

The Liturgy of the Hours records June 29, AD 69 as his date of death. However, the date is uncertain. Some scholars believe that he died on October 13, AD 64. He is traditionally believed to have been sentenced to death by crucifixion by the Roman authorities. According to tradition, Simon Peter was crucified upside down, and is buried in the grottoes underneath the Basilica of Saint Peter in Vatican City. He is often depicted in art as holding the keys to the kingdom of heaven (the sign of his primacy over the Church), as described in the Gospel of Matthew.

The Shiite Muslims believe Simon (Sham'oon in Arabic) was the the chosen successor of Jesus (Isa) by God.

John the Evangelist
Of Galilean origin, was in his early days a disciple of John the Baptist, as were Andrew and Philip.  With them he joined Jesus' followers and he was always specially attached to the Master.  His name, typically Hebrew, means "the Lord has given his grace." He was mending the nets on the shores of the Sea of Galilee, when Jesus called him together with his brother (cf. Matthew 4:21; Mark 1:19).

St. John Mark bishop of Byblos in Phoenicia {Lebanon}
According to the pre­1970 Roman Martyrology, he was described as the bishop of Byblos in Phoenica  modern  Lebanon. He was per­haps mentioned in the Acts of the Apostles.
 Modern scholars are of the view that he should be identified with St. Mark the Evangelist.
In the Acts he, Peter and James are described as “pillars of the Church”.  According to an old tradition, when he left Jerusalem he preached Christianity in Asia Minor and became head of the church in Ephesus.
Exiled to Patmos, he there wrote the Apocalypse (see p. 391).
He also wrote the fourth Gospel and three Letters (see p. 381).
He died at a great age at Ephesus probably in 104 A.D.
St. John the Evangelist
I. New Testament Accounts
II. The Alleged Presbyter John
III. The Later Accounts of John
IV. Feasts of St. John
V. St. John in Christian Art

John was the son of Zebedee and Salome, and the brother of James the Greater. In the Gospels the two brothers are often called after their father "the sons of Zebedee" and received from Christ the honourable title of Boanerges, i.e. "sons of thunder" (Mark, iii, 17). Originally they were fishermen and fished with their father in the Lake of Genesareth. According to the usual and entirely probable explanation they became, however, for a time disciples of John the Baptist, and were called by Christ from the circle of John's followers, together with Peter and Andrew, to become His disciples (John, i, 35-42). The first disciples returned with their new Master from the Jordan to Galilee and apparently both John and the others remained for some time with Jesus (cf. John ii, 12, 22; iv, 2, 8, 27 sqq.). Yet after the second return from Judea, John and his companions went back again to their trade of fishing until he and they were called by Christ to definitive discipleship (Matt., iv 18-22; Mark, i, 16-20). In the lists of the Apostles John has the second place (Acts, i, 13), the third (Mark, iii, 17), and the fourth (Matt., x, 3; Luke, vi, 14), yet always after James with the exception of a few passages (Luke, viii, 51; ix, 28 in the Greek text; Acts, i, 13).
From James being thus placed first, the conclusion is drawn that John was the younger of the two brothers. In any case John had a prominent position in the Apostolic body. Peter, James, and he were the only witnesses of the raising of Jairus's daughter (Mark, v, 37), of the Transfiguration (Matt., xvii, 1), and of the Agony in Gethsemani (Matt., xxvi, 37). Only he and Peter were sent into the city to make the preparation for the Last Supper (Luke, xxii, 8). At the Supper itself his place was next to Christ on Whose breast he leaned (John, xiii, 23, 25). According to the general interpretation John was also that "other disciple" who with Peter followed Christ after the arrest into the palace of the high-priest (John, xviii, 15).

John alone remained near his beloved Master at the foot of the Cross on Calvary with the Mother of Jesus and the pious women, and took the desolate Mother into his care as the last legacy of Christ (John, xix, 25-27). After the Resurrection John with Peter was the first of the disciples to hasten to the grave and he was the first to believe that Christ had truly risen (John, xx, 2-10).
When later Christ appeared at the Lake of Genesareth John was also the first of the seven disciples present who recognized his Master standing on the shore (John, xxi, 7).

The Fourth Evangelist has shown us most clearly how close the relationship was in which he always stood to his Lord and Master by the title with which he is accustomed to indicate himself without giving his name: "the disciple whom Jesus loved". After Christ's Ascension and the Descent of the Holy Spirit, John took, together with Peter, a prominent part in the founding and guidance of the Church. We see him in the company of Peter at the healing of the lame man in the Temple (Acts, iii, 1 sqq.). With Peter he is also thrown into prison (Acts, iv, 3). Again, we find him with the prince of the Apostles visiting the newly converted in Samaria (Acts, viii, 14).

We have no positive information concerning the duration of this activity in Palestine. Apparently John in common with the other Apostles remained some twelve years in this first field of labour, until the persecution of Herod Agrippa I led to the scattering of the Apostles through the various provinces of the Roman Empire (cf. Acts, xii, 1-17).
Notwithstanding the opinion to the contrary of many writers, it does not appear improbable that John then went for the first time to Asia Minor and exercised his Apostolic office in various provinces there.
In any case a Christian community was already in existence at Ephesus before Paul's first labours there (cf. "the brethren", Acts, xviii, 27, in addition to Priscilla and Aquila), and it is easy to connect a sojourn of John in these provinces with the fact that the Holy Ghost did not permit the Apostle Paul on his second missionary journey to proclaim the Gospel in Asia, Mysia, and Bithynia (Acts, xvi, 6 sq.).

There is just as little against such an acceptation in the later account in Acts of St. Paul's third missionary journey. But in any case such a sojourn by John in Asia in this first period was neither long nor uninterrupted. He returned with the other disciples to Jerusalem for the Apostolic Council (about A.D. 51).
St. Paul in opposing his enemies in Galatia names John explicitly along with Peter and James the Less as a "pillar of the Church", and refers to the recognition which his Apostolic preaching of a Gospel free from the law received from these three, the most prominent men of the old Mother-Church at Jerusalem (Gal., ii, 9).
When Paul came again to Jerusalem after the second and after the third journey (Acts, xviii, 22; xxi, 17 sq.) he seems no longer to have met John there. Some wish to draw the conclusion from this that John left Palestine between the years 52 and 55.

Of the other New-Testament writings, it is only from the three Epistles of John and the Apocalypse that anything further is learned concerning the person of the Apostle.

We may be permitted here to take as proven the unity of the author of these three writings handed down under the name of John and his identity with the Evangelist.

Both the Epistles and the Apocalypse, however, presuppose that their author John belonged to the multitude of personal eyewitnesses of the life and work of Christ (cf. especially I John, i, 1-5; iv, 14), that he had lived for a long time in Asia Minor, was thoroughly acquainted with the conditions existing in the various Christian communities there, and that he had a position of authority recognized by all Christian communities as leader of this part of the Church. Moreover, the Apocalypse tells us that its author was on the island of Patmos "for the word of God and for the testimony of Jesus", when he was honoured with the heavenly Revelation contained in the Apocalypse (Apoc., i, 9).

     The author of the Second and Third Epistles of John designates himself in the superscription of each by the name (ho presbyteros), "the ancient", "the old". Papias, Bishop of Hierapolis, also uses the same name to designate the "Presbyter John" as in addition to Aristion, his particular authority, directly after he has named the presbyters Andrew, Peter, Philip, Thomas, James, John, and Matthew (in Eusebius, "Hist. eccl.", III, xxxix, 4).

Eusebius was the first to draw, on account of these words of Papias, the distinction between a Presbyter John and the Apostle John, and this distinction was also spread in Western Europe by St. Jerome on the authority of Eusebius. The opinion of Eusebius has been frequently revived by modern writers, chiefly to support the denial of the Apostolic origin of the Fourth Gospel.

The distinction, however, has no historical basis.
First, the testimony of Eusebius in this matter is not worthy of belief. He contradicts himself, as in his "Chronicle" he expressly calls the Apostle John the teacher of Papias ("ad annum Abrah 2114"), as does Jerome also in Ep. lxxv, "Ad Theodoram", iii, and in "De viris illustribus", xviii.
   Eusebius was also influenced by his erroneous doctrinal opinions as he denied the Apostolic origin of the Apocalypse and ascribed this writing to an author differing from St. John but of the same name.
    St. Irenaeus also positively designates the Apostle and Evangelist John as the teacher of Papias, and neither he nor any other writer before Eusebius had any idea of a second John in Asia (Adv. haer., V, xxxiii, 4).
 In what Papias himself says the connection plainly shows that in this passage by the word presbyters only Apostles can be understood. If John is mentioned twice the explanation lies in the peculiar relationship in which Papias stood to this, his most eminent teacher. By inquiring of others he had learned some things indirectly from John, just as he had from the other Apostles referred to. In addition he had received information concerning the teachings and acts of Jesus directly, without the intervention of others, from the still living "Presbyter John", as he also had from Aristion.
   Thus the teaching of Papias casts absolutely no doubt upon what the New-Testament writings presuppose and expressly mention concerning the residence of the Evangelist John in Asia.

John, Son of Zebedee "The Origin of our Loftiest Spirituality"

Here is a translation of Benedict XVI's address at today's general audience, which he dedicated to the figure of John, son of Zebedee.
Dear Brothers and Sisters:
 We dedicate today's meeting to recall another very important member of the apostolic college: John, son of Zebedee, and brother of James. His name, typically Hebrew, means "the Lord has given his grace." He was mending the nets on the shores of the Sea of Galilee, when Jesus called him together with his brother (cf. Matthew 4:21; Mark 1:19).
John is always part of the restricted group that Jesus took with him on certain occasions. He is beside Peter and James when Jesus, in Capernaum, enters Peter's house to cure his mother-in-law (cf. Mark 1:29); with the other two he follows the Master into the house of the chief of the synagogue, Jarius, whose daughter would be called back to life (cf. Mark 5:37); he follows him when he goes up to the mountain to be transfigured (cf. Mark 9:2); he is by his side on the Mount of Olives when before the imposing Temple of Jerusalem he delivers the discourse on the end of the city and of the world (cf. Mark 13:3); and, finally, he is close to him when in the Garden of Gethsemane he withdraws to pray to the Father before the Passion (cf. Mark 14:33).

Shortly before Passover, when Jesus chose two disciples to prepare the room for the Supper, he entrusts this task to him and to Peter (Luke 22:8). This prominent position in the group of the Twelve makes comprehensible in a certain sense the initiative that his mother took one day: she approached Jesus to request that her two sons, John and James, might sit one at his right hand and one at his left in the Kingdom (cf. Matthew 20:20-21). As we know, Jesus replied posing a question in turn: he asked if they were prepared to drink the chalice that he himself was about to drink (cf. Matthew 20:28). With these words, he wanted to open the eyes of the two disciples, introduce them to knowledge of the mystery of his person, sketch the future call to be his witnesses to the supreme test of blood. Shortly after, in fact, Jesus clarified that he had not come to be served but to serve and to give his life as a ransom for many (cf. Matthew 20:28).

In the days following the Resurrection, we find the sons of Zebedee fishing together with Peter and others on a night without results. After the Risen One's intervention, came the miraculous catch: "the disciple whom Jesus loved" would be the first to recognize the Lord and to point him out to Peter (cf. John 21:1-13).

Within the Church of Jerusalem, John occupied an important place in the leadership of the first group of Christians. Paul, in fact, places him among those he called the "columns" of that community (cf. Galatians 2:9).    Luke, in the Acts of the Apostles, presents him next to Peter while they go to the Temple to pray (Acts 3:1-4,11) or when they appear before the Sanhedrin to witness their faith in Jesus Christ (cf. Acts 4:13,19).
Together with Peter he receives the invitation of the Church of Jerusalem to confirm those who accepted the Gospel in Samaria, praying over them so that they would receive the Holy Spirit (cf. Acts 8:14-15).

In particular, we must recall what he said, together with Peter, before the Sanhedrin, during the trial: "we cannot but speak of what we have seen and heard" (Acts 4:20). This frankness in confessing their own faith remains as an example and a warning for all of us so that we will be ready to declare with determination our unbreakable adherence to Christ, putting our faith before any human calculation or interest.

According to tradition, John is "the beloved disciple," who in the fourth Gospel places his head on the Master's breast during the Last Supper (cf. John 13:21), is found at the foot of the cross close to the Mother of Jesus (cf. John 19:25) and, finally, is witness both of the empty tomb as well as the presence of the Risen One (cf. John 20:2, 21:7).
We know that this identification today is disputed by experts, as some of them see in him the prototype of the disciple of Jesus. Leaving the exegetes to clarify the situation, we content ourselves with drawing an important lesson for our lives: the Lord wishes to make of each one of us a disciple who lives in personal friendship with him.  To do this, it is not enough to follow and listen to him exteriorly; it is also necessary to live with him and as him. This is only possible in the context of a relationship of great familiarity, penetrated by the warmth of total trust. It is what happens between friends: this is why Jesus said one day: "Greater love has no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends … No longer do I call you servants, for the servant does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for all that I have heard from my Father I have made known to you" (John 15:13,15).
In the apocryphal "Acts of John" the apostle, is not presented as founder of Churches, not even as guide of a constituted community, but as a constant itinerant, a communicator of the faith in the encounter with "souls capable of hoping and of being saved" (18:10, 23:8). He is impelled by the paradoxical desire to make the invisible seen. In fact, the Eastern Church calls him simply "the Theologian," that is, the one who is able to speak in terms accessible to divine things, revealing an arcane access to God through adherence to Jesus.

Devotion to John the Apostle was affirmed first in the city of Ephesus where, according to an ancient tradition, he lived for a long time, dying at an extraordinarily advanced age, under the emperor Trajan.
In Ephesus, emperor Justinian, in the 6th century, built a great basilica in his honor, of which there still remain impressive ruins.

Precisely in the East he enjoyed and enjoys great veneration. In the Byzantine icons he is represented as very old and in intense contemplation, with the attitude of one who invites to silence.
In fact, without proper recollection, it is not possible to approach the supreme mystery of God and his revelation. This explains why, years ago, the Ecumenical Patriarch of Constantinople, Athenagoras, whom Pope Paul VI embraced at a memorable meeting, affirmed: "John is at the origin of our loftiest spirituality. Like him, the 'silent ones' know that mysterious exchange of hearts, invoke the presence of John and their hearts are inflamed" (O. Clement, "Dialoghi con Atenagora," Turin, 1972, p. 159).

May the Lord help us to place ourselves in the school of John to learn the great lesson of love so that we feel loved by Christ "to the end" (John 13:1) and spend our lives for him.    [Translation by ZENIT]    [At the end of the audience, the Holy Father read the following summary in English:]    Dear Brothers and Sisters,    Continuing our weekly catechesis on the Church's apostolic ministry, we now consider the apostle John, the son of Zebedee and the brother of James.    Among the apostles, John appears with Peter and James as part of a smaller group which accompanies Jesus at significant moments of his public ministry. After the Resurrection, it was John who recognized the risen Lord standing on the shore and pointed him out to Peter. Saint Paul refers to him as one of the "columns" of the early Church in Jerusalem.    According to tradition, John is "the beloved disciple" mentioned in the fourth Gospel, who reclined next to the Lord at the Last Supper, stood with Mary at the foot of the cross and beheld the empty tomb. As such, he is a model for all believers, who are called to establish a deep personal friendship with Jesus. In the Eastern tradition, John is venerated as "the Theologian" for the depth of his religious and contemplative vision. By his prayers, may we more fully experience the mystery of the Father's love revealed in Christ, and respond by offering our lives ever more generously to him.    [The Pope then greeted pilgrims in several languages. In English, he said:]    My prayerful greetings go to the Sisters of the Holy Family of Nazareth assembled in Rome for their General Chapter. I also greet the members of the pilgrimage "in the footsteps of Saint Columban," and the School Sisters of Notre Dame celebrating their Silver Jubilee. Upon all the English-speaking visitors present at today's audience, especially the pilgrims from England, Ireland, Malta, New Zealand, Indonesia, Canada and the United States, I invoke God's blessings of joy and peace.    ©Copyright 2006 -- Libreria Editrice Vaticana [adapted] ZE0607050
III. THE LATER ACCOUNTS OF JOHN    Christian writers of the second and third centuries testify to us as a tradition universally recognized and doubted by no one that the Apostle and Evangelist John lived in Asia Minor in the last decades of the first century and from Ephesus had guided the Churches of that province.
  In his "Dialogue with Tryphon" (Chapter 81) St. Justin Martyr refers to "John, one of the Apostles of Christ" as a witness who had lived "with us", that is, at Ephesus.
  St. Irenæus speaks in very many places of the Apostle John and his residence in Asia and expressly declares that he wrote his Gospel at Ephesus (Adv. haer., III, i, 1), and that he had lived there until the reign of Trajan (loc. cit., II, xxii, 5). With Eusebius (Hist. eccl., III, xiii, 1) and others we are obliged to place the Apostle's banishment to Patmos in the reign of the Emperor Domitian (81-96). Previous to this, according to Tertullian's testimony (De praescript., xxxvi), John had been thrown into a cauldron of boiling oil before the Porta Latina at Rome without suffering injury.

After Domitian's death the Apostle returned to Ephesus during the reign of Trajan, and at Ephesus he died about A.D. 100 at a great age.
Tradition reports many beautiful traits of the last years of his life: that he refused to remain under the same roof with Cerinthus (Irenaeus "Ad. haer.", III, iii, 4);   his touching anxiety about a youth who had become a robber (Clemens Alex., "Quis dives salvetur", xiii); his constantly repeated words of exhortation at the end of his life, "Little children, love one another" (Jerome, "Comm. in ep. ad. Gal.", vi, 10).
On the other hand the stories told in the apocryphal Acts of John, which appeared as early as the second century, are unhistorical invention.
IV. FEASTS OF ST. JOHN   St. John is commemorated on 27 December, which he originally shared with St. James the Greater. At Rome the feast was reserved to St. John alone at an early date, though both names are found in the Carthage Calendar, the Hieronymian Martyrology, and the Gallican liturgical books. The "departure" or "assumption" of the Apostle is noted in the Menology of Constantinople and the Calendar of Naples (26 September), which seems to have been regarded as the date of his death. The feast of St. John before the Latin Gate, supposed to commemorate the dedication of the church near the Porta Latina, is first mentioned in the Sacramentary of Adrian I (772-95).
V. ST. JOHN IN CHRISTIAN ART      Early Christian art usually represents St. John with an eagle, symbolizing the heights to which he rises in the first chapter of his Gospel.
   The chalice as symbolic of St. John, which, according to some authorities, was not adopted until the thirteenth century, is sometimes interpreted with reference to the Last Supper, again as connected with the legend according to which St. John was handed a cup of poisoned wine, from which, at his blessing, the poison rose in the shape of a serpent. Perhaps the most natural explanation is to be found in the words of Christ to John and James "My chalice indeed you shall drink" (Matthew 20:23).

imon Peter his brother
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A native of Bethsaida in Galilee was a fisherman with Simon Peter his brother.  Originally a disciple of John the Baptist: it was he who brought his brother to Jesus.  After the dispersal of the Apostles he preached the Gospel in Asia Minor and in Scythia, the region between the Danube and the Don.  He went thence to Achaia (i.e. the Polopennese) where he suffered martyrdom on the cross at Patras. 

The name "Andrew" (Gr., andreia, manhood, or valour), like other Greek names, appears to have been common among the Jews from the second or third century B.C.
St. Andrew, the Apostle, son of Jonah, or John (Matt., xvi, 17; John, i, 42), was born in Bethsaida of Galilee (John, i, 44). He was brother of Simon Peter (Matt., x, 2; John, i, 40). Both were fishermen (Matt., iv, 18; Mark, i, 16), and at the beginning of Our Lord's public life occupied the same house at Capharnaum (Mark, i, 21, 29).

From the fourth Gospel we learn that Andrew was a disciple of the Baptist, whose testimony first led him and John the Evangelist to follow Jesus (John, i, 35-40). Andrew at once recognized Jesus as the Messias, and hastened to introduce Him to his brother, Peter, (John, i, 41). Thenceforth the two brothers were disciples of Christ.
On a subsequent occasion, prior to the final call to the apostolate, they were called to a closer companionship, and then they left all things to follow Jesus (Luke, v, 11; Matt., iv, 19, 20; Mark, i, 17, 18). Finally Andrew was chosen to be one of the Twelve; and in the various lists of Apostles given in the New Testament (Matt., x, 2-4); Mark, iii, 16-19; Luke, vi, 14-16; Acts, i, 13) he is always numbered among the first four. The only other explicit reference to him in the Synoptists occurs in Mark, xiii, 3, where we are told he joined with Peter, James and John in putting the question that led to Our Lord's great eschatological discourse.

In addition to this scanty information, we learn from the fourth Gospel that on the occasion of the miraculous feeding of the five thousand, it was Andrew who said: "There is a boy here who has five barley loaves and two fishes: but what are these among so many?" (John vi, 8, 9); and when, a few days before Our Lord's death, certain Greeks asked Philips that they might see Jesus, Philip referred the matter to Andrew as to one of greater authority, and then both told Christ (John, xii, 20-22).

   Like the majority of the Twelve, Andrew is not named in the Acts except in the list of the Apostles, where the order of the first four is Peter, John, James, Andrew; nor have the Epistles or the Apocalypse any mention of him.

   From what we know of the Apostles generally, we can, of course, supplement somewhat these few details. As one of the Twelve, Andrew was admitted to the closest familiarity with Our Lord during His public life; he was present at the Last Supper; beheld the risen Lord; witnessed the Ascension; shared in the graces and gifts of the first Pentecost, and helped, amid threats and persecution, to establish the Faith in Palestine.

     When the Apostles went forth to preach to the Nations, Andrew seems to have taken an important part, but unfortunately we have no certainty as to the extent or place of his labours. Eusebius (H.E. III:1), relying, apparently, upon Origen, assigns Scythia as his mission field: Andras de [eilechen] ten Skythian; while St. Gregory of Nazianzus (Or. 33) mentions Epirus; St. Jerome (Ep. ad Marcell.) Achaia; and Theodoret (on Ps. cxvi) Hellas.
Probably these various accounts are correct, for Nicephorus (H.E. II:39), relying upon early writers, states that Andrew preached in Cappadocia, Galatia, and Bithynia, then in the land of the anthropophagi and the Scythian deserts, afterwards in Byzantium itself, where he appointed St. Stachys as its first bishop, and finally in Thrace, Macedonia, Thessaly, and Achaia.
It is generally agreed that he was crucified by order of the Roman Governor, Aegeas or Aegeates, at Patrae in Achaia, and that he was bound, not nailed, to the cross, in order to prolong his sufferings. The cross on which he suffered is commonly held to have been the decussate cross, now known as St. Andrew's, though the evidence for this view seems to be no older than the fourteenth century.
His martyrdom took place during the reign of Nero, on 30 November, A.D. 60); and both the Latin and Greek Churches keep 30 November as his feast. St. Andrew's relics were translated from Patrae to Constantinople, and deposited in the church of the Apostles there, about A.D. 357. When Constantinople was taken by the French, in the beginning of the thirteenth century, Cardinal Peter of Capua brought the relics to Italy and placed them in the cathedral of Amalfi, where most of them still remain. St. Andrew is honoured as their chief patron by Russia and Scotland.

Early Saints of Rus’-Ukraine Our Apostolic Founders
The Ukrainian Orthodox Church venerates St. Andrew the First-Called as its Apostle and Founder. It was St. Andrew who visited the hills of Kyiv and blessed them and the city that was to be built on them and which was to become the Beacon of Orthodox Christianity for centuries after. St. Andrew placed a Cross on one of the hills and this is now kept as a Relic in the Church of St. Andrew in Kyiv. The familiar St. Andrew’s “X” shaped Cross is highly honoured in the Ukrainian Church and the slanted lower bar on the Orthodox Cross also refers to the St. Andrew’s Cross and identifies the Ukrainian Church as the Apostolic Church of St. Andrew. St. Andrew’s disciple, St. Titus, is also venerated alongside the Apostle.
Three early Scythian disciples of St. Andrew who accompanied him to the Kyivan area are also honoured: Sts. Ina, Pina and Rima. Yet another associate of St Andrew is a woman saint: the Virgin-Martyr Oriozela of Reuma.
Other Gothic martyrs at this time are Sts. Triphon, Parthenius and Kalohera, Basilisk of Comana and Savvas the Reader.

Another Apostolic Founder of the Ukrainian Church is Pope St. Clement I, a disciple of Sts. Peter and Paul who was banished to Crimea where he died a martyr’s death by drowning with an anchor around his neck. His symbol is the anchor and a church in his honour was under the waters of the Black Sea, but the tide always lifted for his Feast Day so that people could visit it, see his Relics and the anchor.
St. Clement wrote the Epistle of St. Clement that was formerly read in churches throughout the Roman Empire and he is said to be the scribe who helped St. Paul write the Epistle to the Hebrews.
St. Volodymyr the Great took relics of St. Clement to Kyiv and made him a Patron of Kyiv and his Royal House.
St. Volodymyr’s devotion to St. Clement is also based on Volodymyr’s Scandinavian background where Clement was Protector and Patron of Sailors. A Scandinavian parish, which continues in London, England to this day, is named for St. Clement.
Who also came from Bethsaida was a disciple of John the Baptist and one of the first to be called by Jesus.  For the period after Pentecost our only source of information is tradition, according to which he preached in Asia Minor and was possibly crucified at Ephesus at the age of about 87.
The Apostle Philip
"He Invites Us to Come and See Jesus"
VATICAN CITY, SEPT. 6, 2006 ( Here is a translation of the address Benedict XVI gave today at the general audience, held in St. Peter's Square. The Pope dedicated his talk to present the figure of the Apostle Philip. 
Dear Brothers and Sisters:  Continuing to sketch the portrait of the various apostles, as we have been doing for some weeks, we meet today with Philip.

In the lists of the Twelve he always appears in fifth place (in Matthew 10:3; Mark 3:18; Luke 6:14; Acts 1:13), that is, essentially among the first.  Although Philip was of Jewish origin, his name is Greek, as is Andrew's, which constitutes a small gesture of cultural openness that must not be underestimated. The news we have of him comes from the Gospel of John. He was from the same place as Peter and Andrew, namely, Bethsaida (cf. John 1:44), a small city that belonged to the tetrarchy of one of Herod the Great's sons, who was also called Philip (cf. Luke 3:1).
The fourth Gospel says that, after being called by Jesus, Philip meets with Nathanael and tells him: "We have found him of whom Moses in the law and also the prophets wrote, Jesus of Nazareth, the son of Joseph" (John 1:45). In face of Nathanael's rather skeptical response -- "Can anything good come out of Nazareth?" -- Philip does not give up and answers decisively: "Come and see" (John 1:46). 
With this response, dry but clear, Philip demonstrates the characteristics of the authentic witness: He is not content with presenting the announcement as a theory, but questions the interlocutor directly, suggesting that he himself have the personal experience of what was proclaimed. Jesus uses those two same verbs when two disciples of John the Baptist approach him to ask him where he lives: Jesus answers: "Come and see" (cf. John 1:38-39). 
We can think that Philip questions us with those two verbs which imply a personal participation. He also tells us what he said to Nathanael: "Come and see." The apostle commits us to know Jesus up close. In fact, friendship, to truly know the other, requires closeness, what is more, in part lives from it. In fact, we must not forget that, according to what Mark writes, Jesus chose the Twelve with the primary objective that they "be with him" (Mark 3:14), that is, that they share his life and learn directly from him not only the style of his behavior, but above all who he really was.  Only thus, participating in his life, could they know and proclaim him.

Later on, in the Letter of Paul to the Ephesians, we read that what is important is "the Christ that they learned" (4:20), that is, what is important is not only or above all to listen to his teachings, his words, but to know him personally, that is, his humanity and divinity, the mystery of his beauty.  He is not only a Teacher, but a Friend, more than that, a Brother.
How can we know him if we are far from him? Intimacy, familiarity, custom, make us discover the true identity of Jesus Christ. This is precisely what the Apostle Philip reminds us. That is why he invites us to "come" and "see," that is, to enter into a contact of listening, of response and communion of life with Jesus, day after day. 
On the occasion of the multiplication of loaves, he received from Jesus a precise request, quite surprising: Where was it possible to buy the bread needed to feed all the people who were following him (cf. John 6:5). Then, Philip answered with much realism: "Two hundred days' wages worth of food would not be enough for each of them to have a little" (John 6:7).  Here we can see the realism and practical spirit of the apostle, who was able to judge the implications of a situation. We know what happened afterward. We know that Jesus took the loaves, and after praying, distributed them. In this way, he effected the multiplication of the loaves.
It is an interesting fact that Jesus addressed Philip specifically, to have a first impression on the solution of the problem: evident sign that he formed part of the restricted group that surrounded him. 

In another instance, very important for the future history, before the Passion, some Greeks were in Jerusalem on the occasion of the Passover, they "came to Philip … and asked him, 'Sir, we would like to see Jesus.' Philip went and told Andrew; then Andrew and Philip went and told Jesus" (John 12:20-22).
Once again we are before a vestige of his particular prestige within the apostolic college. In this case, in particular, he carries out the functions of intermediary between the request of some Greeks -- he probably spoke Greek and was able to act as interpreter -- and Jesus; though he joins Andrew, the other apostle with a Greek name, in any case, the foreigners turn to him.  This teaches us also to be willing both to accept requests and invocations, wherever they come from, as well as to direct them to the Lord, as only he can satisfy them fully. It is important, in fact, to know that we are not the last recipients of the requests of those who approach us, but the Lord: We must direct to him those who are in difficulties. Each one of us must be an open path to him!

There is another highly particular opportunity in which Philip intervenes.
During the Last Supper, after Jesus affirmed that to know him also meant to know the Father (cf. John 14:7), Philip, almost naively asked him: "Master, show us the Father, and that will be enough for us" (John 14:8).  Jesus answered him in a tone of benevolent reproach: "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? […] Believe me that I am in the Father and the Father is in me" (John 14:9-11).
They are one of the most sublime words of the Gospel of John. They contain an authentic revelation. At the end of the "Prologue" of his Gospel, John affirms: " No one has ever seen God. The only Son, God, who is at the Father's side, has revealed him" (John 1:18). 

Well then, that statement, which is of the evangelist, is taken up and confirmed by Jesus himself, but with a detail.
In fact, while John's "Prologue" speaks of an explanatory intervention of Jesus through the words of his teaching, in his answer to Philip, Jesus makes reference to his own person as such, leading us to understand that he can only be understood through what he says, more than that, through what he is.
To help us understand, using the paradox of the Incarnation, we can say that God assumed a human face, that of Jesus, and consequently, from now on, if we really want to know the face of God, we have only to contemplate Jesus' face! In his face we really see who God is and how he is! 
The evangelist does not tell us if Philip understood Jesus' phrase fully. What is certain is that he handed his life over to him totally.

According to some subsequent accounts ("Acts of Philip" and others), our apostle evangelized Greece in the first instance and then Phrygia, and there he faced death, in Hieropolis, with a torture that some mention as crucifixion and others as stoning.  We wish to end our reflection recalling the objective toward which our life should be directed: to find Jesus, as Philip found him, trying to see in him God himself, the heavenly Father. If this commitment is lacking, we find ourselves alone with ourselves, as before a mirror, and we are ever more alone!
Instead, Philip invites us to let ourselves be conquered by Jesus, to be with him and to share this indispensable company. In this way, seeing, finding God, we can find true life. 

[Translation by ZENIT]  [At the end of the audience, the Holy Father greeted pilgrims in several languages. In English, he said:]  Dear Brothers and Sisters,  Continuing our catechesis on the Church's apostolic ministry, we now turn to the Apostle Philip. Philip was a native of Bethsaida, like Peter and Andrew.
 In the Gospel of John, it was Philip who told Nathanael about Jesus and then led him to the Lord with the words "Come and see!" (John 1:46).  Later, when some Greeks wished to see Jesus, they asked Philip and he immediately brought them to him (John 12:20-22).
Like every good evangelist, Philip not only spoke to others about Christ, but invited them to meet him personally.  Jesus in fact chose his apostles "to be with him" (Mark 3:14) and in this way to know him and become his friends. At the Last Supper, Philip asked: "Lord, show us the Father, and we will be satisfied," to which Jesus replied: "Whoever has seen me, has seen the Father" (John 14:9-11).

To know Jesus is to know God. In Jesus, the eternal Son, God takes on a human face. According to tradition, Philip died a martyr's death after preaching the Gospel in Greece and Phrygia. By his example and prayers, may we deepen our friendship with Jesus and joyfully invite others to "come and see" the Lord.  I warmly welcome all the English-speaking pilgrims present at this audience, including members of the Brothers of Charity services in County Cork, Ireland, and the staff and students from St. Joseph's Institute in Copenhagen. May your time in Rome deepen your love of Christ and his Church. Upon you all I invoke God's abundant blessings!   © Copyright 2006 -- Libreria Editrice Vaticana [adapted] ZE06090604

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called Didymus (the Twin) also came from Galilee.  His early disbelief in the Resurrection of Jesus is what is best remembered about him. We have very uncertain information about him. We have very uncertain information about the field of his apostolate after Pentecost.  A fairly reliable tradition assigns to him the East:  Syria, Persia and India, where he seems to have suffered martyrdom and where the oldest Christian community, the Syro-Malabar church venerates his tomb.
More on Saint Thomas here
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A tax-contractor in Capernaum was called by Jesus to be his apostle.
Jesus went beside the sea (Gennasaret); and all the crowd gathered about him, and he taught them.  And as he passed on, he saw Levi the son of Alphaeus sitting at the tax office, and he said to him, "Follow me."  And he rose and followed him.

After Pentecost he preached the Gospel to the Jews in Palestine, and wrote for them the first of the four Gospels, in Aramaic.  He also evangelized other countries, among which was probably Abyssinia.
James the Lesser
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The 'brother' (i.e. cousin) of Jesus, is named among the 'pillars of the Church' at Jerusalem, as are Peter and John.  He was later the 'Head', that is the Bishop, of the Jerusalem Church and is the author of a Letter (see page 357).  His apostolate was directed mainly towards converted Jews and he was martyred under the High Priest Hanan II in 62.
St. Alphaeus First century
The father of St. James the Less, mentioned in Matthew. His legends were popular in the early Church.
  Saint James the son of Alphaeus
"As the body apart from the spirit is dead, so faith apart from works is dead" (Jas 2:26).
Faith must be fulfilled in life, above all, in love of neighbour and especially in dedication to the poor.
Pope Benedict XVI 28 June 2006, in St. Peter's Square
Saint James the Lesser "the son of Alphaeus" (Mt 10:3; Mk 3:18; Lk 5; Acts 1:13)  He has often been identified with another James, called "the Younger" (cf. Mk 15:40)
The son of a Mary (cf. ibid.), possibly "Mary the wife of Clopas", who stood, according to the Fourth Gospel, at the foot of the Cross with the Mother of Jesus (cf. Jn 19:25).
He also came from Nazareth and was probably related to Jesus (cf. Mt 13:55; Mk 6:3); according to Semitic custom he is called "brother" (Mk 6:3; Gal 1:19).

At the Council of Jerusalem and through the New Testament Letter that bears his name, the Apostle James shows that faith and works are key.
St. Paul, who attributes a specific appearance of the Risen One to James (cf. 1 Cor 17:7), even named James before Cephas-Peter on the occasion of his visit to Jerusalem,
describing him as a "pillar" of that Church on a par with Peter (cf. Gal 2:9).
The Letter that bears the name of James is also attributed to him and is included in the New Testament canon. In it, he is not presented as "brother of the Lord" but as "servant of God and of the Lord Jesus Christ (Jas 1:1).

At the General Audience on Wednesday, 28 June 2006, in St. Peter's Square, continuing his Catecheses on the Church's apostolic ministry, the Holy Father commented on St. James, "the son of Alphaeus" but often identified as "James the Lesser" and "James, the brother of the Lord" {according to Semitic custom he is called "brother" (Mk 6:3; Gal 1:19).}.
The following is a translation of the Pope's Catechesis, given in Italian.

"Dear Brothers and Sisters,
"Beside the figure of James the Greater, son of Zebedee, of whom we spoke last Wednesday, another James appears in the Gospels, known as "the Lesser". He is also included in the list of the Twelve Apostles personally chosen by Jesus and is always specified as "the son of Alphaeus" (Mt 10:3; Mk 3:18; Lk 5; Acts 1:13).

He has often been identified with another James, called "the Younger" (cf. Mk 15:40), the son of a Mary (cf. ibid.), possibly "Mary the wife of Clopas", who stood, according to the Fourth Gospel, at the foot of the Cross with the Mother of Jesus (cf. Jn 19:25).

He also came from Nazareth and was probably related to Jesus (cf. Mt 13:55; Mk 6:3); according to Semitic custom he is called "brother" (Mk 6:3; Gal 1:19).

The book of the Acts of the Apostles emphasizes the prominent role that this latter James played in the Church of Jerusalem. At the Apostolic Council celebrated there after the death of James the Greater he declared, together with the others, that pagans could be received into the Church without first submitting to circumcision (cf. Acts 15:13). St. Paul, who attributes a specific appearance of the Risen One to James (cf. 1 Cor 17:7), even named James before Cephas-Peter on the occasion of his visit to Jerusalem, describing him as a "pillar" of that Church on a par with Peter (cf. Gal 2:9).

Subsequently, Judeo-Christians considered him their main reference point. The Letter that bears the name of James is also attributed to him and is included in the New Testament canon. In it, he is not presented as a "brother of the Lord" but as a "servant of God and of the Lord Jesus Christ (Jas 1:1)."

Simon the Canaanite or the Zealot {he had zeal for the Jewish law,}.

About him we know very little, but he is often coupled with Judas Thaddaeus in the Liturgy.  For the time after Pentecost, tradition is very confused and uncertain about where he exercised his apostolate.  He may be the same Simon, related to Jesus, who presided over the church in Jerusalem after James the Less.

Simon ( the Zealot ) was believed to have preached the Gospel throughout North Africa, from Egypt to Mauritania, and even into Britain. There is a church tradition which says that he was crucified by the Romans in Caistor, Lincolnshire, Britain and subsequently buried there on May 10, circa 61 A.D.  This cannot be confirmed, however, as there is also a strong tradition which says, that having left Britain, Simon, at some point , went to Persia and was martyred there by being sawn in two. 
Judas Thaddaeus Brother of James the Less
is not often mentioned.  He is the author of the Letter of Jude among the New Testament writings, He seems to have preached the Gospel in Palestine and the neighboring regions and finally to have suffered martyrdom near the present Beirut.
Matthias apostle in the place of Judas the traitor
Was a disciple of the Lord and, after the Ascension, was chosen by the Eleven to be an apostle in the place of Judas the traitor (see page 51). He preached the Gospel in Palestine and then went to Abyssinia.  According to another ancient tradition he suffered martyrdom by stoning, in Palestine itself.

Bartholomew  Nathanael {The name (Bartholomaios) means "son of Talmai" (or Tholmai) which was an ancient Hebrew name, borne, e.g. by the King of Gessur whose daughter was a wife of David (2 Samuel 3:3). It shows, at least, that Bartholomew was of Hebrew descent; it may have been his genuine proper name or simply added to distinguish him as the son of Talmai. Outside the instances referred to, no other mention of the name occurs in the New Testament.)

We find his name only in the lists of Apostles in the Gospels and the Acts.  He was a native of Cana in Galilee and in St John's Gospel he is called Nathanael. The day after John the Baptist said to Andrew and Philip, "Behold the Lamb of God", Philip found Nathanael and said to him, "We have found him of whom Moses in the law and also the prophets wrote, Jesus of Nazareth, the son of Joseph."
Nathanael said to him, "Can anything good come out of Nazareth?"
Philip said to him, "Come and See."
Jesus saw Nathanael coming to him and said of him, "Behold, an Israelite indeed, in whom is no guile!"

Nathanael said to Jesus, "How do you know me?"
Jesus answered, "Before Philip called you, when you under the fig tree, I saw you."
Nathanael answered him, "Rabbi, you are the Son of God! You are the King of Israel!"
Jesus answered him, "Because I said to you, I saw you under the fig tree, do you believe?  You shall see greater things than these."
And he said to him, "Truly, truly, I say to you, you will see heaven opened, and the angels of God ascending and descending upon the Son of Man."

After Pentecost tradition says that he made very long missionary journeys and was martyred in Armenia.
No mention of St. Bartholomew occurs in ecclesiastical literature before Eusebius, who mentions that Pantaenus, the master of Origen, while evangelizing India, was told that the Apostle had preached there before him and had given to his converts the Gospel of St. Matthew written in Hebrew, which was still treasured by the Church.

"India" was a name covering a very wide area, including even Arabia Felix.

Other traditions represent St. Bartholomew as preaching in Mesopotamia, Persia, Egypt, Armenia, Lycaonia, Phrygia, and on the shores of the Black Sea; one legend, it is interesting to note, identifies him with
Nathaniel. The manner of his death, said to have occurred at Albanopolis in Armenia, is equally uncertain; according to some, he was beheaded, according to others, flayed alive and crucified, head downward, by order of Astyages, for having converted his brother, Polymius, King of Armenia. On account of this latter legend, he is often represented in art (e.g. in Michelangelo's Last Judgment) as flayed and holding in his hand his own skin. His relics are thought by some to be preserved in the church of St. Bartholomew-in-the-Island, at Rome. His feast is celebrated on 24 August. An apocryphal gospel of Bartholomew existed in the early ages.
Bartholomew is listed among the Twelve Apostles in the three Synoptic gospels: Matthew, Mark, and Luke. He also appears as one of the witnesses of the Ascension (Acts 1:4, 12, 13).

[edit] Nathanael

Bartholomew is generally supposed to have been the same person as Nathanael. In the Synoptic gospels, Philip and Bartholomew are always mentioned together, while Nathanael is never mentioned; in the gospel of John, on the other hand, Philip and Nathanael are similarly mentioned together, but nothing is said of Bartholomew.

In the Gospel of John (John 1:45-51), Nathanael is introduced as a friend of Philip. He is described as initially being skeptical about the Messiah coming from Nazareth, saying: "Can anything good come out of Nazareth?", but nonetheless, follows Philip's invitation. Jesus immediately characterizes him as "an Israelite indeed, in whom is no deceit".
Some scholars hold that Jesus' quote "Before Philip called you, when you were under the fig tree, I saw you", is based on Jewish figure of speech referring studying the Torah.
Nathanael recognizes Jesus as "the Son of God" and "the King of Israel".
Nathanael reappears at the end of John's gospel (John 21:2) as one of the disciples to whom Jesus appeared at the Sea of Tiberias after the resurrection. 

According to Syrian tradition, Bartholomew's original name was Jesus, which caused him to adopt another name.
Tradition has it that after the ascension, Bartholomew went on a missionary tour to India, where he left behind a copy of the Gospel of Matthew.
Along with his fellow Apostle Jude, Bartholomew is reputed to have brought Christianity to Armenia in the 1st century. Thus both saints are considered the patron saints of the Armenian Apostolic Church.

After his martyrdom in this country, his body is said to have been washed to Lipari. Lipari is a small island off the coast of Sicily. It is the largest of the seven Aeolian Islands. Holy Roman Emperor Otto II brought him to Rome in 983. Some of his skull was transferred to Frankfurt, while an arm is venerated in the Canterbury Cathedral today. A large piece of his skin and many bones are also kept in The Cathedral of St. Bartholomew The Apostle in Lipari, Italy.

Holy Miracles
Of the many miracles preformed by St. Bartholomew before and after his death, two very popular ones are known by the town-folk of the small island of Lipari. When St. Bartholomew's body was found off the shore, the Bishop of St. Christopher's Church of Lipari ordered many men to get the body. When this failed due to its extreme weight, the Bishop then sent out the children. The children easily brought the body ashore even though the older men couldn't.

Ever since his discovery on the island, the people of Lipari celebrated his feast day annually. The tradtion of the people was to take the solid silver and gold statue from inside the Cathedral of St. Bartholomew and carry it through the town. When taking the statue down the hill towards the town, it suddenly got very heavy and had to be set down. When the men carrying the statue regained their strength they lifted it a second time. After another few seconds, it got even heavier. They set it down and attempted once more to pick it up. They managed to lift it but had to put it down one last time. Within seconds, the walls further downhill collapsed. If the statue had been able to be lifted, all of the townspeople would have been killed.

At some point in the statue's history (above), there were many invasions of the island. One time it was invaded, the king of the invading country discovered the statue and order it be taken to be melted down. The statue was taken to the kingdom and weighed. It was found to weigh only two ounces and was thought to be hollow. It was returned to its place in the Cathedral in Lipari. In reality, the statue weighs several tons and it is considered a miracle that it was not melted down.
St. Bartholomew is credited with many other miracles to do with the weight of objects.
Martyrdom of the Holy and Glorious Apostle Bartholomew

Historians declare that India is divided into three parts; and the first is said to end at Ethiopia, and the second at Media, and the third completes the country; and the one portion of it ends in the dark, and the other in the ocean. To this India, then, the holy Bartholomew the apostle of Christ went, and took up his quarters in the temple of Astaruth, and lived there as one of the pilgrims and the poor. In this temple, then, there was an idol called Astaruth, which was supposed to heal the infirm, but rather the more injured all. And the people were in entire ignorance of the true God; and from want of knowledge, but rather from the difficulty of going to any other, they all fled for refuge to the false god. And he brought upon them troubles, infirmities, damage, violence, and much affliction; and when any one sacrificed to him, the demon, retiring, appeared to give a cure to the person in trouble; and the foolish people, seeing this, believed in him. But the demons retired, not because they wished to cure men, but that they might the more assail them, and rather have them altogether in their power; and thinking that they were cured bodily, those that sacrificed to them were the more diseased in soul.

And it came to pass, that while the holy apostle of Christ, Bartholomew, stayed there, Astaruth gave no response, and was not able for curing. And when the temple was full of sick persons, who sacrificed to him daily, Astaruth could give no response; and sick persons who had come from far countries were lying there. When, therefore, in that temple not even one of the idols was able to give a response, and was of benefit neither to those that sacrificed to them nor to those who were in the agonies of death on their account, they were compelled to go to another city, where there was a temple of idols, where their great and most eminent god was called Becher.1 And having there sacrificed, they demanded, asking why their god Astaruth had not responded to them. And the demon Becher answered and said to them: From the day and hour that the true God, who dwelleth in the heavens, sent his apostle Bartholomew into the regions here, your god Astaruth is held fast by chains of fire, and can no longer either speak or breathe. They said to him: And who is this Bartholomew? He answered: He is the friend of the Almighty God, and has just come into these parts, that he may take away all the worship of the idols in the name of his God. And the servants of the Greeks said to him: Tell us what he is like, that we may be able to find him.

And the demon answered and said: He has black hair, a shaggy head, a fair skin,2 large eyes, beautiful nostrils, his ears hidden by the hair of his head, with a yellow beard, a few grey hairs, of middle height, and neither tall nor stunted, but middling, clothed with a white undercloak bordered with purple, and upon his shoulders a very white cloak; and his clothes have been worn twenty-six years, but neither are they dirty, nor have they waxed old. Seven times3 a day he bends the knee to the Lord, and seven times4 a night does he pray to God. His voice is like the sonnet of a strong trumpet; there go along with him angels of God, who allow him neither to be weary, nor to hunger, nor to thirst; his face, and his soul, and his heart are always glad and rejoicing; he foresees everything, he knows and speaks every tongue of every nation. And behold now, as soon as you ask me, and I answer you about him, behold, he knows; for the angels of the Lord tell him; and if you wish to seek him, if he is willing he will appear to you; but if he shall not be willing, you will not be able to find him. I entreat you, therefore, if you shall find him, entreat him not to come here, lest his angels do to me as they have done to my brother Astaruth.

And when the demon had said this, he held his peace. And they returned, and set to work to look into every face of the pilgrims and poor men, and for two days they could find him nowhere. And it came to pass, that one who was a demoniac set to work to cry out: Apostle of the Lord, Bartholomew, thy prayers are burning me up. Then said the apostle to him: Hold thy peace, and come out of him. And that very hour, the man who had suffered from the demon for many years was set free.

And Polymius, the king of that country, happened to be standing opposite the apostle; and he had a daughter a demoniac, that is to say, a lunatic. And he heard about the demoniac that had been healed, and sent messengers to the apostle, saying: My daughter is grievously torn; I implore thee, therefore, as thou hast delivered him5 who suffered for many years, so also to order my daughter to be set free. And the apostle rose up, and went with them. And he sees the king's daughter bound with chains, for she used to tear in pieces all her limbs; and if any one came near her, she used to bite, and no one dared to come near her. The servants say to him: And who is it that dares to touch her? The apostle answered them: Loose her, and let her go. They say to him again: We have her in our power when she is bound with all our force, and dost thou bid us loose her? The apostle says to them: Behold, I keep her enemy bound, and are you even now afraid of her? Go and loose her; and when she has partaken of food, let her rest, and early to-morrow bring her to me. And they went and did as the apostle had commanded them; and thereafter the demon was not able to come near her.

Then the king loaded camels with gold and silver, precious stones, pearls, and clothing, and sought to see the apostle; and having made many efforts, and not found him, he brought everything back to his palace.

And it happened, when the night had passed, and the following day was dawning, the sun having risen, the apostle appeared alone with the king in his bed-chamber, and said to him: Why didst thou seek me yesterday the whole day with gold and silver, and precious stones, pearls, and raiment? For these gifts those persons long for who seek earthly things; but I seek nothing earthly, nothing carnal. Wherefore I wish to teach thee that the Son of God deigned to be born as a man out of a virgin's womb. He was conceived in the womb of the virgin; He took to Himself her who was always a virgin, having within herself Him who made the heaven and the earth, the sea, and all that therein is. He, born of a virgin, like mankind, took to Himself a beginning in time, He who has a beginning neither of times nor days; but He Himself made every beginning, and everything created, whether in things visible or invisible. And as this virgin did not know man, so she, preserving her virginity, vowed a vow6 to the Lord God. And she was the first who did so. For, from the time that man existed from the beginning of the world, no woman made a vow of this mode of life; but she, as she was the first among women who loved this in her heart, said, I offer to Thee, O Lord, my virginity. And, as I have said to thee, none of mankind dared to speak this word; but she being called for the salvation of many, observed this-that she might remain a virgin through the love of God, pure and undefiled. And suddenly, when she was shut up in her chamber, the archangel Gabriel appeared, gleaming like the sun; and when she was terrified at the sight, the angel said to her, Fear not, Mary; for thou hast found favour in the sight of the Lord, and thou shall conceive. And she cast off fear, and stood up, and said, How shall this be to me, since I know not man? The angel answered her, The Holy Ghost shall come upon thee, and the power of the Most High shall overshadow thee; wherefore also that holy thing which is born of thee shall be called Son of God.7 Thus, therefore, when the angel had departed from her, she escaped the temptation of the devil, who deceived the first man when at rest. For, having tasted of the tree of disobedience, when the woman said to him, Eat, he ate; and thus the first man was cast out of paradise, and banished to this life. From him have been horn the whole human race. Then the Son of God having been born of the virgin, and having become perfect man, and having been baptized, and after His baptism having fasted forty days, the tempter came and said to Him: If thou art the Son of God, tell these stones to become loaves. And He answered: Not on bread alone shall man live, but by every word of God.8 Thus therefore the devil, who through eating bad conquered the first man, was conquered through the fasting of the second man; and as he through want of self-restraint had conquered the first man, the son of the virgin earth, so we shall conquer through the fasting of the second Adam, the Son of the Virgin Mary.

The king says to him: And how is it that thou saidst just now that she was the first virgin of whom was born God and man?
And the apostle answered: I give thanks to the Lord that thou hearest me gladly. The first man, then, was called Adam; he was formed out of the earth. And the earth, his mother out of which he was, was virgin, because it had neither been polluted by the blood of man nor opened for the burial of any one. The earth, then, was like the virgin, in order that he who conquered the son of the virgin earth might be conquered by the Son of the Virgin Mary. And, behold, he did conquer; for his wicked craft, through the eating of the tree by which man, being deceived, came forth from paradise, kept paradise shut. Thereafter this Son of the virgin conquered all the craft of the devil. And his craft was such, that when he saw the Son of the virgin fasting forty days, he knew in truth that He was the true God. The true God and man, therefore, hath not given Himself out to be known, except to those who are pure in heart,9 and who serve Him by good works. The devil himself, therefore, when he saw that after the forty days He was again hungry, was deceived into thinking that He was not God, and said to Him, Why hast thou been hungry? tell these stones to become loaves, and eat. And the Lord answered him, Listen, devil; although thou mayst lord it over man, because he has not kept the commandment of God. I have fulfilled the righteousness of God in having fasted, and shall destroy thy power, so that thou shalt no longer lord it over man. And when he saw himself conquered, he again takes Jesus to an exceeding high mountain, and shows Him all the kingdoms of the world, and says, All these will I give thee, if thou wilt fall down and worship me. The Lord says to him, Get thee behind me, Satan; for it is written, Thou shall worship the Lord thy God, and Him only shall thou serve. And there was a third temptation for the Lord; for he takes Him up to the pinnacle of the temple, and says, If thou art the Son of God, cast thyself down. The Lord says to him, Thou shall not tempt the Lord thy God. And the devil disappeared. And he indeed that once conquered Adam, the son of the virgin earth, was thrice conquered by Christ, the Son of the Virgin Mary.

And when the Lord had conquered the tyrant, He sent His apostles into all the world, that He might redeem His people from the deception of the devil; and one of these I am, an apostle of Christ. On this account we seek not after gold and silver, but rather despise them, because we labour to be rich in that place where the kingdom of Him alone endureth10 for ever, where neither trouble, nor grief, nor groaning, nor death, has place; where there is eternal blessedness, and ineffable joy, and everlasting exultation, and perpetual repose. Wherefore also the demon sitting in your temple, who makes responses to you, is kept in chains through the angel of the Lord who has sent me. Because if thou shall be baptized, and wishest thyself to be enlightened, I will make thee behold Him, and learn from how great evils thou hast been redeemed. At the same time hear also by what means he injures all those who are lying sick in the temple. The devil himself by his own art causes the men to be sick, and again to be healed, in order that they may the more believe in the idols, and in order that he may have place the more in their souls, in order that they may say to the stock and the stone, Thou art our God.11 But that demon who dwells in the idol is held in subjection, conquered by me, and is able to give no response to those who sacrifice and pray there. And if thou wishest to prove that it is so, I order him to return into the idol, and I will make him confess with his own mouth that he is bound, and able to give no response.

The king says to him: To-morrow, at the first hour of the day, the priests are ready to sacrifice in the temple, and I shall come there, and shall be able to see this wonderful work.

And it came to pass on the following day, as they were sacrificing, the devil began to cry out: Refrain, ye wretched ones, from sacrificing to me, lest ye suffer worse for my sake; because I am bound in fiery chains, and kept in subjection by an angel of the Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of God, whom the Jews crucified: for, being afraid of him, they condemned him to death. And he put to death Death himself, our king, and he bound our prince in chains of fire; and on the third day, having conquered death and the devil, rose in glory, and gave the sign of the cross to his apostles, and sent them out into the four quarters of the world; and one of them is here just now, who has bound me, and keeps me in subjection. I implore you, therefore, supplicate him on my account, that he may set me free to go into other habitations.

Then the apostle answered:
Confess, unclean demon, who is it that has injured all those that are lying here from heavy diseases? The demon answered: The devil, our ruler, he who is bound, he sends us against men, that, having first injured their bodies, we may thus also make an assault upon their souls when they sacrifice to us. Fort then we have complete power over them, when they believe in us and sacrifice to us. And when, on account of the mischief done to them, we retire, we appear curing them, and are worshipped by them as gods; but in truth we are demons, and the servants of him who was crucified, the Son of the virgin, have bound us. For from that day on which the Apostle Bartholomew came I am punished, kept hound in chains of fire. And for this reason I speak, because he has commanded me. At the same time, I dare not utter more when the apostle is present, neither I nor our rulers.

The apostle says to him:
Why dost thou not save all that have come to thee?
The demon says to him: When we injure their bodies, unless we first injure their souls, we do not let their bodies go.
The apostle says to him: And how do you injure their souls?
The demon answered him: When they believe that we are gods, and sacrifice to us, God withdraws from those who sacrifice, and we do not take away the sufferings of their bodies, but retire into their souls.

Then the apostle says to the people: Behold, the god whom you thought to cure you, does the more mischief to your souls and bodies. Hear even now your Maker who dwells in the heavens, and do not believe in lifeless stones and stocks. And if you wish that I should pray for you, and that all these may receive health, take down this idol, and break it to pieces; and when you have done this, I will sanctify this temple in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ; and having baptized all of you who are in it in the baptism of the Lord, and sanctified you, I will save all.

Then the king gave orders, and all the people brought ropes and crowbars, and were not at all aide to take down the idol.
Then the apostle says to them: Unfasten the ropes. And when they had unfastened them, he said to the demon dwelling in it: In the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, come out of this idol, and go into a desert place, where neither winged creature utters a cry, nor voice of man has ever been heard.
And straightway he arose at the word of the apostle, and lifted it up from its foundations; and in that same hour all the idols that were in that place were broken to pieces.

Then all cried out with one voice, saying: He alone is God Almighty whom Bartholomew the apostle proclaims. Then the holy Bartholomew, having spread forth his hands to heaven, said:
God of Abraham, God of Isaac, God of Jacob, who for the salvation of men hast sent forth Thine only begotten Son, our Lord Jesus Christ, in order that He might redeem by His own blood all of us enslaved by sin, and declare us to be Thy sons, that we may know Thee, the true God, that Thou existest always to eternity God without end: one God, the Father, acknowledged in Son and Holy Spirit; one God, the Son, glorified in Father and Holy Spirit; one God, the Holy Spirit, worshipped in Father and Son; and acknowledged to be truly one,12 the Father unbegotten, the Son begotten, the Holy Spirit proceeding; and in Thee the Father, and in the Holy Spirit, Thine only begotten Son our Lord Jesus Christ is, in whose name Thou hast given us power to heal the sick, to cure paralytics, to expel demons, and raise the dead: for He said to us, Verily I say unto you, that whatever ye shall ask in my name ye shall receive.13 I entreat, then, that in His name all this multitude may be saved, that all may know that Thou alone art God in heaven, and in the earth, and in the sea, who seekest the salvation of men through that same Jesus Christ our Lord, with whom Thou livest and reignest in unity of the Holy Spirit for ever and ever.

And when all responded to the Amen, suddenly there appeared an angel of the Lord, shining brighter than the sun, winged, and other four angels holding up the four corners of the temple; and with his finger the one sealed the temple and the people, and said: Thus saith the Lord who hath sent me, As you have all been purified from all your infirmity, so also this temple shall be purified from all uncleanness, and from the demons dwelling in it, whom the apostle of God has ordered to go into a desert place; for so hath God commanded me, that I may manifest Him to you. And when ye behold Him, fear nothing; but when I make the sign of the cross, so also do ye with your finger seal your faces, and these evil things will flee from you. Then he showed them the demon who dwelt in the temple, like an Ethiopian, black as soot; his face sharp like a dog's, thin-cheeked, with hair down to his feet, eves like fire, sparks coming out of his mouth; and out of his nostrils came forth smoke like sulphur, with wings spined like a porcupine; and his hands were bound with fiery chains, and he was firmly kept in. And the angel of the Lord said to him: As also the apostle hath commanded, I let thee go; go where voice of man is not heard, and be there until the great day of judgment. And when he let him go, he flew away, groaning and weeping, and disappeared. And the angel of the Lord went up into heaven in the sight of all.

Then the king, and also the queen, with their two sons, and with all his people, and with all the multitude of the city, and every city round about, and country, and whatever land his kingdom ruled over, were saved, and believed, and were baptized in the name of the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Spirit. And the king laid aside his diadem, and followed Bartholomew the apostle of Christ.

And after these things the unbelievers of the Greeks, having come together to Astreges14 the king, who was the eider brother of the king who had been baptized, say to him:
O king, thy brother Polymius has become disciple to a certain magician, who has taken down our temples, and broken our gods to pieces. And while they were thus speaking and weeping, behold, again there came also some others from the cities round about, both priests15 and people; and they set about weeping and making accusations16 before the king. Then King Astreges in a rage sent a thousand armed men along with those priests, in order that, wherever they should find the apostle, they might bring him to him bound. And when they bad done so, and found him, and brought him, he says to him:
Art thou he who has perverted my brother from the gods? To whom the apostle answered: I have not perverted him, but have converted him to God. The king says to him:
Art thou he who caused our gods to be broken in pieces?
The apostle says to him: I gave power to the demons who were in them, and they broke in pieces the dumb and senseless idols, that all men might believe in God Almighty, who dwelleth in the heavens. The king says to him:
As thou hast made my brother deny his gods, and believe in thy God, so I also will make you reject thy God and believe in my gods. The apostle says to him:
If I have bound and kept in subjection the god which thy brother worshipped, and at my order the idols were broken in pieces, if thou also art able to do the same to my God, thou canst persuade me also to sacrifice to thy gods; but if thou canst do nothing to my God, I will break all thy gods in pieces; but do thou believe in my God.

And when he had thus spoken, the king was informed that this god Baldad17 and all the other idols had fallen down, and were broken in pieces.
Then the king rent the purple in which he was clothed, and ordered the holy apostle Bartholomew to be beaten with rods; and after having been thus scourged, to be beheaded.
And innumerable multitudes came from all the cities, to the number of twelve thousand, who had believed in him along with the king; and they took up the remains of the apostle with singing of praise and with all glory, and they laid them in the royal tomb, and glorified God. And the king Astreges having heard of this, ordered him to be thrown into the sea; and his remains were carried into the island of Liparis.

And it came to pass on the thirtieth day after the apostle was carried away, that the king Astreges was overpowered by a demon and miserably strangled; and all the priests were strangled by demons, and perished on account of their rising against18 the apostle, and thus died by an evil fate.

And there was great fear and trembling, and all came to the Lord, and were baptized by the presbyters who had been ordained by the holy apostle Bartholomew. And according to the commandment of the apostle, all the clergy of the people made King Polymius bishop; and in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ he received the grace of healing, and began to do signs. And he remained in the bishopric twenty years; and having prospered in all things, and governed the church well, and guided it in right opinions,19 he fell asleep in peace, and went to the Lord: to whom be glory and strength for ever and ever. Amen.

 St. Bartholomew's India Connection - Bombay-Mangalore Legends of St. Bartholomew (August 24) Connecting Bombay and Mangalore in India
Thursday, August 24, 2006 By Jesuvera
If the legends on St. Bartholomew about India are to be believed, then we have received the Good News not from one but two of our Lord's Apostles.
According to one tradition, the Apostle Bartholomew (Barthemew) came to India in AD 55 and preached the Gospel in the area near Kalyan (now covered by Bombay Archdiocese) and was martyred in AD 62.
No mention of St. Bartholomew occurs in ecclesiastical literature before Eusebius, who mentions that Pantaenus, the master of Origen, while evangelizing India, was told that the Apostle had preached there before him and had given to his converts the Gospel of St. Matthew written in Hebrew, which was still treasured by the Church. "India" was a name covering a very wide area, including even Arabia Felix. Other traditions represent St. Bartholomew as preaching in Mesopotamia, Persia, Egypt, Armenia, Lycaonia, Phrygia, and on the shores of the Black Sea and the manner of his death, said to have occurred at Albanopolis in Armenia, is equally uncertain as accounts vary between beheading, flaying alive and crucifixion head downward by order of Astyages, for having converted his brother, Polymius, King of Armenia. His relics are thought by some to be preserved in the church of St. Bartholomew-in-the-Island, at Rome.

A second reference of Jerome says: "Pantaenus, on account of the rumor of his excellent learning, was sent by Demetrius into India, that he might preach Christ among the Brahmins and philosophers of that nation". The mention of Brahmins certainly settles the place as India. The area of his work is thought to be in Konkan in Maharastra.

Kalyanpur-Barkur Claims
Kalyanpur (Indian English or 'Calianpur' in British India English) is a village situated in the Tulunad region, presently a part of the state of Karnataka coming under Mangalore Diocese. Measuring along the present roads, the town of Barkur is less than 10kms away, with both Barkur and Kalyanpur falling within a radius of 5kms from Brahmavar, another Town which either of these places may be twinned with.
Research Historian Mascarenhas (M.A.,Ph.D.,D.D., Goa) in 'Konkanachem Christaunponn'-1929 - [Apostolic Christianity in Konkan] seems to say that Barkur owes its name to the Apostle:
"In Tulunadu, in South Kanara, there is Kallianpur. Here Bartholomew, then popularly known as Bhethal, preached the Gospel... There are many names and places, words and usages in the coastal Konkan region going up to Bombay and beyond which have originated from his name Bhethal and his preaching and that Barkur which is close to Kallianpur sprung after his name Bartholomew i.e. Bar+Thulami+Ooru and so BARKURU"

Wikipedia connects the Bartholomew legends associated with Kalyan in Maharashtra and Kalyanpur in Mangalore another ancient Indian Christian tradition that says that "the Apostle Bartholomeo (or Nathaniel) was reportedly murdered by Hindus in a port city called Kalyan or Kalyanpur in South Asia, just as the Apostle Thomas was murdered by Hindus near Mylapore, near modern Madras or Chennai."

In other words, "Both, the city of Kalyan (British India English "Calian") and the village of Kalyanpur, were at one time port cities, and both vie for the honor of being St. Bartholomeo's place of martyrdom."

Barkur, allegedly derived from the Apostle's name, is a politically famous historic port-town, located 3 kms from Brahmavar and had one (Rosario Church) of the 27 (29) original churches of Tulunadu, which was razed to the ground by Tipu Sultan in the 1780s when he set out to eradicate Christianity. The town also had one of Tipu's palaces.
In their work, "The land called South Kanara" (2000, Image flex Publishers), William Pais and Vincent Mendonca add more background to the Kalyanpur-Barkur claims:

"Christianity has been long established in South Kanara and its adherents are more numerous here, than any other district of India. It is certain that, foreign Christian merchants were visiting the coastal town of Kanara and during that period of commerce some priests also might have accompanied them for evangelical work. According to tradition Kanara had its first missionary the Apostle St. Barthelomew, who landed on the shores of river Swarna at Colombianor Colombo village an ancient maritime port adjacent to Kallianpur, stayed there to preach. He was popularly called Bethel and so the origin of the place Barkur..."
The 1981 Milagrian Charles E.G.Lewis has this to say:
"It can be said that it was the knowledge of that early Christianity in Kallianpur that prompted and urged the Portuguese Hierarchy to establish again the Church in Kallianpur when it did in 1678, or they must have found clues or traces of it when they arrived here. The Church at Kallianpur which was rebuilt in 1806, by the Goan priests and which later was demolished in 1940, had icons of St. Thomas the Apostle and that of St. Bartholomew on its façade on either side of the main entrance evidently because of the tradition of St. Bartholomew in the place's. Msgr. Denis Jeromme D'Souza who built the present Church saw to it that the tradition was carried forward. In the main body of the Church where the twelve Apostles of Christ are honoured with their statues all round the walls that of St. Bartholomew is prominently placed at the head of the apostles, nearest to the sanctuary. Opposite to him is St. Paul the apostle of Gentiles and by his side is placed St.Thomas the Apostle of India. These realities speak volumes of un-written tradition"
To help the Barkur claimes, it may be noted that the same Msg. Denis Jeromme D'Souza built the present gothic style Church of Barkur, dedicated to St. Peter where the statue of St. Bartholomew occupies a prominent place among the statues of twelve Apostles placed in the main altar.
Since most of these claims are based on oral traditions it may be disputed. However it is the same case with much of India's historical legends. The future work of scholars may throw more light on the matter but even without it, the Apostle whose eyes have seen God's Son, whose ears have heard the Eternal Word speak and whose hands have touched the Bread of Life merits our devotion, and message our credence.
St. Bartholomew, Pray for us!
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Paul of Tarsus received his call from Jesus
Called the 'Apostle of the Gentiles' because of his tireless and very extensive missionary activity.  He did not know the Lord Jesus personally and it seems that this may be the reason why St Luke in the Acts never gives him the title 'Apostle' which reserves to the Twelve.
Paul makes good his claim to this title since he received his call from Jesus himself when the latter appeared to him on the Damascus road (see no. 24).
In the following pages we shall relate the outstanding events{Acts} of his life.

St Paul wrote fourteen Letters to the first churches, which he himself founded, and wrote them for particular reasons: they were generally answers to queries of a spiritual or practical nature.  The letters to the Romans and to the Hebrews, whose contents are specifically doctrinal, are exceptions to this rule.  The style is that which was customary at the time; at the beginning were the author's name followed by that of the recipients to whom was addressed a greeting, followed by thanksgiving to God.  At the end St Paul was wont to send a special greeting addressed to some of the more distinguished people involved. Then, since a scribe wrote the Letters from dictation, St Paul added a message in his own hand.  This ending is characteristic of the Letter to the Galatians and shows that St Paul, accustomed to manual work, wrote in very large script.

The letters of the other Apostles followed very much the same pattern, though each writer expresses his own personal characteristic in matter and style.
See the introductions to the individual letters in the text.

Barnabas introduced Paul to the apostolate
Of Cypriot origin, is presented in the Acts as a person of primary importance next to the Twelve, first in Jerusalem and then in Antioch.
His special merit was to have introduced Paul to the apostolate, in which he was also his companion for a time.  When he left Paul, tradition has it that he continued his apostolate in Cyprus and that he suffered martyrdom there in the city of Salamis.
His double name Saul-Paul is derived from the contemporary custom of coupling with the Jewish name another belonging to the Graeco-Roman milieu.
Paul was born at Tarsus between 5 and 10 A.D. and possessed Roman citizenship.  At home he received a very strict Jewish upbringing, but life in Tarsus opened his mind to wider horizons.  At Jerusalem he attended the rabbinical school of the Pharisee Gamaliel, and was so faithful a disciple that he won the confidence of the Jewish authorities, who eventually authorized him to suppress the new Christian sect.
There is no record of his having met Jesus.
The Acts of the Apostles tell us about Paul from his conversion until his captivity in Rome, dwelling much on his three apostolic journeys and the voyage which took him, after a terrible shipwreck, to the capital of the Empire; the book ends its story with Paul a prisoner in Rome.
He was freed, perhaps by an act of Clemency on the part of the Emperor Nero, and seems then to have visited Spain.
Later, he was arrested for the second time, at Troas, and was again taken to Rome, where he suffered martyrdom in about 67.
Tradition indicates the place called 'Aquae Salviae', where the Basilica of the Tre Fontane now stands, as the place where he was beheaded.
Author of the third Gospel and the Acts (see page 37),

John  Mark author of the second Gospel

Is the author of the second Gospel.  His proper Jewish name, John, was almost always supplanted by the Greek name, Mark.  Very probably, while still a boy he knew our Lord personally (see 'Gospel of Jesus', p. 322).

From the account in the Acts we know that his house in Jerusalem had become the meeting-place of the Christians, He later joined the Apostles and was first with Paul and then with Peter, with whom, in Rome, he wrote his Gospel in Greek for Gentile converts.

Tradition speaks of him next as founder of the Church in Alexandria in Egypt, where he is said to have suffered martyrdom.  In 828 A.D. Venetian merchants took his remains to Venice.
Believed to be the young man who ran away when Jesus was arrested (Mark 14:51-52), and the "John whose other name was Mark" (Acts 12:25).
Disciple of Saint Peter who travelled with him to Rome, and was referred to as "my son Mark" by the first Pope.
Author of the earliest canonical Gospel. Travelled with his cousin Saint Barnabas, and with Saint Paul through Cyprus.
Evangelized in Alexandria, established the Church there, and founded the first famous Christian school.
Martyred 25 April 68 at Alexandria; relics at Venice, Italy Name Meaning God is gracious; gift of God (John)
Judas' Betrayal Sheds Light on God's Mercy Pope Benedict XVI
Dedicates Address to Apostles Judas and Matthias

VATICAN CITY, OCT. 18, 2006 ( Through Judas Iscariot's betrayal of Christ, we learn that Jesus respects human freedom and waits for a sinner's repentance, says Benedict XVI.
The Holy Father said this today addressing some 30,000 who had gathered in St. Peter's Square for the general audience.  Benedict XVI dedicated his catechesis to the figure of Judas Iscariot, the apostle who betrayed Christ, and Matthias, the apostle who replaced Judas as one of the Twelve Apostles. The Pope said that to understand the life of Judas means to understand decisive aspects of the mystery of man's relationship with God.  Even after Judas' death, said the Holy Father, it is not possible to pass a definitive judgment on him:
Although "he departed afterward to hang himself, it is not for us to judge his gesture, putting ourselves in God's place, who is infinitely merciful and just."
     In reading the Gospel, the Pontiff said, it is clear that Judas, who was the apostle who carried out administrative functions, was one of the Twelve Apostles, as was Peter, John or James. Benedict XVI then asked: "Why did he betray Jesus?" "Some say it was his greed for money; others give an explanation of a messianic nature: Judas was disappointed on seeing that Jesus did not fit the program of the political-military liberation of his country," the Pope said.
    The Holy Father said that the Gospels "insist on another aspect: John says expressly that 'the devil had already put it into the heart of Judas Iscariot, Simon's son, to betray him.'" The New Testament, said the Pontiff, "goes beyond historical motivations, explaining what occurred by basing it on Judas' personal responsibility, who yielded miserably to a temptation of the evil one."
     Benedict XVI continued: "In any case, Judas' betrayal continues to be a mystery. Jesus treated him as a friend, but in his invitations to follow him on the path of the beatitudes he did not force his will or prevent him from falling into Satan's temptations, respecting human freedom." And when someone sins as Judas did, the Pope said, quoting Chapter 5 of the Rule of St. Benedict, he should "never despair of God's mercy," because, as St. John says, "God is greater than our hearts."
     The Holy Father said the Church can draw two lessons: "The first: Jesus respects our freedom. The second: Jesus waits for us to have the disposition to repent and to be converted; he is rich in mercy and forgiveness."
"In fact, when we think of the negative role Judas played, we must frame it in the higher way with which God disposed the events," said the Bishop of Rome.
Good from evil
     Benedict XVI said Judas' betrayal "led to the death of Jesus who transformed this tremendous torment into a space of salvific love and in self-giving to the Father." "In his mysterious plan of salvation, God assumes Judas' unjustifiable gesture as the motive for the total giving up of the Son for the redemption of the world," the Pope said. At the end of his address, the Holy Father also referred to Matthias, who substituted Judas Iscariot by decision of the remaining eleven apostles, after demonstrating fidelity to Christ during his public life.
      "We draw a final lesson from here: Although there is no lack of unworthy and traitorous Christians in the Church, it is up to us to counterbalance the evil they do with our limpid testimony of Jesus Christ our lord and savior," said the Pontiff. With this catechesis, Benedict XVI finished his series of meditations on the Twelve Apostles, which he began on May 17,2006.
The meditations form part of a series of catecheses on the origins of the Church and its relationship with Christ, begun on March 15. The papal addresses may be consulted in the Wednesday's Audience section of ZENIT's Web page. ZE06101805