Saint Andrew, “the first called” to the apostleship, is considered the protector of the wolves and was the brother of Simon Peter, who was also among the 12 apostles of the Lord, being both sons of the fisherman Jonah. They were initially from Bethsaida. A town on the shores of Lake Geniza (Sea of Galilee). In the province of Galilee in the northern Holy Land. Both were fishermen, along with their Father. Both were among the “disciples” of St. John the Baptist. He listened for a long time to his sermons in the wilderness of Jordan. With exhortations to repentance and prophecies of the coming Messiah.
Andrew heard the words, “Behold the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world” (John 1:29). He also witnessed, with other disciples, the baptism of the Lord. So the well-known conversation between Jesus and John.
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What does Saint Andrew look like?
The Apostle St Andrew is depicted as a middle-aged man whose naked body is covered only by a drape around his pelvis. Framed by a long beard and short hair, the face is turned towards the X-shaped cross on which the saint leans. A fisherman on Lake Tiberias, like his younger brother St Peter, St Andrew was the first Apostle to follow Jesus. The golden legend of James of Voragine lends him a legendary apostolate after Pentecost in Asia Minor, along the Black Sea coast, and finally in Greece, where he was crucified by order of the Roman authorities. Particularly venerated by the Orthodox Church, he is also the patron saint of Scotland.
Read also: Why is Pentecost called Whitsunday?
How is St. Andrew seen in the Gospels?
In the Synoptic Gospels (Gospels of St. Matthew, St. Mark, and St. Luke), it is reported that Jesus calls Peter and Andrew as they cast their nets into the sea. Christ commands them to follow him and promises to make them fishers of men. Andrew is among those, along with Peter, James, and John, who ask Jesus about the signs of the end of the world on the Mount of Olives, which will inspire the eschatological discourse of the Gospel of St. Mark (Mark, XIII ). In the Gospel of St. John, Andrew is the first named Apostle, a disciple of John the Baptist before Jesus’ call.
In the Proto-Byzantine tradition (based on John, I, 40), Andrew is said to be proctocolitis, the first named ( protoklêtos in Greek). Legends from the early days of the Church record her missionary activity in the Black Sea region. Apocryphal writings that mention him include the Acts of Andrew, the Acts of Andrew and Matthew, and the Acts of Peter and Andrew. A 4th-century text related his death to resurrection and mentioned an X-shaped cross in the Middle Ages. Iconography depicts him accompanied by a cross called Saint Andrew.
Read also: Who are the apostles at the Last Supper?
Feast of Saint Andrew
Saint Andrew is the second Apostle mentioned by the evangelists Saint Matthew and Saint Mark. His feast day is 30 November; in the College, this feast is solemnized on the Sunday preceding the First Sunday of Advent: solemn liturgy and honoring of relics. He was thus the first disciple called by Jesus Christ. Saint Andrew often served as an intermediary. In particular, he introduced his brother Simon to Jesus. Then, during the multiplication episode, he brought the little boy carrying the five loaves and the two fish. When the Greeks wanted to meet Jesus, they turned to him again.
After Pentecost, he went on a long journey to preach the Gospel all along the Black Sea coast. His travels took him to Bethany (the Turkish coast), Ephesus, Mesopotamia, present-day Ukraine, Thrace (the region between the Bosphorus and the Danube), Byzantium, and finally, Achaia (the area north of the Peloponnese). He was crucified in the year 0060 AD by order of Aegean. The Apostle survived two days on his feet and continued to confess his attachment to Christ with admirable perseverance.
The Calvary of Saint Andrew
Saint Andrew of Bethsaida in Galilee, on the shore of Lake Tiberias. Together with his brother Pierre, he lived fishing. He was thirsty for God. He had heard the sermons of John the Baptist, had no doubt received his baptism of penance, and had become one of his disciples. Saint Andrew had been able to discern John’s exact mission.
Also, when he heard Jesus say, “Behold the Lamb of God,” he followed him, never to leave him again. Andrew becomes an apostle from this calling even before receiving this title. He meets his brother Peter and leads him to Jesus. He is a man who knows how to make contacts. During the multiplication of the loaves, Andrew is the one who brings the little boy who brings him the five loaves and the two fish. When the Greeks want to meet Jesus, they naturally turn to him. About Saint Andrew, late scholars report that he had his martyr calvary in Patras, Greece.
Saint Andrew’s Cross (×)
The Cross of Saint Andrew is X-shaped and symbolizes humility, suffering, and martyrdom in the Christian faith. The punishment Saint Andrew received was death by crucifixion. Still, according to tradition, he considered it unworthy to be crucified like the Lord his God, so he begged for a cross of a different shape. Thus he ended up being crucified on an X-shaped cross. St Andrew was crucified in the city of Patras, near Corinth, on an X-shaped cross (Crux decussata) called the ‘Cross of St Andrew.’
He witnessed His miracles and was imbued with His teachings. Saint Andrew and the other apostles were seen along with the other apostles, witnessing the torments and humiliations to which the Jews subjected the Saviour. He believed, along with the other apostles, that Jesus Christ had risen from the dead. He saw the risen Lord on the first day and eight days later. And when He appeared in Galilee and commanded them to preach the Gospel among all the nations of the earth.
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Where are the relics of Saint Andrew?
In the 4th century, the relics of St Andrew were brought to Constantinople. For the Orthodox religion, he is the first of the apostles, and in the same way, he is also the patron saint of Russia and Scotland. In the last century, the Catholic Church has held Saint Andrew’s relics in Rome since the 15th century. Returned some of them to the Orthodox Church as a sign of Christian rapprochement.
Prayer to Saint Andrew
“Saint Andrew, whom nothing and no one stopped in preaching the true faith, give me the strength to remove from my body the evil that causes me to suffer.
Saint Andrew, who stripped yourself of everything to follow our Lord to the foot of the cross, deliver me from my evil, that I may do a little good by following your example. So that grace may spread in my body, you can command evil to disappear in the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit.”
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Andrew, whose Greek name means “manly,” was one of Jesus’ twelve apostles. Brother of Simon Peter and Son of Jonah (or John). Andrew’s name appears several times in the Gospels – the Synoptics show him on the Mount of Olives, and John describes him as a former disciple of John the Baptist.
To honor Saint Andrew, the Duke of Burgundy, Philippe de Bon, created the Order of the Golden Fleece in January 1430. The torture cross on which he was crucified was in the shape of an X, which gave him the name “Saint Andrew’s cross.” In the 4th century, his relics were transported to Constantinople, but they are in Amalfi, Italy. Each year, before we enter the holy season of Advent, we are happy to honor with dignity the Patron of our venerable College, where the faithful have gathered for 800 years to give God the worship he deserves.