November 30th is the feast of St. Andrew the Apostle. The name Andrew is Greek and it means manly or virtuous. It was a common name among the Greeks and those regions under Greek influence. Andrew’s brother's name is Aramaic, Simon. Andrew and Simon were Jews, although Andrew’s name was Greek.
Andrew is called by the Greek Catholic and Orthodox Churches, “First Called.” (Protokletos) We know Andrew after meeting Jesus for the first time went to get his brother, Simon. Andrew introduced Simon to Jesus.
The following are a few highlights from the life of the one who is named “First Called."
Andrew is a great intercessory saint for many reasons, but I would like to show you two occasions in Scripture that point to his gift of connecting people to Jesus.
Andrew was among those present when Jesus was teaching the 5,000. Late in the afternoon after teaching, Jesus asked Philip how they should feed the crowd. Philip responded not even 200 days wages would feed the multitude. Andrew, however, observing a young boy commented, "There is a lad with 5 fish and 2 loaves of bread, but asked“What good is that? John 6:1-15.
We know that Jesus took the young boy’s fish and bread that Andrew had brought to Our Lord’s attention and multiplied them into enough to feed 5,000 and more!
On another occasion, Philip who was from Bethsaida, like Andrew and Simon Peter, and a friend of theirs was asked by Greek visitors in Jerusalem during the Passover to introduce them to Jesus. Philip, perhaps remembering Andrew’s success with the young lad with the fish and bread, went to Andrew first and together, Philip and Andrew brought the Greek visitors to Jesus.
Just as Andrew introduced Simon Peter to Jesus and another time introduced the young boy with the loaves and fish to Jesus, here he introduces Greek visitors to the Lord.
Don't hesitate to ask him to help you go deeper in your Advent preparations for the birth of Jesus.
After Our Lord's Death, Resurrection and the Descent of the Holy Spirit, Andrew witnessed to the teachings of Jesus throughout the Middle East, some think as far as Russia.
“According to Tradition, … In 60 AD, during the reign of Nero, he was working in Patras, where he baptised the wife and brother of the Governor, Aegeus. The Governor was so incensed by this, he ordered the death of the Apostle. Andrew was crucified on a cross in the shape of an X on November 30th.”
The above quotation is found in St. Mary’s Roman Catholic Cathedral, Edinburgh, Scotland.
|St. Mary's Roman Catholic Cathedral
St. Andrew was originally buried in Patras, but his bones were eventually moved to Constantinople in the fourth century and later in the twelfth century to Amalfi, Italy.
Legend has it that St. Regulus, a Greek monk brought a few relics of St. Andrew to Scotland. A chapel was dedicated to St. Andrew and a town named after him. In the 8th century the leader of the Pics and Scots, Oengus, fearing the loss of a battle to the Angles promised St. Andrew he would dedicated Scotland to his patronage if he won. He did win and the country was dedicated to St. Andrew. In 1158 a beautiful cathedral was built, which became the center of Medieval Catholic Church in Scotland. During the Protestant Reformation the cathedral and its relics were burned. Only the ruins of the cathedral remain today in the city of St. Andrews. November 30 is the patronal feast of Scotland and a national holiday. Traditional customs and foods are associated with the holiday. See picture and link to a recipe below. The national flag is the saltire cross flag.
|Remains of ruined cathedral
St. Andrew's Christmas Novena Prayer
begin this prayer on November 30, recite it 15 times each day and conclude on Christmas
Hail and Blessed be the hour and the moment when the Son of God was born of the most holy Virgin Mary at midnight in Bethlehem in the piercing cold. In that hour, I beseech thee O God, to hear my prayer and grant my desires (here mention your intentions) through the merits of Our Savior Jesus Christ and His Most Blessed Mother. Amen
|Petticoat Tails Shortbread
Our baker is not Scottish but her shortbread is the traditional Petticoat Tails !