The Holy and All-Praiseworthy Apostle Andrew the First-Called
On November 30th we celebrate the Apostle Andrew the First-Called. St. Andrew gets this title since he is one of Jesus’ first followers, having departed from being a follower of John to Baptist to join Christ. Besides being the first disciple of Jesus, we recognize St. Andrew for leading his brother, St. Peter, to Christ.
St. Andrew is particularly venerated in the Eastern Churches. This is because he went eastward to preach the word of God. Tradition is that St. Andrew through the grace of the Holy Spirit saw the lands of Ukraine/Kieven Rus and blessed it, and foretold that many golden-domed churches would be build their for the glory of God.
In the Julian calendar, the Feast of St. Andrew the First-Called is on December 13th. Therefore in Byzantine cultures, we call St. Andrew’s day the first day of winter. Whether your church is on the Gregorian or Julian calendar (we have both in our city), we can celebrate the martyrdom of the apostle with wintery crafts and activities with our children. We can remind our kids that though the people healed by St. Andrew were sad by his death (or feeling the cold of winter), the apostle rejoiced that he had been crucified and able to honour Christ with his death. Just as in the midst of winter, we can do many fun activities.
Read the scripture readings for this feast. So read 1 Corinthians 4: 9-16, Matthew 4:18-24, and John 1, 35-51.
There is an article on St. Andrew the First-Called by ByziMom. She talks about the Apostle’s martyrdom, and other details about his life. At the end of the article she links to a recipe for making Nativity-Fast-Friendly garlic rolls, with the mark of an X on them. (Because St. Andrew was martyred on a cross that was shaped as an X). So check it out here and if you’re good in the kitchen try making the rolls to celebrate St. Andrew!
Prayers and Tropars
Troparion: (tone 4)
As the first called of the apostles, and full brother of their leader, implore the Master of all to give peace to the world and great mercy to our souls.
Kontakion: (tone 2)
Let us praise God’s herald, whose name is courage. Peter’s kinsman who leads those in the Church who follow the cheif apostle, for as then to Peter so now to us he cried aloud: “We have found the One so longed for.”
Prokeimenon: (tone 8)
Their utterance has gone forth into all the earth, and their words into the ends of the world
Verse: the heavens tell the glory of God, and the firmament declares the work of His hand.
The Byzantine Life
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