Friday, November 30, 2012

Fri, Nov 30, 2012 - Litany Lane Blog: Apocrypha, Romans 10, Psalm 19, Matthew 4: 18-22, Saint Andrew, Patras Greece

Friday, November 30, 2012 - Litany Lane Blog:

Apocrypha, Romans 10, Psalm 19, Matthew 4: 18-22, Saint Andrew, Patras Greece

Good Day Bloggers! 
Wishing everyone a Blessed Week!
Year of Faith - October 11, 2012 - November 24, 2013

P.U.S.H. (Pray Until Serenity Happens). It has a remarkable way of producing solace, peace, patience and tranquility and of course resolution...God's always available 24/7.

We are all human. We all experience birth, life and death. We all have flaws but we also all have the gift knowledge and free will as well, make the most of it. Life on earth is a stepping to our eternal home in Heaven. Its your choice whether to rise towards eternal light or lost to eternal darkness. Material items, though needed for sustenance and survival on earth are of earthly value only. The only thing that passes from this earth to Purgatory and/or Heaven is our Soul, our's God's perpetual gift to us...Embrace it, treasure it, nurture it, protect it...

"Raise not a hand to another unless it is to offer in peace and goodwill." ~ Zarya Parx 2012


November 25, 2012 Message From Our Lady of Medjugorje to World:

“Dear children! In this time of grace, I call all of you to renew prayer. Open yourselves to Holy Confession so that each of you may accept my call with the whole heart. I am with you and I protect you from the ruin of sin, but you must open yourselves to the way of conversion and holiness, that your heart may burn out of love for God. Give Him time and He will give Himself to you and thus, in the will of God you will discover the love and the joy of living. Thank you for having responded to my call.” ~ Blessed Virgin Mary

November 02, 2012 Message From Our Lady of Medjugorje to World:

"Dear children, as a mother I implore you to persevere as my apostles. I am praying to my Son to give you Divine wisdom and strength. I am praying that you may discern everything around you according to God’s truth and to strongly resist everything that wants to distance you from my Son. I am praying that you may witness the love of the Heavenly Father according to my Son. My children, great grace has been given to you to be witnesses of God’s love. Do not take the given responsibility lightly. Do not sadden my motherly heart. As a mother I desire to rely on my children, on my apostles. Through fasting and prayer you are opening the way for me to pray to my Son for Him to be beside you and for His name to be holy through you. Pray for the shepherds because none of this would be possible without them. Thank you."
~ Blessed Virgin Mary

October 25, 2012 Message From Our Lady of Medjugorje to World:

"Dear children! Today I call you to pray for my intentions. Renew fasting and prayer because Satan is cunning and attracts many hearts to sin and perdition. I call you, little children, to holiness and to live in grace. Adore my Son so that He may fill you with His peace and love for which you yearn. Thank you for having responded to my call." ~ Blessed Virgin Mary


Today's Word:  apocrypha  a·poc·ry·pha  [uh-pok-ruh-fuh]

Origin:  1350–1400; Middle English  < Late Latin  < Greek,  neuter plural of apókryphos  hidden, unknown, spurious, equivalent to apokryph-  (base of apokrýptein  to hide away; see apo-, crypt) + -os  adj. suffix

noun, ( often used with a singular verb  )
1. ( initial capital letter  ) a group of 14 books, not considered canonical, included in the Septuagint and the Vulgate as part of the Old Testament, but usually omitted from Protestant editions of the Bible. See table under Bible.
2. various religious writings of uncertain origin regarded by some as inspired, but rejected by most authorities.
3. writings, statements, etc., of doubtful authorship or authenticity. Compare canon1 (  defs 6, 7, 9 )


Today's Old Testament Reading -  Psalms 19:2-5

2 day discourses of it to day, night to night hands on the knowledge.
3 No utterance at all, no speech, not a sound to be heard,
4 but from the entire earth the design stands out, this message reaches the whole world. High above, he pitched a tent for the sun,
5 who comes forth from his pavilion like a bridegroom, delights like a champion in the course to be run.


Today's Epistle - Romans 10:9-18

9 that if you declare with your mouth that Jesus is Lord, and if you believe with your heart that God raised him from the dead, then you will be saved.
10 It is by believing with the heart that you are justified, and by making the declaration with your lips that you are saved.
11 When scripture says: No one who relies on this will be brought to disgrace,
12 it makes no distinction between Jew and Greek: the same Lord is the Lord of all, and his generosity is offered to all who appeal to him,
13 for all who call on the name of the Lord will be saved.
14 How then are they to call on him if they have not come to believe in him? And how can they believe in him if they have never heard of him? And how will they hear of him unless there is a preacher for them?
15 And how will there be preachers if they are not sent? As scripture says: How beautiful are the feet of the messenger of good news.
16 But in fact they have not all responded to the good news. As Isaiah says: Lord, who has given credence to what they have heard from us?
17 But it is in that way faith comes, from hearing, and that means hearing the word of Christ.
18 Well then, I say, is it possible that they have not heard? Indeed they have: in the entire earth their voice stands out, their message reaches the whole world.


Today's Gospel Reading - Matthew 4: 18-22

The call of Andrew and his brother
The first disciples fishers of men

O Father, you called St. Andrew from the net of the world to the wonderful fisher of men for the proclamation of the Gospel. Please also make us taste the sweetness of the heavenly Father and make us to be your beloved children. So that we can open our heart to you with full confidence in order to allow it to be made and be processed by the eyes and words of your beloved Son, our Lord Jesus, and that together with Him, we bring the joyful news of your merciful love to our brothers and sisters, which makes, that our life more beautiful.

As he was walking by the Sea of Galilee, he saw two brothers, Simon who is called Peter, and his brother Andrew, casting a net into the sea; they were fishermen.

19  He said to them, "Come after me, and I will make you fishers of men."
20  At once they left their nets and followed him.
21  He walked along from there and saw two other brothers, James, the son of Zebedee, and his brother John. They were in a boat, with their father Zebedee, mending their nets. He called them,
22 and immediately they left their boat and their father and followed him.


    * "He was walking along the Sea of Galilee." Jesus is just out of the desert, after 40 days of great loneliness and struggle against the devil (Mt 4, 1-11). It 'emerged victorious, secure his love of the Father and came into Galilee, and despised distant land, a land border and irrelevance, bringing his great light, his salvation (Mt 4, 12-16). And here he began to shout his message of joy and liberation: "The kingdom of heaven is at hand" (Mt 4, 17). There is no more loneliness, nor desert filled, there is no since the Lord Jesus has fallen on our land, Galilee of the Gentiles: in fact he is really close, it is God-with-us. It is not far away, does not stay still and hidden, but He "walks", walk along the sea, along the shores of our poor lives. Indeed, even more. Galilee, meaning "ring": this tells us that he, Love, is to marry, to join with Him forever. Then you just have to welcome him, as he walks by the sea. He already sees us, even from a distance, we already know ...

    * The verb "saw", repeated twice, first in reference to Andrew and his brother, then James and John, brings all the strength and intensity of a gaze that comes from the heart, from deep. Thus the Lord sees us: our readers in, with loving attention browse the pages of our lives, knows everything about us, everything he loves.

    * It is no accident that Matthew often uses the vocabulary to describe this episode of family vocation, encounter with the Lord Jesus we find four times the word "brother" and two times the word "father." We brought home our principle of life, where we discover that we too are sons and brothers. Jesus enters our reality in this most human, most us, more everyday, enters the flesh, in the heart, in my entire life. It is recovered, to make us be born again.

    * "Follow me." These are his words, simple and clear: he asks us to set out, to move, we, like him, "Come." It 'nice feeling to awaken from this voice that reaches us and is stronger, sweeter than the voice of the waters of the sea in the world, noisy and confused. When he speaks to the heart, becomes a great calm, calm returns. And then we also offer on course, marks the path to follow, does not let us lose, "Behind me," says the Lord. Just accept the invitation, just accept Him to know more, we just follow him, he is to open the road.

    "They left and followed." The two brothers, the first called Peter and Andrew, they become for us the beginning of this journey, as a clear, strong, sure. They teach us to do the moves, the movement, choices. "Release" and "Forward" became the key verbs, the words written in the heart. Yes, because maybe it will happen more often have to do these operations on the inside, in the secret soul, where only we can see. Where only the Lord is faithful, even for us it does this wonderful word of gospel, so bright and strong that changes your life.

    * "Now." Twice, Matthew shows us in welcoming the readiness of the disciples the Lord is passing by, his gaze, his voice for them. They do not put obstacles, no doubt, have no fear, but trust him blindly, respond immediately, saying yes to that Love.

    In a crescendo, Matthew sliding before our eyes all the elements that inspired the scene, on the shore of the sea: nets, boats, the father ... it slips away into the background, is left aside. There remains only the Lord who goes before and behind him, called the four, new men, that they carry our name, the story that God wrote for us.

Some questions
    * The horizon of this Gospel story, and then the grace that God still does for us is the sea, a clear sea, which has a name, its geography. I can, before the Word of God, at this moment, to give a precise face the horizon of my life? I have the inner peace to lay bare before the eyes of Christ, my life as it is, my Galilee, my sea? Did I fear that the water in my heart, like a menacing sea, dark, enemy? I can allow the Lord to walk through my bank? I can let myself look like Andrea, as Simon, James and John?

    * And if I'm silent at this moment, if I leave the steps of Jesus really are as close to me to leave my poor sand on his prints of love, friendship, then I have the courage to let me get by His eyes full of light? Or continue to hide a bit ', to escape, to hide somewhere in part, that I do not want to see or accept?
    And again, I let him talk to me, tell me, perhaps for the first time: "Come after me"? Or prefer to just keep listening to the sound of the sea, its waves of invading, broken?

    * This Gospel speaks to me very strongly of the company of brothers, I speak of my being son, lays bare the deepest part of the heart, enter the intimacy of home. Perhaps this is the place where there is more pain for me, where I do not feel understood, accepted and loved as I? For the Lord puts his finger in my wound? Brothers, father, mother, friends ... Jesus is all this for me, and much more. I feel it really so? There is room for Him in my house? And how is my relationship with him? As a brother, friend, son? Or do you only know from a distance, the surface of escape?

    * It seems very clear that this passage the Lord does great things in the life of the disciples: "I make you fishers of men," he tells them. How to react to this discovery? I let myself be touched by Him, truly, really? I want to let me change your life? With Him I want to start a new adventure, looking for brothers and sisters who need to meet, to know, to feel loved by his infinite love? I can be a fisher of men, like Andrew and his brothers.

    * We have just one thing: the decision, the decision to follow the Lord, to walk behind him tried to stop a moment longer ... What I have to leave today to take this step important? What is holding me back, I silt, which does not allow me to move? What weight in my heart, soul? Perhaps born in me the need to confess, to open my heart. Porto now written into the look that he has laid on me, his words, stronger than the sound of the sea, I can not pretend nothing happened. The Lord is in the past has left a mark. I am no longer that of my first ... I mean yes, as Andrew. Amen.

Reference: Courtesy of Order of Carmelites,


Featured Item of the Day from Litany Lane


Saint of the Day:   Saint Andrew, the Apostle

Feast Day:  November 30
Patron Saint:  Fishermen

Saint Andrew (Greek: Ἀνδρέας, Andreas; from the early 1st century – mid to late 1st century AD), called in the Orthodox tradition Prōtoklētos, or the First-called, is a Christian Apostle and the brother of Saint Peter. The name "Andrew" (Greek: manly, brave, from ἀνδρεία, Andreia, "manhood, valour"), like other Greek names, appears to have been common among the Jews, Christians, and other Hellenized people of the region. No Hebrew or Aramaic name is recorded for him. He is considered the founder and the first bishop of the Church of Byzantium and is consequently the patron saint of the Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople.

The New Testament states that Andrew was the brother of Simon Peter,by which it is inferred that he was likewise a son of John, or Jonah. He was born in Bethsaida on the Sea of Galilee. Both he and his brother Peter were fishermen by trade, hence the tradition that Jesus called them to be his disciples by saying that he will make them "fishers of men" (Greek: ἁλιεῖς ἀνθρώπων, halieĩs anthrōpōn). At the beginning of Jesus' public life, they were said to have occupied the same house at Capernaum.

The Gospel of John states that Andrew was a disciple of John the Baptist, whose testimony first led him, and another unnamed disciple of John the Baptist to follow Jesus. Andrew at once recognized Jesus as the Messiah, and hastened to introduce him to his brother. 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.

In the gospels, Andrew is referred to as being present on some important occasions as one of the disciples more closely attached to Jesus, Andrew told Jesus about the boy with the loaves and fishes (John 6:8), with Philip told Jesus about the Greeks seeking Him, and was one of four (the others being Peter, James, and John) to hear Jesus' teaching about what would soon happen.

Eusebius quotes Origen as saying Andrew preached along the Black Sea and the Dnieper and Volga rivers as far as Kiev and Novgorod Hence he became a patron saint of Ukraine, Romania and Russia. According to tradition, he founded the See of Byzantium (Constantinople) in AD 38, installing Stachys as bishop. According to Hippolytus of Rome, he preached in Thrace, and his presence in Byzantium is also mentioned in the apocryphal Acts of Andrew, written in the 2nd century; Basil of Seleucia also knew of Apostle Andrew's mission in Thrace, as well as Scythia and Achaia. This diocese would later develop into the Patriarchate of Constantinople. Andrew is recognized as its patron saint.

Andrew is said to have been martyred by crucifixion at the city of Patras (Patræ) in Achaea, on the northern coast of the Peloponnese. Early texts, such as the Acts of Andrew known to Gregory of Tours, describe Andrew as bound, not nailed, to a Latin cross of the kind on which Jesus is said to have been crucified; yet a tradition developed that Andrew had been crucified on a cross of the form called Crux decussata (X-shaped cross, or "saltire"), now commonly known as a "Saint Andrew's Cross" — supposedly at his own request, as he deemed himself unworthy to be crucified on the same type of cross as Jesus had been. "The familiar iconography of his martyrdom, showing the apostle bound to an X-shaped cross, does not seem to have been standardized before the later Middle Ages," Judith Calvert concluded after re-examining the materials studied by Louis Réau.

The Acts of Andrew

Crucifixion of St. Andrew.
The apocryphal Acts of Andrew, mentioned by Eusebius, Epiphanius and others, is among a disparate group of Acts of the Apostles that were traditionally attributed to Leucius Charinus. "These Acts (...) belong to the third century: ca. A.D. 260," was the opinion of M. R. James, who edited them in 1924.

The Acts, as well as a Gospel of St Andrew, appear among rejected books in the Decretum Gelasianum connected with the name of Pope Gelasius I. The Acts of Andrew was edited and published by Constantin von Tischendorf in the Acta Apostolorum apocrypha (Leipzig, 1821), putting it for the first time into the hands of a critical professional readership.

Another version of the Andrew legend is found in the Passio Andreae, published by Max Bonnet (Supplementum II Codicis apocryphi, Paris, 1895).


The statue of Saint Andrew in St. Peter's Basilica, Vatican City; the relic of his cross was kept directly above this.
Relics of the Apostle Andrew are kept at the Basilica of St Andrew in Patras, Greece; the Duomo di Sant'Andrea, Amalfi, Italy; St Mary's Roman Catholic Cathedral, Edinburgh, Scotland; and the Church of St Andrew and St Albert, Warsaw, Poland. There are also numerous smaller reliquaries throughout the world.

St Jerome wrote that the relics of St Andrew were taken from Patras to Constantinople by order of the Roman emperor Constantius II around 357 and deposited in the Church of the Holy Apostles. The head of Andrew was given by the Byzantine despot Thomas Palaeologus to Pope Pius II in 1461. It was enshrined in one of the four central piers of St Peter's Basilica in the Vatican.

In September 1964, Pope Paul VI, as a gesture of goodwill toward the Greek Orthodox Church, ordered that all of the relics of St Andrew that were in Vatican City be sent back to Patras. The relics, which consist of the small finger, part of the top of the cranium of Andrew, and small portions of the cross on which he was martyred, have since that time been kept in the Church of St Andrew at Patras in a special shrine and are revered in a special ceremony every November 30, his feast day.


In 1208, following the sack of Constantinople, those relics of St Andrew and St Peter which remained in the imperial city were taken to Amalfi, Italy, by Cardinal Peter of Capua, a native of Amalfi. The Amalfi cathedral (Duomo), dedicated to St Andrew (as is the town itself), contains a tomb in its crypt that it maintains still contains the rest of the relics of the apostle. On 8 May 2008 the relic believed to be Andrew's head was returned to Amalfi Cathedral.

Traditions and legends


The church tradition of Georgia regards St. Andrew as the first preacher of Christianity in the territory of Georgia and as the founder of the Georgian church. This tradition was apparently derived from the Byzantine sources, particularly Nicetas of Paphlagonia (died c. 890) who asserts that "Andrew preached to the Iberians, Sauromatians, Taurians, and Scythians and to every region and city, on the Black Sea, both north and south." The version was adopted by the 10th-11th-century Georgian ecclesiastics and, refurbished with more details, was inserted in the Georgian Chronicles. The story of St. Andrew’s mission in the Georgian lands endowed the Georgian church with apostolic origin and served as a defense argument to George the Hagiorite against the encroachments from the Antiochian church authorities on autocephaly of the Georgian church. Another Georgian monk, Ephraim the Minor, produced a thesis, reconciling St. Andrew’s story with an earlier evidence of the 4th-century conversion of Georgians by St. Nino and explaining the necessity of the “second Christening” by Nino. The thesis was made canonical by the Georgian church council in 1103.


Cypriot tradition holds that a ship which was transporting Saint Andrew went off course and ran aground. Upon coming ashore, Andrew struck the rocks with his staff at which point a spring of healing waters gushed forth. Using it, the sight of the ship's captain, who had been blind in one eye, was restored. Thereafter, the site became a place of pilgrimage and a fortified monastery stood there in the 12th century, from which Isaac Comnenus negotiated his surrender to Richard the Lionheart. In the 15th century, a small chapel was built close to the shore. The main monastery of the current church dates to the 18th century.

Other pilgrimages are more recent. The story is told that in 1895, the son of a Maria Georgiou was kidnapped. Seventeen years later, Saint Andrew appeared to her in a dream, telling her to pray for her son's return at the monastery. Living in Anatolia, she embarked on the crossing to Cyprus on a very crowded boat. Telling her story during the journey, one of the passengers, a young Dervish priest became more and more interested. Asking if her son had any distinguishing marks, he stripped off his cloths to reveal the same marks and mother and son were thus reunited.

Apostolos Andreas Monastery (Greek: Απόστολος Ανδρέας) is a monastery dedicated to Saint Andrew situated just south of Cape Apostolos Andreas, which is the north-eastern most point of the island of Cyprus,in Rizokarpason in the Karpass Peninsula. The monastery is an important site to the Cypriot Orthodox Church. It was once known as 'the Lourdes of Cyprus', served not by an organized community of monks but by a changing group of volunteer priests and laymen. Both Greek Cypriot and Turkish Cypriot communities consider the monastery a holy place. As such it is visited by many people for votive prayers.


The first reference regarding the first small chapel at Luqa dedicated to Andrew dates to 1497. This chapel contained three altars, one of them dedicated to Andrew. The painting showing "Mary with Saints Andrew and Paul" was painted by the Maltese artist Filippo Dingli. At one time, many fishermen lived in the village of Luqa, and this may be the main reason behind choosing Andrew as patron saint. The statue of Andrew was sculpted in wood by Giuseppe Scolaro in 1779. This statue underwent several restoration works including that of 1913 performed by the Maltese artist Abraham Gatt. The Martyrdom of Saint Andrew on the main altar of the church was painted by Mattia Preti in 1687.


The official stance of the Romanian Orthodox Church is that Andrew preached the Gospel to the Daco-Romans in the province of Dobrogea (Scythia Minor), whom he is said to have converted to Christianity. There have been some ancient Christian symbols found carved in a cave called Basarabi, near Constanţa harbor. This have been used for propaganda purposes in the communist era as part of the protochronism ideology, which purports that the Orthodox Church has been a companion and defender of the Romanian people for all of its history. This theory is largely dismissed by scholars and researchers including George Alexandrou

According to Alexandrou research, St. Andrew spent 20 years on the Dacian territories preaching and teaching. Alexandrou also supposed that St. Andrews felt very close to the Dacians because they were monotheists. During that period St.Andrews traveled around the Danube territories and along the coast of the Black Sea, but mostly he was in and around his cave in Dobrogea, in South East Romania. St. Andrew’s cave is still kept as a holy place. Later, John Cassian (360-435), Dionysius Exiguus(470-574) and Joannes Maxentius (leader of the so-called Scythian monks) lived in the same area known as Scythia Minor or Dobrogea, in South East Romania

There are many traditions without religious meaning connected to St. Andrew day, some of them having their origin on the Roman celebrations of Saturn. The Dacian New Year took place from the 14th of November until the 7th of December, this was the interval when time began its course. One of the elements that came from the Roman and Thracian celebrations was one about wolves. During this night, the wolves are allowed to eat all the animals they want. It is said that they can speak, too, but anyone that hears them will die soon. Early on St. Andrew’s day, the mothers go into the garden and pick tree branches, especially from apple trees, pear trees, cherry trees, but also rosebush branches. They make a bunch of branches for each family member. The one whose bunch will bloom by New Years day will be lucky and healthy next year. The best known tradition connected to this night is the one about matrimony and premonitory dreams. Single girls must put under their pillow a branch of sweet basil. If someone takes the plants in their dreams, that means the girl will marry soon. They can also plant wheat in a dish and water it until New Year’s day. The nicer the wheat looks that day, the better the year to come. All these traditions have no religious meaning, but they are approached during St.Andrew day.,

Ukraine, Romania, and Russia

St Andrew's prophecy of Kiev depicted in Radzivill Chronicle.
Early Christian History in Ukraine holds that the apostle Andrew is said to have preached on the southern borders of modern-day Ukraine, along the Black Sea. Legend has it that he travelled up the Dnieper River and reached the future location of Kiev, where he erected a cross on the site where the St. Andrew's Church of Kiev currently stands, and prophesied the foundation of a great Christian city, Jerusalem of the Russian/Ukrainian land.

It was in the obvious interest of Kievan Rus' and its later Russian and Ukraninian successors, striving in numerous ways to link themselves with the political and religious heritage of Byzantium, to claim such a direct visit from the famous. Claiming direct lineage from St. Andrew also had the effect of disregarding any theological leanings of Greek Orthodoxy over which disagreement arose, since the actual "indirect" proselytising via Byzantium was bypassed altogether. Still, as the same source quotes, Andrew only preached to the southern shore of the Black Sea (current Turkey).


St. Andrew carving c.1500 in the National Museum of Scotland
About the middle of the 10th century, Andrew became the patron saint of Scotland. Several legends state that the relics of Andrew were brought by divine guidance from Constantinople to the place where the modern town of St Andrews stands today (Gaelic, Cill Rìmhinn).

The oldest surviving manuscripts are two: one is among the manuscripts collected by Jean-Baptiste Colbert and willed to Louis XIV of France, now in the Bibliothèque Nationale, Paris, the other in the Harleian Mss in the British Library, London. They state that the relics of Andrew were brought by one Regulus to the Pictish king Óengus mac Fergusa (729–761). The only historical Regulus (Riagail or Rule) (whose name is preserved in the tower of St Rule was an Irish monk expelled from Ireland with Saint Columba; his dates, however, are c 573 – 600. There are good reasons for supposing that the relics were originally in the collection of Acca, bishop of Hexham, who took them into Pictish country when he was driven from Hexham (c. 732), and founded a see, not, according to tradition, in Galloway, but on the site of St Andrews. The connection made with Regulus is, therefore, due in all probability to the desire to date the foundation of the church at St Andrews as early as possible.

According to legend, in 832 AD, Óengus II led an army of Picts and Scots into battle against the Angles, led by Æthelstan, near modern-day Athelstaneford, East Lothian. The legend states that he was heavily outnumbered and hence whilst engaged in prayer on the eve of battle, Óengus vowed that if granted victory he would appoint Saint Andrew as the Patron Saint of Scotland. On the morning of battle white clouds forming an X shape in the sky were said to have appeared. Óengus and his combined force, emboldened by this apparent divine intervention, took to the field and despite being inferior in numbers were victorious. Having interpreted the cloud phenomenon as representing the crux decussata upon which Saint Andrew was crucified, Óengus honoured his pre-battle pledge and duly appointed Saint Andrew as the Patron Saint of Scotland. The white saltire set against a celestial blue background is said to have been adopted as the design of the flag of Scotland on the basis of this legend. However, there is evidence Andrew was venerated in Scotland before this.

Andrew's connection with Scotland may have been reinforced following the Synod of Whitby, when the Celtic Church felt that Columba had been "outranked" by Peter and that Peter's brother would make a higher ranking patron. The 1320 Declaration of Arbroath cites Scotland's conversion to Christianity by Andrew, "the first to be an Apostle". Numerous parish churches in the Church of Scotland and congregations of other Christian churches in Scotland are named after Andrew. The national church of the Scottish people in Rome, Sant'Andrea degli Scozzesi is dedicated to St Andrew.

St. Andrew's cross carved in fireplace to prevent witches from entering a house
A local superstition uses the cross of Saint Andrew as a hex sign on the fireplaces in northern England and Scotland to prevent witches from flying down the chimney and entering the house to do mischief. By placing the St Andrew's cross on one of the fireplace posts or lintels, witches are prevented from entering through this opening. In this case, it is similar to the use of a witch ball, although the cross will activily prevent witches from entering, and the witch ball will passively delay or entice the witch, and perhaps entrap it.



Andrew is the patron saint of Barbados, Scotland, Ukraine, Russia, Romania, Patras in Greece, Amalfi in Italy, Luqa in Malta, and Esgueira in Portugal. He was also the patron saint of Prussia and of the Order of the Golden Fleece. The flag of Scotland (and consequently the Union Flag which also features on the flags of Australia, New Zealand and the arms and flag of Nova Scotia) feature St Andrew's saltire cross. The saltire is also the flag of Tenerife, the flag of Galicia and the naval jack of Russia. The Confederate flag also features a saltire commonly referred to as a St Andrew's cross, although its designer, William Porcher Miles, said he changed it from an upright cross to a saltire so that it would not be a religious symbol but merely a heraldic device. The Florida and Alabama flags also show that device. Andrew is also the patron saint of the U.S. Army Rangers.

The feast of Andrew is observed on November 30 in both the Eastern and Western churches, and is the national day of Scotland. In the traditional liturgical books of the Catholic Church, the feast of St. Andrew is the first feast day in the Proper of Saints.


        • Metzger, Bruce M. (ed); , Michael D. Coogan (ed) (1993). The Oxford Companion to the Bible. Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press. ISBN 0-19-504645-5.
        • Attwater, Donald and Catherine Rachel John. The Penguin Dictionary of Saints. 3rd edition. New York: Penguin Books, 1993. ISBN 0-14-051312-4.
        • The Life and Miracles of St. Andrew The Apostle
        • Andreas: The Legend of St. Andrew translated by Robert Kilburn Root, 1899, from Project Gutenberg
        • Paintings and Statues of Saint Andrew in Malta and around the world
        • National Shrine to St Andrew in Edinburgh Scotland
        • Scottish Government Celebrations of St. Andrew's Day
        • Grimm's Saga No. 150 about St. Andrew
        • St. Andrew page at Christian Iconography
        • "The Life of St. Andrew" from Caxton's translation of the Golden Legend


            Featured Items Panel from Litany Lane


            Today's  Snippet  I:  Patras, Greece

            Patras  is Greece's third largest urban area and the regional capital of West Greece, located in northern Peloponnese, 215 km (134 mi) west of Athens. The city is built at the foothills of Mount Panachaikon, overlooking the Gulf of Patras.

            The Patras City Area is a conurbation of 160.400 inhabitants, while its wider urban area, that forms within the new Patras municipality according to kallikrates plan, had a population of 214.580 (in 2011). The core settlement has a history spanning four millennia. In the Roman period it had become a cosmopolitan centre of the eastern Mediterranean whilst, according to Christian tradition, it was also the place of Saint Andrew's martyrdom.

            Dubbed Greece's Gate to the West, Patras is a commercial hub, while its busy port is a nodal point for trade and communication with Italy and the rest of Western Europe. The city has two public universities and one Technological Institute, hosting a large student population and rendering Patras a major scientific centre with a field of excellence in technological education. The Rio-Antirio bridge connects Patras' easternmost suburb of Rio to the town of Antirrio, connecting the Peloponnese peninsula with mainland Greece.

            Every year, in February, the city hosts one of Europe's largest and most colourful carnivals ; notable features of the Patras Carnival include its mammoth-sized satirical floats and extravagant balls and parades, enjoyed by hundreds of thousands of visitors in a pleasant Mediterranean climate. Patras is also famous for supporting an indigenous cultural scene active mainly in the performing arts and modern urban literature. It was European Capital of Culture 2006.


            The city of Patras has an important history of four thousand years. Patras has been inhabited since the prehistoric age and constituted an important centre of the Mycenean era. In the antiquity it was a leading member of the Achaean League. Patras reached the peak of its power in the Roman era, when an imperial colony was founded there by Augustus. In the Byzantine period it remained a commercial city. The town experienced repeated conquests from Latins, Venice, Francs, Byzantines and Ottomans. Later on, it played a leading part in the Greek revolution of 1821, the first revolt of which in Greece, broke out in Patras. In 19th century Greece, it was the second city of the country, the indisputable centre of the Peloponnese, an important export harbour and a cradle of the emerging Greek middle class. In the 20th century the city developed as a commercial and industrial hub and in spite of its overshadowing by Athens, it is now the third city of Greece and the most significant economic pole of Peloponnese and West Greece.


            Patras, the Roman Odeum
            The first traces of settlement in Patras date to the 3rd millennium BC, in modern Aroe. During the Middle Helladic period (the first half of the 2nd millennium BC) another settlement was founded in the region. Patras flourished for the first time during the Post-Helladic or Mycenean period (1580–1100 BC). Ancient Patras was formed by the unification of three Mycenaean villages located in modern Aroe, Antheia and Mesatis. The foundation of Patras goes back to prehistoric times, the legendary account being that Eumelus, having been taught by Triptolemus how to grow grain in the rich soil of the Glaucus valley, established three townships, Aroe (i.e. "ploughland"), Antheia ("the flowery"), and Mesatis ("the middle settlement") united by the common worship of Artemis Triclaria at her shrine on the river Meilichus.

            Mythology further tells us that after the Dorian invasion, a group of Achaeans from Laconia, led by the eponymous Patreus, established a colony. The Achaeans, having strengthened and enlarged Aroe, called it Patrae, as the exclusive residence of the ruling families, and it was recognized as one of the twelve Achaean cities. During antiquity, Patras remained a farming region but in Classical times it became an important port. In 419 BC the town was, on the advice of Alcibiades, connected with its harbour by long walls in imitation of those at Athens.

            A bust of Antinous found in Patras (130-138 CE). It is kept in the National Archaeological Museum of Athens

            Roman Era

            After 280 BC, and prior to the Roman occupation of Greece, Patras played a significant role in the foundation of the second "Achaean League" (Achaike Sympoliteia) together with the cities Dyme, Triteia and Pharai. As a consequence, the initiative of political developments was transferred for the first time to western Achaea. However, the League's armed force was destroyed by Quintus Caecilius Metellus Macedonicus after the defeat of the Achaeans at Scarpheia in 146 BC, and many of the remaining inhabitants forsook the city; but after the Battle of Actium Augustus restored the ancient name Aroe, established a military colony of veterans from the 10th and 12th legions (not, as is usually said, the 22nd), and bestowed the rights of colonists on the inhabitants of Rhypae and Dyme, and all the Locri Ozolae except those of Amphissa.

            Colonia Augusta Achaica Patrensis (CAAP) became one of the most populous of all the towns of Greece; its colonial coinage extends from Augustus to Gordian III. A cadastral map was drawn up, privileges were granted, crafts were created, the most important being that of earthen oil lamps which were exported almost to the whole world of that time, two industrial zones were created, temples were built, roads that rendered Patras a communication center were opened, streets were paved with flagstones, foreign religions were introduced. Patras was by then a cosmopolitan city.

            The Golden Ass of Lucius Apuleius, one of the most well-known works of Latin literature, was said to be adapted from a lost Greek original by a Lucius of Patrae - of whom little is known, but who presumably lived at the city in this period.  At the end of the 3rd century AD, the city fell into decline, probably because of a strong earthquake that struck the whole of northeastern Peloponnese in AD 300.

            Saint Andrew

            According to the Christian tradition, Saint Andrew came to Patras to preach Christianity during the reign of Emperor Nero and was crucified as a martyr. He is ever since considered to be the patron saint of the city. Two temples built in his honor, an old Byzantine-style basilica and a new monumental church, completed in the 1970s, mark the traditional place of his crucifixion. Like Corinth, it was an early and effective centre of Christianity; its archbishop is mentioned in the lists of the Council of Sardica in 347.

            Byzantine Era

            During the Byzantine times Patras continued to be an important port as well as an industrial center. In 551 AD it was laid in ruins by an earthquake. In 807 AD it was able without external assistance to repulse a Slavonian siege, though most of the credit of the victory was assigned to St Andrew, whose church was enriched by the imperial share of the spoils, and whose archbishop was made superior of the bishops of Methone, Lacedaemon and Corone. Besides, one of the most scholarly philosophers and theologians of the time, Arethas of Caesarea was born at Patrae, at around 860. In the 9th century there is a sign that the city was prosperous: the widow Danielis from Patras had accumulated immense wealth in land ownership, carpet and textile industry and offered critical support in the ascent of Basil I to the Byzantine throne.

            Latin Era

            In 1204 Patras was conquered by the Fourth Crusade, and became the seat of the Latin Duchy of Achaea within the Principality of Achaea. Captured in 1205 by William of Champlitte and Geoffrey I of Villehardouin, the city became part of the principality of Achaea and its archbishop the primate. In 1387 Juan Fernández de Heredia, Grand Master of the Knights Hospitaller of Rhodes, endeavoured to make himself master of Achaea and took Patras by storm. In 1408, the city became Venetian. At the close of the 15th century the city was governed by the Latin archbishop in the name of the Pope; in 1428 the joint despots of the Morea, Constantine and Theodore, sons of Emperor Manuel II Palaiologos, managed to get possession of it for a time. It was seized again by the Despotate of the Morea in 1430, which was immediately contested by the Ottoman Empire.

            Ottoman Era

            The church of Pantocrator, as a mosque during the Ottoman rule, engraving after Edward Finden.
            In 1458 Patras was conquered by Sultan Mehmed II. Under the Ottomans, it was called Baliabadra (Greek: Παλαιά Πάτρα, the old town, as opposed to Νέα Πάτρα, the fortress). Though Mehmet granted the city special privileges and tax reductions, it never became a major center of commerce. Venice and Genoa attacked and captured Patras several times during the 15th and 16th centuries, but never re-established their rule effectively.

            On 7 October 1571, the Ottoman fleet on the one side, and the fleet of the Christian Holy League on the other, clashed in the Gulf of Patras in the Battle of Lepanto. The Ottomans were defeated, but the Holy League did not seize the city of Patras. The news of the Ottoman defeat were celebrated in Patras, but a revolt organized by five of the elders of the town and metropolitan Germanos I of Old Patras (1561–1572) was put down and its instigators were executed. The Venetians captured Patras from the Turks in 1687 during the Morean War and made it the seat of one of the seven fiscal boards into which they divided the Morea, but the Turks recaptured it, with the rest of the Morea in a swift campaign in 1715. Generally, the first period of Turkish rule (1460–1687) was miserable, but from 1715 and on there was a revival of commerce, and so in the 18th century Patras became again an economically prosperous town, based on agriculture and trade.

            Greek War of Independence

            Patras played a crucial role in the Greek War of Independence against the Ottomans (1821–29). The town was the first seat of the revolution along with the rest of Achaea and Mani. Patras was at the time the biggest and most prosperous town of the Peloponnese. An overwhelming, 2/3 majority of the town's 18.000 inhabitants where Greeks, and a small number of them was engaged in commerce, constituting the precursors of a middle class. Moreover, due to the town's commercial importance, some wealthy merhants of Patras had been appointed consuls of the major European states. The consul of Russia Vlassopoulos was also a member of the Filiki Eteria. The atmosphere in Patras had been tense since the mid-February 1821, when the Greeks refused to pay heavy taxes for the equipment of the Ottoman Army who was fighting against Ali Pasha. In the same period, members of the Filiki Etairia were preparing the field for a revolt in Patras, accumulating munition, money and equipment for their struggle. Odysseas Androutsos was hiding in Patras and Makryiannis arrived there trying to bring in contact the protagonists of the incoming revolts and coordinate the revolutionary effort. The Turks, who grew suspicious of these movements, transferred their belongings to the fortress on February 28, and their families on March 18 and fortified themselves in it. On March 23 the Turks launched sporadic attacks towards the town, trying to set certain houses on fire, which resulted on the destruction of some districts, while the revolutionaries, led by the freedom warrior Panagiotis Karatzas and using guns drove them back to the fortress. Makryiannis referred to the scene in his memoirs:
            Σε δυο ημέρες χτύπησε ντουφέκι ’στην Πάτρα. Οι Tούρκοι κάμαν κατά το κάστρο και οι Ρωμαίγοι την θάλασσα. Shooting broke out two days later in Patras. The Turks had seized the fortress, and the Greeks had taken the seashore.

            On March 25 the revolutionaries declared the Revolution in the square of Agios Georgios in Patras. Therefore, it was at Patras that the Revolution is held to have officially began on March 25, 1821 in the chapel of Agios Georgios. The Orthodox metropolitan of Patras and member of the Filiki Etairia Germanos, who was absent from Patras, returned to the town and blessed the freedom warriors. On the next day the leaders of the Revolution in Achaia sent a document to the foreign consulates explaining the reasons of the Revolution. However, some three hundred Turkish forces, mainly cavalry, under the command of Yussuf Pasha, heading from Ioannina to Euboea changed their direction and landed in Patras on April 3. The reinforcements joined the Turks of the castle, ransacked and destroyed the town. The consuls of the foreign powers who had been supportive of the revolt, namely those of Sweden, Prussia and Russia and the French consul Pouqueville who had given refuge to Greek revolutionaries, evacuated the town. The English consul Green who had kept a neutral stance refusing to accept Greeks in his consulate, and the French consul Pouqueville, in their written accounts describe the events and the extent of destruction as horrific. The irregular and unequiped revolutionary mob could not risk serious resistance. A possible exception was Panagiotis Karatzas, a local shoe-maker, who along with his men thwarted Turkish attacks on nearby settlements. Finally, the Turks, confined to the citadel, held out until being stormed by the French troops in 1828.

            Modern times

            The Apollo Theatre in Georgiou I square, a work of the architect Ernst Ziller, built with the contributions of the thriving 19th century commercial class
            Patras was liberated on 7 October 1828 by the French expeditionary force in the Peloponnese, under the command of General Maison. In 1829 the then Governor of Greece, Ioannis Kapodistrias approved a very ambitious new urban plan for the city - which was still in ruins - presented to him by the French army engineer Stamatis Voulgaris. The plan was not carried out until the mid-19th century and then only with great adaptations conforming to the interests of powerful land owners. Patras developed as the second largest urban centre in late 19th century Greece after Athens.

            The city benefited from its role as the main export port for the agricultural produce of the Peloponnese. It was the main centre for the organisation of production of raisin, offering warehouse, banking and insurance services. However, this early era of prosperity was short lived; the completion of the Corinth Canal in 1893 challenged the predominance of its port. Besides, in 1894 raisin export prices in the international markets began to plummet, due to overproduction and international circumstances, which triggered a prolonged crisis with deep financial, political and social repercussions, known as the Great raisin crisis. Trade with western Europe, mainly Britain, France and Italy, did much to shape the city's early identity as a significant port and cosmopolitan urban centre in early 20th century Greece.

            In the early 20th century, Patras developed fast and became the first Greek city to introduce public streetlights and electrified tramways. The war effort of World War I hampered the city's development and also created uncontrollable urban sprawl with the influx of Greek refugees from Asia Minor. During World War II, Patras was a major target of Italian air raids. At the time of the Axis occupation, a German military command was established and German and Italian troops were stationed in the city. On 13 December 1943, in the nearby town of Kalavryta, the German troops executed all the male population and set the town ablaze. After the liberation in October 1944, the city grew fast to recover, but in later years was increasingly overshadowed by the urban pole of Athens.


            View of the interior of the Church of Aghios Andreas.
            The city is the seat of a Greek Orthodox archbishopic. As in the rest of the country, the largest denomination is the Orthodox Church, which represents the majority of the population. There is also a living community of Roman Catholics.

            The most significant church in the city is the church of Saint Andrew, in the south west of the city center. The construction of the church began in 1908 under the supervision of the architect Anastasios Metaxas, followed by Georgios Nomikos. It was inaugurated in 1974. It is the largest church in Greece and the second largest Byzantine style church in the Balkans. It holds relics of the apostle Saint Andrew, which were sent there from St. Peter's Basilica, Rome in September, 1964, on the orders of Pope Paul VI.

            Other historical churches of the city are: the church of Pantokratoras (1832) in the upper town district, the Metropolis (Cathedral) of Patras (1846) dedicated to Panayia Evangelistria in Mezonos street, the church of Ayios Nikolaos (1885) situated next to the steps of Ayiou Nikolaou street, the church of Pantanassa (1859), the church of Ayios Dimitrios, the Catholic Church of Saint Andreas (1937) in Mezonos street, the Protestant (Anglican) church of Saint Andreas (1878) in Karolou Street and the old church of Ayios Andreas (1836–1843) situated next to the new one, in the location of Apostle Andreas' martyrdom. It was built in basilica style by the architect Lysandros Kaftatzoglou.


            The entrance of the new Archaeological Museum of Patras.
            Patras and its region is home to various Ancient Greek, Roman and Byzantine Monuments, including the Roman Odeon, the Fortress of Rio and the Fortress (castle) of Patras. More specifically, the main sights of the city are:
            • The Roman Odeon, the most significant ancient monument, is situated in the upper town and was built around 160 AD, during the reign of either Antoninus Pius or Marcus Aurelius. It has been restored and partially reconstructed, and is used as an open-air theatre for performances and concerts during summer months.
            • The medieval Patras Castle, in the location of the ancient acropolis overlooking city, was initially built in the 6th century AD by the Byzantine emperor Justinian, having many additions from the period of the Frankish and Venetian rule of the city, up to as far as the time of the Despotate of Morea and later the Ottoman Empire. Its current outline dates back to the second Venetian rule of the town (1687–1715). Today, its interior is used as a public garden.
            • The Roman Amphitheatre, situated near the Roman Odeon, in Ifestou street, is one of the most important and impressive monuments of the city. It is dated in the dues of the 1st century AD, at a period of the biggest development of Roman Patras. Its area has been only partially excavated.
            • The monumental church of Saint Andrew of Patras was founded in 1908 by king George I and was inaugurated in 1974. It is dedicated to Saint Andrew, the patron of the city and is situated near the seafront, between the areas of the new and the old port. It is the second largest temple of byzantine style in the Balkans (after the Cathedral of Saint Sava in Belgrade). The central cupola is 46 m (151 ft) tall and is the base for a 5 m (16 ft) gold-plated cross and twelve smaller ones, symbolizing Christ and the twelve apostles. A congregation of at least 5,000 can attend a sermon within the church.
            • The municipal Theatre Apollon, built in 1872 after plans by the German architect Ernst Ziller. The building is characteristic of the 19th century neoclassical style and is located in the central square of the city.
            • The Achaia Clauss wine industry and tasting center, which is located on the outskirts in Petroto village. It was founded in 1861 by the Bavarian Gustav Clauss and is most famous for its Mavrodaphne.
            • The Patras Archaeological Museum exhibits the history of Patras from the prehistoric era to the late Roman period. The exhibition is divided into three thematic sections demonstrated in the three large separate halls of the museum: the Chamber of Private Life, the Hall of Necropolis and the Hall of Public Life.
            • The remains of the Roman Aqueduct, which connected the acropolis with the springs of Romanos. The aqueduct measured 6.5 km (4.04 mi) from the water cistern to the castle. For the greater part of this distance, the water passed through a man-built underground pipe, over passing valleys and gorges on carefully constructed archways, parts of which still stand, in the area of Aroi.
            • The Roman bridge over the river Milichos, which dates from 114 AD. It is situated in Agyia, in the northernn suburbs of the city, at the junction of Aretha street and the National Road.
            • The Turkish baths' building (16th century), in Boukaouri street, still retain their initial use, and are one of the few Turkish baths surviving in Europe.

            Parks and Squares

            • Georgiou I Square, the central square and the heart of the city. Its was named after king George I. The square's fountains were installed in 1875 at a cost of 70,000 drachmas each, a huge amount for the finances of Greece and Patra at the time. It was and continues to be the center of political and cultural life in the city, hosting all significant activities, political gatherings, rallies, cultural events and, most importantly for some, its carnival.
            • Ethnikis Antistaseos Square (Olga's Square) is known by the name of queen Olga, wife of king George I, and was planted with trees bearing the name "The queen's garden". Today the square is officially known as Ethnikis Antistaseos, but its old name (Olga's Square) is the one in most regular use.
            • Trion Symmahon Square bears the name of the Three Allied Powers who fought for the liberation of Greece ; England, France and Russia. The square features a flower clock and links the Ayiou Nikolaou pedestrian way with the seaside front and the dock of Ayios Nikolaos.
            • Psilalonia Square (Greek: Ψηλαλώνια or formally Πλατεία Υψηλών Αλωνίων) is one of Patras's most popular squares. It is located 1.5 km (0.93 mi) from downtown Patras, next to the city's main north-south street, Gounari Street. It features a fountain, many sidewalks, palm trees and playgrounds. A bronze statue of Germanos of Patras stands on the northern end, while a memorial plaque to people executed during the Axis occupation of Greece stands on the south-western corner. It is surrounded by several shops, restaurants and cafes and a number of modernist buildings. It was completed in the mid to late-19th century, when trees were added, along with neoclassical buildings. After World War II and the Greek Civil War however, and through the 1960s and 1970s, most neoclassical buildings were replaced by eight-storey residential buildings. In the west end, a 15 m (49.21 ft) tall cliff overlooks the Trion Navarchon pedestrian street, and offers a wide vista across the western Gulf of Patras, including the mountains of Aitoloakarnania.
            • The Spinney of Patras (Greek: Δασύλλιο), is situated in a pine-tree-covered hill, which is dubbed "the Gulf of Patras' veranda" due to the panoramic view it offers. The spinney is ideal for recreational walks and jogging, with its specially formed paths and the shade offered by the tall trees. The pine trees that cover the spinney were planted in March 1916 by students of Patras' Primary Schools under the supervision of the Austrian forest specialist Steggel.


            • Apostolos Vakalopoulos, History of Modern Hellenism, the Great Greek Revolution (1821-1829). Vol. 5 The preconditions and the foundations of the revolution (1813-1829). Thessaloniki 1980
            • Thomopoulos, St.N, History of the City of Patras from Antiquity to 1821, Patrai 1952, (ed. Triantafyllou, K.N.)