The Synaxis of the Holy Twelve Apostles
The Apostle Onesimus was originally a servant of the Apostle Philemon, who was a man of love and treated his servants with kindness.
Peter, the teacher of the apostles; Paul, who is known to the world, and who partakes with the powers above.
The fast of the Holy Apostles is dated back to early years of the Church. The first evidence of this fast is found in the writings of Saint Athanasius the Great (+373 AD).
In the lists of the Twelve disciples who are recorded in the New Testament, the name Matthew is mentioned. He calls himself this in the list of disciples he quotes in his Gospel (Matth. 10, 3), and also in the narrative of his call to the role of apostle.
It became clear through unlearned men that the cross was persuasive; in fact, it persuaded the whole world. Their discourse was not of unimportant matters but of God and true religion, of the Gospel way of life and future judgment, and yet it turned ordinary, uneducated men into philosophers. See how the foolishness of God is wiser than people, and his weakness stronger than people!
St. Peter, the fervent follower of Jesus Christ, for the profound confession of His Divinity: “Thou art the Christ, the Son of the Living God,” was deemed worthy by the Savior to hear in answer, “Blessed art thou, Simon … I tell thee, that thou art Peter [Petrus], and on this stone [petra] I build My Church” (Mt.16:16-18). On “this stone” [petra], is on that which thou sayest: “Thou art the Christ, the Son of the Living God” it is on this thy confession I build My Church.
Peter was the son of Jonah and the brother of Andrew, the First-called. He was of the Tribe of Simeon from the town of Bethsaida. He was a fisherman and, at first, was called Simon but the Lord was pleased to call him Cephas or Peter: “And he brought him to Jesus. And when Jesus beheld him, He said, You are Simon the son of Jonah: you shall be called Cephas, which is by interpretation, a rock” (St. John 1:42).
The Apostle Timothy was a disciple of the Apostle Paul. He was born in Lystra of Lycaonia of a Greek father and Judean mother. Very early on his father departed this temporary life and Saint Timothy grew up with his mother Eunice and his grandmother Loida, who raised him with the pure milk of faith and taught him from his childhood to pray and study the word of God. When the Apostle Paul passed through Lystra he acknowledged the spiritual gifts of the young Timothy and saw him as a worthy missionary worker.
This Apostle was from Bethsaida of Galilee, and was the son of Zebedee and Salome, and the brother of James the elder. First a fisherman by trade, he became an Apostle and the beloved Disciple of Christ. Only he of all the Disciples followed Him even to the Cross, and was entrusted with the care of our Saviour’s Mother, as it were another son to her, and a brother of Christ the Teacher. After this, he preached throughout Asia Minor, especially in Ephesus.