St Matthias was chosen by the apostles to replace Judas Iscariot.
He was born in the 1st century AD in Judaea and died in 80 AD in Jerusalem, Judaea, or in Colchis (modern-day Georgia).
We celebrate his feast day on May 14 every year in the Catholic Church.
Saint Matthias the Apostle is the Patron Saint of
- Against alcoholism; reformed alcoholics
- Against smallpox
- Diocese of Gary, Indiana
- Diocese of Great Falls-Billings, Montana
|St Matthias, Apostle Biography|
|Date of Birth||1st century AD|
|Place of Birth||Judea|
|Profession||Apostle of Jesus|
|Place of Work||Judea, Cappadocia, Jerusalem and Ethiopia|
|Date of Death||80 AD|
|Place of Death||Jerusalem, Judaea, or in Colchis|
|Feast Day||May 14|
|Patron Saint of||• Against alcoholism; reformed alcoholics
• Against smallpox
• Diocese of Gary, Indiana
• Diocese of Great Falls-Billings, Montana
St Matthias, Apostle Life History
St. Matthias, whose name signifies “gift of God,” was selected by the apostles to take the place of Judas Iscariot, who had betrayed Jesus and died, according to the Acts of the Apostles.
Jesus had already ascended to heaven and did not personally make the appointment. Matthias was one of the 72 disciples sent out by Jesus.
Although Matthias is not named among the followers of Jesus in the three synoptic gospels, Acts of the Apostles records that he had been with Jesus from the time of his baptism by John until his Ascension.
After Jesus’ Ascension, the apostles’ initial task was to find a replacement for Judas. Despite the numerous uncertainties and hazards they faced, they decided to prioritize selecting a twelfth apostle.
The significance of this was that the number twelve held great importance to the Israelites, representing the twelve tribes of Israel.
Therefore, in order for the disciples of Jesus to form the new Israel, they required a twelfth apostle.
Peter’s sole requirement for choosing the new apostle was that he should have been a disciple from the earliest days, just like himself, Andrew, James, and John, who had been present at Jesus’ baptism by John and His Ascension. This was because the new apostle needed to bear witness to the resurrection of Jesus.
St Peter gathered around 120 disciples and suggested that two men should be nominated to replace Judas. Joseph called Barsabas, also known as Justus, and Matthias were chosen by the disciples.
Following a prayer, the disciples cast lots and Matthias was chosen, making him the twelfth apostle.
St Matthias is believed to have spread the gospel in different regions such as Cappadocia, Jerusalem, the shores of the Caspian Sea (in modern-day Turkey), and Ethiopia, as per different accounts.
Some sources state that he met his end by being crucified in Colchis (now in modern-day Georgia), while others claim that he was stoned to death in Jerusalem.
The Roman Calendar first included the feast of Saint Matthias in the 11th century, celebrated on the sixth day before the month of March, which usually falls on 24 February, but 25 February in leap years.
However, in the revised General Roman Calendar of 1969, the feast was moved to 14 May to avoid celebrating it during Lent and instead place it in Eastertide close to the Solemnity of the Ascension, which is when the Acts of the Apostles states that Matthias was chosen to be counted among the Twelve Apostles.
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