Questions about the Holy Apostle Andrew

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The Holy Apostle Andrew is known as the "First Called", because he was the first among the twelve apostles the Lord chose to follow Him.


Simon Peter was the elder brother of Andrew. They were fishermen, in Bethsaida of Galilee, near the sea of Galilee.

"And Jesus, walking by the sea of Galilee, saw two brethren, Simon called Peter, and Andrew his brother, casting a net into the sea: for they were fishers." (Mat 4:18)

"Now Philip was of Bethsaida, the city of Andrew and Peter." (John 1:44)


At first St Andrew followed St John the Baptist, but then, hearing the Forerunner speak of Jesus, he became Jesus' disciple.

"Again the next day after John stood, and two of his disciples; {36} And looking upon Jesus as he walked, he saith, Behold the Lamb of God! {37} And the two disciples heard him speak, and they followed Jesus. {38} Then Jesus turned, and saw them following, and saith unto them, What seek ye? They said unto him, Rabbi, (which is to say, being interpreted, Master,) where dwellest thou? {39} He saith unto them, Come and see. They came and saw where he dwelt, and abode with him that day: for it was about the tenth hour. {40} One of the two which heard John speak, and followed him, was Andrew, Simon Peter's brother." (John 1:35-40)


He told his brother that he had found the Messiah, and brought Peter to Jesus.

"One of the two which heard John speak, and followed him, was Andrew, Simon Peter's brother. {41} He first findeth his own brother Simon, and saith unto him, We have found the Messias, which is, being interpreted, the Christ. {42} And he brought him to Jesus." (John 1:40-42)


After preaching around Byzantium and the Black Sea, St Andrew traveled north, reaching the River Dnieper in the land of Russia. He halted on the shore beneath the hills of Kiev, the future site of the city of Kiev and the great monastery of the Kiev caves. There, he said to his disciples who accompanied him: "Believe me: on these hills the grace of God will shine forth. There will be a great city here, and the Lord will raise many churches in this place and enlighten all of the Russian land with holy baptism." Ascending the hills, he blessed them and planted a cross, foretelling the conversion of the people and land of Russia.


St Andrew had no wife; he was a virgin.


St Andrew healed of a disease of the eyes and then converted Maximilla, the wife of Aegeates, proconsul of the city of Patras in the Peloponnese, for which he was tortured and beaten and finally crucified upside down. From his cross he preached and exhorted the people, converting many to the true Faith. Aegeates, fearing the people, sent servants to take the apostle down from the cross, but they were unable to approach and could not see the saint for the brilliant light which surrounded him as he prayed. When the light dissipated, he surrendered his spirit to the Lord. After Andrew's death, Aegeates was possessed by a demon and died in torment in the midst of the city.

"Most gloriously let us praise the apostle Andrew, the brother of Peter, the first of all the disciples, the beholder and servant of Him Who is the Word, for he enlighteneth the nations and, crucified, met his end as a disciple of the Master." (second Exapostilarion from the service for St. Andrew)


St Andrew is shown in icons as an older man, with long grey hair and beard.


  1. The service for St Andrew is of polyeleos rank, the second highest rank.
  2. In Vespers are read three readings from the epistles of the Apostle Peter.
  3. All apostles are given readings from the epistles


We begin to hasten preparations for the Nativity of our Lord. The theotokia for "Lord I have cried" and the Aposticha are taken from the service for the Forefeast of the Nativity.

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