+ + +

Saint Joseph
Joseph is the husband of Mary, the mother of Jesus of Nazareth in stories told in the Christian Bible's New Testament.

Joseph and Mary are introduced in the books of Luke (chapters 1 through 3) and Matthew (chapters 1 and 2) as an engaged couple living in the Galilean town of Nazareth. Mary becomes pregnant supernaturally through the work of God's spirit -- a development explained to her by the angel Gabriel but not to Joseph. "Unwilling to expose her to public disgrace," Joseph considers quietly breaking the engagement but then heeds instructions he receives in a dream to go through with the marriage and name the child Jesus. Joseph and Mary go to Bethlehem for the birth, flee to Egypt with the baby during a slaughter of infants ordered by Herod, and later return with the boy to Nazareth. Both parents are mentioned in the Bible's brief childhood descriptions of Jesus, but little else is said of Joseph. He is said to be a descendant of David and a carpenter. His death is not recorded, and Mary is the only parent named in accounts of Jesus' adult ministry.

Extra credit: Another Joseph, shared by Judaism and Christianity, appears in the Hebrew Bible (the Christian "Old Testament"). This son of Jacob is the subject of a long story in Genesis (chapters 37-50), filled with fratricidal and international intrigue, dream interpretation, and a famous colorful coat or robe... The New Testament genealogies of Jesus and Joseph (Matthew 1:17 and Luke 3:23-38) trace their male ancestors not only back to David, but also to, among others, Jacob, Isaac and Abraham -- and, in Luke, all the way to the first human, Adam... In an odd modern ritual of unknown origin, some people trying to sell a house will bury a miniature statue of Joseph on their property in hopes of improving chances of a sale.

Troparion of St Joseph: Tone 2

O Joseph, proclaim to David, the ancestor of Christ our God the great miracles you have witnessed. You have seen the virgin with a Child, given praise with the Shepherd, adored with the wise men, and the Angel of the Lord has appeared to you. Intercede with Christ God that he may save our souls.

+ + +


+ + +

Date: 9th October
Commemoration of the Holy Apostle James, son of Alphaeus, of our Holy Father Andronicos and his wife Athanasia.

According to the opinion of some Oriental Church Fathers of Saint Epiphanios of Cyprus and Saint Gregory of Nyssa in particular, the Apostle James, the son of Alpheus, was distinct from James, the brother of the Lord, as he is commemorated on a different date.

The brother of John the Evangelist, James was called at the same time that John was the by the Lord and, like him, was a witness of the Transfiguration. Jesus called them both "Boanerges", or "Sons of Thunder." James was the first among the Apostles to shed his blood in witness of Christ in the city of Jerusalem. He is surnamed James the Greater to distinguish him from James the Less, the "brother of the Lord" and first Bishop of Jerusalem.

According to tradition, Saint Andronicos was a native of Antioch, Syria. After having led an ascetic life in company with his wife, Saint Athanasia, he died in Egypt at an old age in the Fifth century.

Class of Feast: 4
Troparion of James: Tone 3

O holy apostle James, intercede with the Merciful God, that he may grant our souls the forgiveness of sins.

Class of Feast: 4
Troparion of Andronicos: Tone 1

You appeared as a citizen of the wilderness, an angel in the flesh and a wonder-worker, O God-inspired father Andronicos. By fasting, vigils, and prayer, you received heavenly gifts. You cure the sick and the souls of those who run to you in faith. Glory to him who gave you this power! Glory to him who crowned you! Glory to him who through you performs healings for all.

+ + +

Return to Top