1i:~~~~'-1 1~~~ LI-r-: V- :
.i ~ -..:- ~
The Baldwin Library
Being a Series of
Biographics of I tose Saints
for wlicl? Proper Collects,
Epistles, Gospels are appointed
in tle Bookof Common Prayer.
Fpublised uirder tle direction of
tle (ract (onrittee.
Society for Promoting Christian Knowledge
$able of contents
; / ndrew .. .. ....... .5
,, T h om as ..... .. ........ ... 8
,, S te ph en ...... ........... ... 11
,, John the Evangelist ... 14
Conversion of St Paul............ 17
S! Matthias .............. ....... 21
The/Annunciation of TheVirgin Mar 25
S! Mark....... ............ ... 29
,, Philip and S! James .. .3
SBarnabas ............. 37
lativily of St John Baptist............. 41
St Peter 4..........45
S James .................. .. 49
B artholomew ............... 52
,, Matthew ...... ....... 56
Michael and All /Angels... 60
L uk e ...... ......... ....... 64
S Simon and S! Jude ............... 68
All Saints Day .. .......... 71
t. Andrew was a fisherman living by the sea of
S Galilee. He was at first a disciple of St. John
the Baptist, but being very much struck by his teacher's
remark about Jesus, Who was passing by 'Be-
hold the Lamb of God' he followed our Lord
and stayed with Him that day at His dwelling. St.
Andrew's next step was to find his brother, Simon
Peter, and bring him to Jesus (St. John i. 35-42).
About a year after, Jesus walking by the sea of Ga-
lilee, called Simon Peter and Andrew from their usual
work to be 'fishers of men' (St. Matt. iv. 18-19), and
when He chose His twelve Apostles, St Andrew was
one of them (St. Luke vi. 12-14). In the history of
Christ feeding 5,000 men, it is told of St. Andrew, that
he, when others wished the multitudes to go away to
their own homes and buy themselves bread, remem-
bered that a lad there had five barley loaves and two
small fishes: this small quantity Jesus blessed and brake,
and gave to the people so as fully to satisfy them
(St. John vi. 1-14). St. Andrew remained with our Lord
all the time He 'went about doing good', but he is
__ ni rt
mentioned only once more in the new Testament. His
name is among those who were gathered together in
the 'upper room' praying (Acts i. 1-13), and waiting
for the promised gift of the Holy Spirit. Later writers
say that St. Andrew suffered martyrdom about sixty
years afterwards, being tied to a cross in the shape of
the Letter X. This cross, we read, he saluted in a
rapture of devout love to Jesus: on it he hung two
days testifying to the assembled people, and then hav-
ing prayed, he died.
To read of saint after saint and triumph after
triumph might drive us to despair, if we looked to the
saints only, and not in them, and through them to the
King of Saints. But thus looking, any such temptation
vanishes, giving place to unswerving hope. For these
were men of like passions with ourselves: and if they
now seem too far in advance for us ever to overtake
them, what must their own case have appeared who
were called not to follow one another, but immediately
to follow Christ Himself, and who being called at
sundry times and in divers manners, all alike left every-
thing and followed Him.
They climbed the steep ascent of heaven
Through peril, toil, and pain:
0 God, to us may grace be given
To follow in their train.
I_ _II I I ~
t. Thomas, called also Didymus or Twin (St.
John xi. 16), was probably a Galilean. The first
special mention of his name occurs in connection with
the raising of Lazarus from the dead. Jesus told His
disciples, that He must go to Bethany (near Jerusalem)
and 'wake out of sleep' Lazarus whom 'He loved', and
who had just died. At first, the disciples wished Jesus
not to expose Himself again to the fury of the Jews,
but when He persisted, St. Thomas said to hes brother
disciples: 'Let us also go, that we may die with Him,'
(St. John xi. 1-16). After the resurrection of Christ
on Easter-Day, He appeared to the disciples assembled
together. St. Thomas was not with them, and would
not believe the glad tidings. When a week had pas-
sed, Jesus appeared among them once more with
His message 'Peace be unto you', and then turning
to St. Thomas, who was present, bade him by touch
and sight satisfy his doubts. The grateful Apostle
could only say with deep love, 'My Lord and my
God!' (St. John xx. 27-28.) St. Thomas was present
when Jesus appeared to the disciples at the Sea of
Galilee (St. John xxi. 2), and he was with those who
assembled in the 'upper room' (Acts i. 13). It has
been supposed that St. Thomas was martyred in India,
whither he had gone preaching the gospel and foun-
ding a church. His symbol of the builder's rule marks
him as the spiritual builder of the Church in those
St. Thomas doubted, but simultaneously he loved.
Whence it follows that his case was all along hopeful.
If we are spirit-broken by doubts of our own, if
we are half heart-broken by a friend's doubts, let us
beg faith for our friend and for ourself; only still more
urgently let us beg love.
For love is more potent to breed faith than faith
to breed love. Because there is no comparison between
the two: 'God is Love'; and that which God is, must
rank higher, and show itself mightier than aught which
God is not.
Nevertheless, faith also is required of us, and faith
overflows with blessings.
'If thou canst believe, all things are possible to him
that believeth... Lord, I believe; help Thou mine unbelief.'
'Elisha prayed, and said, Lord, I pray Thee, open
his eyes, that he may see. And the Lord opened the
eyes of the young man; and he saw.'
-z^------------;- a .
t. Stephen, as Protomartyr for Christ, takes in a
certain sense, precedence of all other saints what-
soever, be they even Apostles.
He served tables: thus indirectly recalling our Lord's
parable of the Guest bidden to a Feast. As Deacon
he stood (rather than sat down) in the lowest room;
and to him in his lowliness came betimes the gracious
word, 'Friend, go up higher'.
Now and for evermore hath he worship in the
presence of them that sit at meat with him; whether
this be in communion with just men made perfect, or
with members of the Church still militant here on earth.
To St. Stephen, then, we see granted one exclusive
dignity withheld from St. John the beloved, from St. Peter
the chief, from St. Paul the superabundant labourer.
Yet is not his or any other man's gain his fellow's
lack: every one hath his proper gift of God, Whose
ancient promise stands sure to each faithful soul:
'Prove Me now if I will not open you the win-
dows of heaven, and pour you out a blessing, that
there shall not be room enough to receive it.'
Christians whose hands are characteristically never
closed, open them wide at Christmas, and Christmas
Boxes fall due on St. Stephen's Day. First let us
connect our doles with the unapproachable Divine Sa-
viour Who, being rich, for our sakes became poor:
and this done, there will be no harm in connecting
them further with that exalted St. Stephen who for
love of Christ and of souls, was content to minister ar
the necessities of saints in things temporal.
^ 3ot, tot rpansdiet
t. John, probably the youngest of the Apostles -
was the son of the Galilean fisherman Zebedee,
and with St. James, his brother, was called by our
Lord (St. Matthew iv. 21). He was present at the
transfiguration, and at the raising of Jairus' daughter;
he was near his beloved Master in the hour of agony
in Gethsemane; he leaned on His breast at the last
supper; he stayed by His cross on Calvary; he helped
to lay the crucified body in the sepulchre; he took to
his own home the bereaved Virgin Mother. After the
Ascension, he and St. Peter worked awhile together in
Judaea, but later on St. John went into Asia and lived
chiefly at Ephesus, of which city he was the first bishop,
and where he died, after a temporary banishment to
the Isle of Patmos, at an advanced old age.
St. John is known to us as the Divine, the Apostle
and Evangelist, whose doctrine is intended, by God's
blessing, to enlighten the Church. That doctrine is
contained (a) in the Fourth Gospel-of which an old
writer said that while 'St. Matthew wrote for the He-
-r \ ____ _________________-
brews, St. Mark for the Latins, and St. Luke for the
Greeks, the great herald, John, wrote for all' (b) in
three Epistles (or letters) and (c) in the 'Book of the
Revelation', written in exile at Patmos. He is usually
represented as a young man with an eagle by his side,
denoting the high inspiration by which he soared up-
wards to contemplate the divine nature of our Saviour
Jesus Christ; and often with a cup in his hand out
of which issues a serpent, illustrating a tradition that
he drank some poisoned wine without injury.
'Beloved, let us love one another,' says St. John,
Eagle of eagles calling from above:
Words of strong nourishment for life to feed upon,
'Beloved, let us love.'
Voice of an eagle, yea, Voice of the Dove:
If we may love, winter is past and gone
Publish we, praise we, for lo! it is enough.
More ruddy than sunshine that ever yet shone,
Sweetener of the bitter, smoother of the rough,
Highest lesson of all lessons for all to con
'Beloved, let us love'.
t. Paul was born at the city of Tarsus in Cilicia;
he was the son of wealthy and influential Jewish
parents, and was early instructed in literature, art and
science, Tarsus being celebrated for its learning and
riches. He was likewise, in accordance with Jewish
custom, taught the trade of tent-making; it being a
maxim generally accepted that 'He who teacheth not
his son a trade teacheth him to be a thief.' When
still quite young, he was sent by his parents to Je-
rusalem to be brought up by Gamaliel in the study
of the law. Being thus educated in the narrow prin-
ciples of the Pharisees, the strictest and most intolerant
sect of the Jewish religion, it is scarcely to be won-
dered at that he first appears as a ruthless pursuer and
persecutor of the followers of Christ.
A main feature of St. Paul's character was his
marvellous energy; whatever his hand found to do he
did with all his might. In the beginning of his career
this energy was misdirected, but God in his mercy
and wisdom intervened and turned the ungoverned
forces of the future Apostle of the Gentiles into the
right channel. St. Paul was in his own person to be a
remarkable instance of the power of God's mercy and
of His readiness to receive the worst of sinners upon
their repentance. 'He obtained mercy, that Jesus
Christ might show forth first in him all long-suffering
for a pattern to them that should hereafter believe on
Him to life everlasting' (i Tim. i, 16).
The new convert was not slow in .proving the
sincerity of his conversion; he spent his days in lab-
ouring to establish the church of which he had formerly
made havoc, in comforting and consoling the faithful
whom he had haled to prison, exposing himself for
the faith to those dangers and difficulties which he had
endeavoured to bring upon others.
Whereas the other Apostles chose this or that
province as the main sphere of their ministry, St. Paul
over-ran, as it were, the whole Roman empire seldom
staying long in one place; from Jerusalem he went
through Arabia, Asia and Greece, round about to
Illyricum, to Rome and even, it is said, to the utmost
bounds of the western world. The greatest part of his
travels is recorded in the Acts of the Apostles, and as
we read, we are filled with admiration for his wonderful
courage and perseverance. He was discouraged by no
dangers or difficulties; he frequently suffered scourging
and imprisonment, and was brought even to the
confines of death both at sea and on land; neither was
he tired out with his troubles, or the opposition that
was raised against him; for the space of five and thirty
years he was indefatigable in preaching the Gospel,
and in writing Epistles for the confirming of those
churches which he had established; thus persevering in
the good fight of faith till he had finished his course.
He suffered martyrdom at Rome, under Nero, in
the sixty-eighth year of his age.
He is generally represented with a sword in one
hand and a book in the other; the first being symbolical
of his death (he was beheaded), the second of his
Ships was the Apostle 'ordained' in the place of
the traitor Judas. He was one of those 'who
had companies with' the other Apostles 'all the time
that the Lord Jesus went in and out among them';
from the time, that is, when He had been baptised by
St. John the Baptist 'unto the same day that He was
taken up' or ascended (Acts i. 21, 22). It is very
probable that St. Matthias was one of the seventy dis-
ciples. After his election as an Apostle, his name does
not occur again in the New Testament. He is said to
have preached the Gospel in Ethiopia, and there to
have suffered martyrdom by the spear.
The history of his ordination or election is very
interesting. St. Peter stood up in the midst of the
assembled 120 brethren, and explained to them, that,
in consequence of the treachery and death of Judas, it
was necessary that, 'one should be ordained to be a
witness with them of the resurrection of Christ', and
so keep up the number of 'twelve Apostles'. Two of
those present were named as satisfying the require-
~1~11 _I_ ~
ments of St. Peter Joseph called Barsabas and sur-
named Justus, and Matthias. The assembly then knelt
down and prayed that the Lord Jesus, Who knew the
hearts of all men, would shew which of those two He
had chosen, 'that he might take part in the Ministry
and Apostleship.' After prayer, they adopted the solemn
practice of casting lots (Lev. xvi. 8), as a mode of
shewing that they referred the decision to God. Each
of those present wrote the name of Barsabas or Matthias
on a tablet and cast it into an urn; the urn was then
shaken, and the name that came first was the name of
the disciple elected. This was Matthias; the lot fell upon
him, and he was numbered with the eleven Apostles.
Thus did the Lord Jesus Christ provide that His
Church should be then and for ever after ordered
and guided by faithful and true pastors.
But for the apostasy of Judas, St. Matthias must
perforce apparently have occupied a less exalted station:
there, doubtless, he would thankfully have remained,
rather than make his stepping-stone of such a ruin;
for he cannot but have been one who, at least in will,
loved his neighbour as himself. A heavenly temper is
of primary importance, but by flesh and blood not
Thus even Jonah, inspired Prophet as he was, seems
to have grudged Nineveh its uncovenanted overflow of
mercy: presumably on patriotic grounds, yet none the
less with a resentment far removed from the Divine
Whenever our own personal gain depends on a
neighbour's loss, do we, at least in will, steadily and
practically love him as ourself?
If not, how shall we face him, though not to-day
or to-morrow, yet assuredly at the last great Day of
Judgment when all things covered shall be revealed,
and all things hidden shall be made known?
-~ +4~~~9f~+~9+~ i--~; aJ
I --i~-~nh\sr~-. ~8~ I ~*
~I]I nnnul~rinlroa rylhr B1~BBYil~lljin~ bTg
^ (h lnnunciafion of tot gfewb
l!i: Feast of the Annunciation is celebrated in
-"commemoration of the declaration made by the
Angel Gabriel to the Blessed Virgin that she should
be the Mother of our Lord Jesus Christ. At the same
time Gabriel told her that her Son should be great and
should be called the Son of the Highest; that God
should give unto Him the throne of his father David;
that He should reign over the House of Jacob for ever,
and that of His kingdom there should be no end.
This description refers to the prophecy made by
Isaiah concerning Christ, that the government should
be upon His shoulder, and that His Name should be
called, Wonderful, Counsellor, the Mighty God, the
Everlasting Father, the Prince of Peace; of the in-
crease of His kingdom there should be no end, upon
the throne of David, and upon His kingdom, to order
it, and to establish it with judgment and with justice,
from henceforth, even for ever! (Isaiah ix. 6.)
The salutation which preceded this declaration is
worthy of notice. 'Hail thou that art highly favoured,
the Lord is with thee: blessed art thou among women.'
The meaning of this is that the Blessed Virgin was
particularly selected by God to receive the greatest
honour that ever was done to the daugthers of men,
her employment being holy and pious, her body chaste,
and her soul adorned with every virtue, especially
humility, which is of great value in the sight of God.
This is indicated by the manner in which she receives
the message, being troubled in her mind as to what
the meaning of the salutation was, and judging herself
to be unworthy of such an honour and inquiring of
the angel, how the prophecy could be fulfilled, she
being a Virgin.
The answer of Gabriel to her inquiry, declared
the wonderful manner in which his message should be
brought about, viz that the Holy Ghost should come
upon her, and that the power of the Highest should
overshadow her: at the same time he shewed her an
example somewhat similar in her cousin Elisabeth. This
had the effect of producing in her an entire faith in
and obedience to the message sent her, as shewn in
her reply. 'Behold the handmaid of the Lord, be it
unto me according to thy word.'
The joy and gratitude of the Blessed Virgin are
beautifully expressed in the well known canticle, the
_.'"- J-'.... wherein she shows a thankful appreciation
of the-great honour conferred upon her, and which ex-
presses at the same time in so full a manner, her hum-
ility and devotion, as well as the infinite power and
goodness of God, that it is clear that, as she was
highly favoured, so was she also plentifully endued
with grace and had a mind plentifully enriched with
the gifts of the Holy Spirit.
We ought to learn from the Feast of the An-
nunciation, the infinite mercy and goodness of God,
in sending His Son into the world to redeem us from
sin and misery. That all the faculties of our souls,
our reason, our will and our affections ought to be
used to praise His holy Name. That the best way
to obtain God's favour, is to govern all our actions
by a fear of offending Him. That to obtain the bles-
sings of heaven, we must have a strong sense of our
need of them and finally, that even we may advance
ourselves to the rank of being related to Christ, for by
doing the will of the Father, we are esteemed by
Christ as His brethren His sisters and His mother
(Matt. xii. 50).
------r -' '. :- --
S learn but little of the life of St. Mark from
SHoly writ. He was probably of Jewish par-
ents, the number of Hebrew idioms which occur in
his Gospel seeming to point to the conclusion that
HIebrew was his mother tongue. His name, it is true,
is Roman, but it was not uncommon in those days
for a Jew to assume a Roman surname. Witness the
case of St. Paul, who before his conversion is generally
called by his Hebrew name of Saul.
St. Mark is by some supposed to have been con-
verted by St. Peter, whose constant companion and ass-
istant he afterwards became, going with him on many
of his missionary journies, and supplying the place of
amanuensis and interpreter.
By St. Peter he was sent into Egypt, where his
missionary labours were attended with great success,
for not only did he make a great number of converts,
but he succeeded in inspiring them with a portion of
his own enthusiasm, and in persuading them to a most
strict observance of the teaching of our Lord. The
chief centre of his work was at Alexandria of which
place he was the first Bishop. He also extended his
teaching to Marmorica and Pentapolis and parts of
He suffered martyrdom about the year A. D. 68.
He was accused of using magical arts to secure con-
verts, and about Easter time the populace who were celeb-
rating the solemnities of Serapis broke in upon St. Mark
as he was employed in Divineworship; binding his feet
with cords they dragged him through the streets, and
thrust him into prison, where in the night he had the
comfort of a Divine vision. On the next day the tragedy
was renewed and the Saint died in great bodily agony,
but full of hope and thankfulness. Some add that his
body was burned and the bones and ashes entombed
by Christian converts near the place where he used
to preach. His remains are supposed to have been
translated early in the ninth century, from Alexandria
to Venice with great pomp and splendour. He was
adopted as the Patron Saint of Venice, and a rich and
stately church, was erected there to his memory.
St. Mark is the writer of the Gospel which bears
his name. The task was undertaken at the entreaty
of the converts at Rome who wished to preserve in
writing, St. Peter's account of the life and death of our
Lord. It was, doubles, read and corrected by St. Peter
and received the stamp of his authority.
It is to be noted that St. Mark's account of Peter's
denial of Christ is fuller and more substantial than that
of any of the other Evangelists. When we consider
that St. Peter was the source of St. M1.-l:'s information
we realise how impartial must have been the historian
who could thus chronicle the failing of one whom he
loved as a father, and the unflinching truthfulness of his
From the observance of this festival by the church
we learn that a good Christian ought to instruct by his
example as well as his discourse; that when God tries
his servants with extraordinary suffering he supplies them
with proportionable assistance for their support; that
the light of the Gospel though admirably fitted to con-
duct us into the paths of happiness yet will certainly
increase our condemnation if we do not govern our
lives by its maxims; that we ought to be very thankful
to God, for having instructed His Church with the
heavenly doctrine of this Evangelist, and to show our
grateful sense of this valuable treasure by reading his
Gospel frequently, and so firmly believing those thing
which he relates, that we may reap all those advantages
God designed for us in that relation of His Holy Will.
lil~-~-----^------------_I I-_- _-1 ~
',.i Philip lived at Bethsaida, on the sea of Galilee.
,, Jesus 'found him' (St. John i. 43), and called
him to Himself with the words 'follow Me'. Eagerly did
St. Philip tell to his friend Nathanael (St. Bartholomew)
the good news that he (in his turn), had found Him
of Whom Moses in the Law and the Prophets did
write; and he silenced all Nathanael's questioning by
bidding him come with him and see our Lord. We
owe most of our information about St. Philip to the
Gospel of St. John. It was of him perhaps because
it was his care to provide the Twelve with food -
that Jesus asked the question, 'Whence shall we
buy bread that these (the hungry, fainting, crowd)
may eat?' (St. John vi. 5). Marvellously did Christ
answer by a miracle the question that St. Philip could
not. Later on some Greek-speaking pilgrims came
up to Jerusalem for the feast of the Passover: they
desired to 'see Jesus', and they applied to St. Philip,
perhaps led to him by his Greek name. This Apostle,
ever ready to bring men to Christ, as of old he had
brought St. Bartholomew, at once made himself their
guide (St. John xii. 20. etc.). Once more does St. Philip's
name occur in the Gospel history. It was at the Last
Passover. The Apostle, full of sorrow, and perplexed
at his Master's words, made himself the spokesman of
the desire which probably filled the hearts of all the
twelve, and with child-like absence of reserve he asked
'Lord, shew us the Father and it sufficeth us.' Tenderly,
gently, did our Lord rebuke and comfort him, and
through him all Christians. 'Have I been so long time
with you, and yet hast thou not known Me, Philip?
He that hath seen Me hath seen the Father' (St. John
xiv. 8. etc.). After the mention of St. Philip in the
'upper room' all is uncertain about him (Acts. i. 13).
Early writers tell us that he became a missionary in
Asia and died on the cross. May we, following him,
stedfastly walk in the way that leadeth to eternal life.'
The Gospels tell us little specially of St. Philip, and
even less of St. James (the Less). Alike in office and
in grace, their careers, according to tradition, differed
widely. St. Philip, father of a family, endured martyr-
dom in the midst of certain benighted heathen: St. James,
in inviolate celibacy, was done to death at Jerusalem
by his own doubly benighted apostate countrymen.
On their Feast Day they stand before us as it were
hand in hand; 'Behold, how good and joyful a thing
it is, brethren, to dwell t',Weth.-r in unityl'
_ ~ I_
Whatever remains uncertain about them, of two
facts we rest assured: they loved God, and therefore
they cannot but have loved one another.
This double yet indivisible point of excellence is
indisputably true of all saints and of each saint. This
we know of every one, even while of millions we can
ascertain nothing besides.
The world will know enough about us, if it know
this much: and even if the world know it not, it suffices
so long as God knows it.
'~' t. Barnabas was born at Cyprus, of Jewish parents
A,.' of the tribe of Levi, whose ancestors had prob-
ably fled thither in the troublesome times in Judaea
to secure themselves from violence.
His proper name was Joses, a softer termination
familiar with the Greeks for Joseph; he was surnamed
Barnabas (son of consolation) by the apostles, probably
in reference to the fact that he had sold the whole of
his estate for the relief of the poorer Christians. Like
St. Paul, he was a pupil of Gamaliel, and it is possible
that the foundation of their subsequent friendship may
have been laid at this time. The particulars of his
conversion are not known but he is supposed to have
been one of the seventy disciples chosen by our Saviour.
He was the first to vindicate the sincerity of St. Paul's
conversion when the Christians at Jerusalem were in-
clined to regard it as a feint on the part of the enemy
to ensnare their confidence.
The scene of his first missionary labours was at
Antioch where he added many to the church, working
part of the time in conjunction with St. Paul.
With St. Paul he was designated by the Holy
Ghost to become the bearer of the Gospel tidings to-
the Gentile world and for three years they travelled
through Asia Minor preaching the Gospel, with various
success, in the places through which they passed.
It is difficult to enter into the merits of the dis-
pute between St. Paul and St. Barnabas. It is probable
that St. Paul was right in refusing the company of
St. Mark. He was seeing more and more clearly
every day that his mission called him to go far and
wide and that it would require earnest courage and
possible renunciation of all the ties of life. Mark him-
self, afterwards learned this and was restored to fellow-
ship. St. Barnabas may have feared that the discipline
was too severe for his young kinsman and may have
been unwilling to quench the smoking flax.
We hear but little of Barnabas after his separation
from the Great Apostle. Some writers say that he
went into Italy and preached the Gospel at Rome, and
founded a Church at Milan, but it seems more probable
that he spent the remainder of his life at Cyprus engaged
in work among his own countrymen, the Jews.
He suffered martyrdom at Salamis in the island
of Cyprus, being set upon by the Jews as he was dis-
puting in the synagogue and stoned to death after en-
_ I __~
during exquisite tortures. He is generally represented
with stones in his hand.
We hear that he was a man of a comely and
venerable aspect, as indeed might be inferred from the
fact that he was taken by the men of Lystra for the
The life of St. Barnabas may teach us to despise:
ease, and even life itself, when we have any happy oppor-
tunity of propagating Christian knowledge, and to rejoice.
in any success of that nature; to compassionate the
infirmities of our brethren whose zeal moves in a lower
sphere; to be ready to contribute to the relief of our
fellow Christians, and when their necessities are great
and pressing to deny ourselves some luxury rather
than let them be oppressed with want; to remember
what belief and practice is implied in the venerable name:
of a Christian and to depart from all iniquity lest we-
forfeit our interest in that faith; to have a greater
regard to the rule and measure of our duty than to
the example of even the best men, for even by this
we ought not to allow ourselves to be persuaded to do>
anything which we think to be evil.
-4- -ti I_
ft 3ohn, toe (gaphfot
'1lj is he of whom it is written, Behold I send
., i\ly messenger before Thy face, which shall
prepare Thy way before Thee. Verily I say unto
you, among them that are born of women there
hath not risen a greater than John the Baptist: Not-
withstanding he that is least in the '!in 1 of heaven
is greater than he.'
These are the words used by our Blessed Lord in
speaking of his fore-runner.
The words 'there hath not risen a greater' must
not be taken in the widest sense; they refer only to
St. Johns positin anzd privilege. In some things Abra-
ham, Moses, Elijah, and Isaiah were greater than John
the Baptist; but no one of them was chosen to be the
immediate Herald of the Saviour. Here was John's
greatness. He was the 'friend of the Bridegroom'
(John iii. 29).
Again, in reading the next few words we must re-
member that 'the kingdom of heaven is' constantly used
by our Lord to mean His heavenly kingdom set up
r"r ct :7,' 13
I ,/I :-~ I
t~: I '
"' r --1
here on earth that is, the Church. Therefore, what
our Lord says is, that the least member of His Church
is greater than John the Baptist. That is the least in
position and privilege, such as little children and the
uninstructed. These are very subjects of that kingdom,
which he proclaimed to be 'at hand'. They are born
anew into God's own Family.
John the Baptist was the 'Friend of the Bride-
groom'; the Church is the Bride. He was the
Fore-runner: Christians are the members of Christ.
Again, in respect of knowledge the least member of
Christ's Church is more blest than John the Baptist.
Dying before his Saviour, he knew less of the love and
wonders of the Redemption than any little child may
The history of St. John the Baptist teaches us that
true greatness consists in the contempt of the world,
and that in the midst of worldly enjoyments we can
never be really disciples of Christ without poverty of
spirit. It shows us that the best. means to preserve
our innocence is to retire as much as may be from
the occasions and temptations of evil; to set a strict
guard upon our senses and by frequent mortification to
keep our bodies in subjection to our minds.
From his fate we learn that the true worth of
men ought not to be measured by their outward cir-
cumstances in this world since the greatest of prophets
ui.lCer.. the indignities of a prison and fell by the hands
of a common executioner.
St. John is generally represented with a staff in
one hand and a dish or charger in the other.
imon Peter, the brother of St. Andrew, was called
L1 with him by our Lord, and became one of the
most devoted and favoured of the disciples (St. Matt.
iv. 18, 19). He was present at all the leading events
in the life of our Saviour; and it was from his lips that
there came the confession of our Lord, revealed unto
him by the Father in heaven (St. Matt. xvi. 15-17)
'Thou art the Christ, the Son of the living God.' He
also it is who has taught men to cry, as he cried, when
the waves are ready to swallow them up and their
faith is failing, 'Lord save me!' (St. Matt. xiv. 30). He
it is who has taught us all to give ourselves humbly
and entirely, 'not the feet only, but the hands and
the head' into the purifying hands of Christ, that
we also may have 'part with Him' (St. John xiii. 3-10).
Yet was it this same Apostle, so loving and so beloved,
who denied his Mi-,r' in the difficult hour of trial
(St. Mark xiv. 66-72). Bitterly he repented then and
through the whole of his after-life! and freely was he
forgiven: for Christ gave His lambs into his hands
--C-U~ r -
(St. John xxi. 15-17) 'commanding him earnestly to
feed His flock.' On the first Whitsun-Day, when the
Holy Ghost the Comforter descended upon the assem-
bled Apostles, St. Peter preached so eloquently that
many thousand people were converted. The Acts of
the Apostles tell us that he was the Apostle by whom
Cornelius, and so the Gentiles as well as the Jews,
were admitted into the fellowship of Christ's religion
(Acts x). By this means the Church of Christ became
'Catholic' or universal, embracing not one race or family,
but the whole world. The last mention of St. Peter
in the Acts is in connection with the beautiful story of
his deliverance from prison by an Angel (Acts xii. 1-17).
The Epistles of St. Peter are eloquent in enforcing the
practical and spiritual duties of the Christian life. The
early Church writers speak of him as having been mar-
tyred at Rome (see St. John xxi. 18-19) and in early
paintings he is usually represented as holding the 'Keys
of the Kingdom of Heaven' (St. Matt. xvi. 19).
'Lovest thou Me more than these? ... Lovest thou
Me? Lovest thou Me? .' spake to His Apostle
the Lord God, the Wise Master, the injured Friend.
'Peter was grieved And he said unto Him, Lord,
Thou knowest all things; Thou knowest that I love Thee.'
But if St. Peter knew it, much more Christ. Even
throughout the threefold denial, while, it may be, for
the moment the fallen saint himself knew it not; yet
He who was greater than his heart and knew all things,
still knew it.
Then Christ 'looked' in love, and Peter went out
and wept bitterly. Now Christ questioned in love, and
Peter was grieved.
These grievous dealings were the faithful wounds
of a friend who loveth at all times: for if the servant
loved his Lord, much more that Lord His servant.
Whatever may appear disputable about St. Peter,
his love is indisputable. If other branches of study
suitable to his Festival are too difficult for us, let us
contentedly study love.
But which love, the lesser or the greater? St. Peter
himself could by no means love God, except as having
been first loved by God.
We shall love St. Peter and all other saints well,
when we love our Lord Jesus better still. 'Love all
for Jesus, but Jesus for Himself, writes a master in
the science of love.
And whatever may be doubtful, this remains certain:
every man who loves God a little, is loved by Him
much: every man who loves God much, is still loved
by Him more.
O-------- M O
i. 3ame g43 4Brt.
Ships Apostle, the son of Zebedee, and probably
.. the elder brother of St. John, was a fisher-
man on the Sea of Galilee. Called at the same
time as his brother (St. Matt. iv. 21-22) he became
one of the most highly favoured Apostles of Christ.
Together with St. Peter and St. John, he was present
at the Transfiguration, at the raising of Jairus' daugh-
ter, and in the garden of Gethsemane. He was one
of those who joined in the question which drew from
Christ the prophecy of the destruction of the temple of
Jerusalem and of His own future coming (St. Mark xiii.).
What became of St. James after the Ascension we
cannot know clearly. It is generally supposed that he
spent some years in Jerusalem together with other
of the Apostles in accordance with our Lord's desire.
Afterwards it is said that he visited Spain (and others
add Britain and Ireland) where he founded churches
and appointed others to complete what he had begun.
It was his privilege to be the first of the Apostles
to join his Ascended Lord in the 'place prepared'
(S. John xiv. 2). He died a martyr's death. 'Herod the
King' (the grandson of Herod the Great, the author of
the massacre of the innocent children at Bethlehem.
S. Matthew ii, 16-18) 'killed James, the brother of
John with the sword' (Acts xii. 2). It is a beautiful
tradition connected with his death, that one of those
who dragged him along was so touched by the Apostle's
gentleness and goodness that he declared himself a
Christian and was beheaded with S. James. After death
his body is said to have been taken back to Spain,
where, as is confidently affirmed, it rests to this day.
At any rate, he is now the patron saint of that country.
In pictures this Apostle is usually represented with
the staff, had and bag of a pilgrim, in allusion to his
missionary wanderings; he is also occasionally made to
carry a sword in token of the manner of his death.
The first of these emblems may serve to recall to us
our life as a 'happy band of pilgrims' here if we are
obedient without delay unto the calling of Jesus Christ,
and follow Him' as did St. James.
@at (yoCome .
Sehold, an Israelite indeed in whom there is no
guile.' This is the character of Bartholomew
(or Nathanael as he was otherwise called), as de-
scribed by our Blessed Lord Himself. The simplicity
and openess of his nature is well shown by the readi-
ness with which he yields up his prejudices when once
satisfied that he sees before him the long-expected
The meaning of the name Bartholomew is not quite
certain. Some think it is merely Son of Tolmai; others
that it means son or scholar of the Tholmeans, an an-
cient society among the Jews.
St. Bartholomew is said to have penetrated as far
as India in his missionary labours, and to have left
behind him a copy of St. Matthew's Gospel in Hebrew,
which was discovered some centuries later by Pantaenus,
a zealous and learned preacher of the Gospel, and was
preserved as an invaluable treasure by the descendants
of St. Bartholomew's converts.
He afterwards returned to the more western and
northern parts of Asia, and laboured for some time in
Phrygia in company with St. Philip. He narrowly
escaped sharing the martyrdom of that saint at Hiera-
polis for having been actually bound upon a cross he
was only saved by a sudden revulsion of feeling among
the populace. He was released and dismissed but un-
fortunately too late to save his friend and co-worker
At Albanopolis, whither he moved not long after-
wards, he preached with great success and made
many converts thereby rousing the indignation of the
governor who caused him to be put to death in a most
barbarous way. It is generally believed that he was
first flayed alive, and then crucified with his head down-
wards. Be that as it may, his sufferings were peculiarly
terrible and he bore them with unshaken constancy;
and we read that to the last moment he comforted
and exhorted his converts.
From the observance of this festival we learn that
a mind free from prejudice is the best preparative for
the reception of truth and that true faith does not re-
quire 'such self evident arguments as force an assent,
but rather such as leave room for the praise and re-
ward of believing.'
True zeal stops at no difficulties and is frightened
by no dangers but parts with life cheerfully whenever
the providence of God makes it a duty.
St. Bartholomew is generally represented with a
knife in one hand in reference to the manner of his death.
He bore an agony whereof the name
Hath turned his fellows pale:
But what if God should call us to the same,
Should call, and we should fail?
Nor earth nor sea could swallow up our shame,
Nor darkness draw a veil:
For he endured that agony whose name
Hath made his fellows quail.
bR nrthula m~n~
t. Matthew the Evangelist though a Hebrew of the
Hebrews, held office under the Roman govern-
ment. He was a publican or toll-gatherer a post
much sought after by the Romans, as being one of
great power and credit not ordinarily conferred on any
but Roman knights, but in very bad report among
the Jews. Wherever this class is referred to in the
Gospels it is almost invariably bracketed with 'sinners'.
The publicans were frequently guilty of extortion, and
they represented in its most disagreeable form that
foreign rule which was so galling to the Jewish spirit.
It was St. Matthew's duty to collect the duty on all
merchandise coming by the Sea of Galilee and the tax
paid by passengers.
St. Matthew's immediate compliance with our Sa-
viour's call seems all the more meritorious when we
consider that he gave up in a moment an assured
position, and great prospects of future wealth. It is.
i..l:-tcI: of him that after his call he denied himself not:
merely the pleasures of life, but its conveniences also,
his common diet consisting for the most part of herbs
and roots, seeds and berries.
For eight years after our Lord's ascension St. Mat-
thew went up and down through Judaea endeavouring
to convert his brethren the Jews to te faith of Christ.
After this time he extended his labours to the Gentile
world and is generally supposed to have chosen Ethiopia
as the field of his missionary efforts. He is thought
to have suffered martyrdom in that country, though in
what manner, time or place is not certain.
He wrote his Gospel while still in Palestine at the
entreaty of the Jewish converts. It was first written
in Hebrew, being designed principally for the use of
his own countrymen. It was quickly translated into
Greek and this version has been received by the Church
The observance of this Festival teaches us that
there is mercy for the worst of sinners if they forsake
their evil ways and become obedient to that call which
their own consciences and the exhortations of God's
ministers so frequently sound in their ears. True re-
pentance consists in such a change of the heart as
produces actions which are agreeable to God and
avoids those whereby we have formerly offended Him.
Poverty and want should be cheerfully embraced
when they lie in the path of duty, and it may be
sometimes advisable to punish our past extravagance
__ ___ I___~_
by giving up the ordinary conveniences and accomo-
dations of life.
If we would enter into the true spirit of this
Festival we should imitate that humility and contempt
of riches which were so remarkable in this blessed
Apostle, we should thus keep our minds free from
covetousness and raise them above cares the of the
world which are the most dangerous enemies to our
~ n-l.i Holy Scripture we learn that S. Michael was
n Archangel, who presided over the Jewish
nation (Dan. x. I3), as other Archangels did over the
Gentile world; that he had under his command an
army of Angels, and that he and his Angels contended
with 'the dragon' or Satan, and disputed about the
body of Moses (Jude 9).
Some great authors take this latter passage to refer
to the contest that happened at Rome, between S. Peter
and Simon Magus, when the Apostle by the efficacy of
his prayers, entirely prevailed against the arts of the
magician; others understand by it, those violent per-
secutions under which the Early Church laboured for
three centuries, but which happily ceased when the
powers of the world became Christian. It is 'however'
generally agreed that it denotes some eminent victory
of the Church, gained by the aid of these ministering
spirits, over the devil and his bad angels who had set
themselves to destroy it.
Z ~ 3~ ~-4-
d1 'k 'I
St ~j~Lrhdd~j anD 311t +I~I
The expulsion of Lucifer and his rebellious host
from heaven seems to be referred to in connection
with S. Michael; and it seems most natural that God.
should make use of His heavenly host to drive front
His celestial mansions those who had made themselves
the objects of His righteous indignation. And upon
this account it may be thought that the prince of those
Angels who fought against Satan obtained the name
of Michael which in the Hebrew signifies 'who is like
God' in that they suppressed the arrogance of
Lucifer, who endeavoured to make himself in some
measure equal to God.
It is particularly observable in S. Michael's contest
with the devil that notwithstanding the fact that he
might have justly said a great deal of evil about him,.
yet he used no reproachful words, or bitterness, or
execrations against him, but simply said 'The Lord
rebuke thee' (Jude 9). This should make all men
ashamed and afraid, particularly in controversy of
religion, to use abusive and injurious reflections, since
such violent language ill becomes their characters as-
With regard to Angels, the current opinion of
the Christian world is, that they are pure spirits, with
nothing material or corporeal belonging to them;
and that their ministry is to declare Christ's Will to,
His Church; to guard and defend us from outward
dangers and the fury of evil spirits, sometimes, by
forewarning us of the approach of danger by some ex-
ternal sign or unaccountable impression of our minds,
or by diverting the evil intentions of our enemies from
us. And when we are beset by evil spirits, they either
assist us in our conflicts with them, or put them to
flight, when we can no longer withstand them.
. 1 1 0
*/, 7 7 --~ -' I A- 4
t. Luke, was born at Antioch, the capital of
Syria, a place famous for its trade, and learning
and above all renowned for being the first place where
the disciples of Christ were called Christians. S. Luke
was a physician by profession, and is spoken of in
Scripture, as 'Luke, the beloved physician'. He was
also celebrated as a painter.
There is some doubt as to when he received his
call to Christ, but it seems probable that he was con-
verted by S. Paul at Antioch. After his conversion,
he became an inseparable companion and fellow-labourer
of S. Paul in the ministry of the Gospel, especially
after the latter went into Macedonia. He endeared him-
self to S. Paul in various ways: by attending him in
all his dangers; by being present with him in his several
arraignments at Jerusalem; by accompanying him in his
hazardous voyage to Rome, where he ministered to
him in many ways, and carried the Apostle's messages
to those Churches, where he had planted Christianity.
After leaving Rome, he returned to the East and trav-
elled into Egypt and Libya, where he made many
converts to Christianity and became bishop of Thebais.
His martyrdom is said to have taken place in Greece,
where, after he had long preached the Gospel success-
fully, he was seized by a party of infidels and hanged
upon an olive tree in his eightieth year.
The writings which he left behind him are his Gospel
and the Acts of the Apostles both dedicated to Theo-
philus. His Gospel is supposed to have been written
during his travels with S. Paul in Achaia, and he is
generally supposed to have made use of his help when
composing it. Besides this advantage, we are assured by
the Evangelist himself, that he derived his intelligence
from those who from the beginning had been eye-
witnesses of the facts.
The Acts of the Apostles is supposed to have
been written at Rome, at the end of S. Paul's two
years imprisonment which forms the conclusion of it.
In this history he relates, not only the actions, but the
chief sufferings of the Apostles, especially of S. Paul
ab out whom St. Luke would be able to give the best
account, having been his constant companion.
The style of St. Luke's writings is especially to be
observed for its clearness, perspicuity, elegance and accu-
racy; all of which shews how great a share he had in
the native genius of Antioch, the place of his birth. He
(-n _______- _-
is an excellent specimen of the true historian, being faith-
ful in relating facts and elegant in his style of writing.
From the observation of this festival we may learn
to rejoice in those good tidings published to the world
by this Evangelist, and to be exact and faithful in
our relation of matters of fact without favouring parties
t. Simon is sometimes called the Canaanite, as he
was supposed by some to have been born at
Cana in Galilee. In other places he is called Simon Ze-
lotes (or the Zelot), indicating his ardent and enthusiastic
temperament. After our Lord's Passion, S. Simon con-
tinued at Jerusalem with the other Apostles, joining in
worship and communion with them, and did not leave
that city till after the feast of Pentecost, when they
were all furnished with the gifts of the Holy Ghost in
order to exercise their ministry in all parts of the
world. His sphere of labour is uncertain, some saying
that he went into Egypt, Cyrene and Africa, while
others maintain that he passed over into Britain, where,
after having converted many and suffered much persecution,
he was crucified by the heathen.
St. Jude was of the family of our Lord, being
brother to S. James the Less. It is uncertain when he
was called to be an Apostle, nothing appearing about
him until we find his name in the list of the Apostles,
but from that time he became a constant attendant
St Su n Lill Stau
of Christ. He is also known by two other names, viz.
Thaddeus and Lebbeus. These names are given him
partly to distinguish him from Judas the traitor, and
partly as a commendation of his wisdom and zeal; for
according to S. Jerome, Lebbeus denotes prudence and
understanding, and Thaddeus signifies a person zealous
in praising God.
S. Jude is supposed to have preached in Judaea
and Galilee, and from thence to have gone through
Samaria into Idumea, and to the cities of Arabia,
Syria and Mesopotamia. He is then said to have
travelled into Persia, where after great success in the
labours of his ministry, he was cruelly put to death
for openly reproving the superstitious rites of the
He wrote but one Epistle, inscribed to all Christians
at large. He exhorts them to stand manfully by the
defence of the 'faith once delivered unto the Saints'
and to oppose false teachers, who labour so much to
corrupt it. But because true Christian charity, though
zealous, is without bitterness and hatred, he exhorts
all Christians to endeavour by all gentle means to save
them; and .to pull them out of the fire into which their
folly has cast them.
''-p' sry'?' ^^
n the early days of Christianity the word 'Saint'
was applied to all believers; this is plain from
the way in which the word is used by S. Luke and
S. Paul in Acts ix. 13 and Rom xvi. 15. The word
afterwards came to apply only to those who emin-
ently excelled in Christian virtue, while now the word
generally signifies those, 'dead in Christ' who have
become a part of the Church triumphant. These,
however, are not the only saints who exist in our
knowledge, as there are many persons in the great
Church mzlitant who may be so denominated; such as
not only believe the doctrines of the Christian religion,
but conform their lives to the precepts of it: such as
not only have a holy -faith, but are purified thereby,
and whose actions are pervaded by a perpetual re-
membrance of God and another world, who are con-
stant and uniform in the discharge of their several
duties, and who abstain from all kinds of evil, 'per-
fecting holiness in the fear of God'. The Church had
several objects in view in instituting this festival:
i4 ;Iil ~
(i) To honour God in His saints; it being through the
aid of His grace that they were able.to perform His
Will in this life, and through His bounty that their efforts
are crowned with eternal happiness in the life hereafter.
(2) To encourage us, here below, to run the race which
is set before us with patience, seeing that we are com-
passed about with so great 'a cloud of witnesses'. (3) To
instil in us greater firmness and resolution of mind, by
placing before us the examples of holy men who in
their respective ages have given remarkable testimony
of their faith in God, and constant adherence to His
truth. In this life we cannot conceive the happiness
which God hath prepared for them that love Him for
'it doth not yet appear what we shall be' (i. John iii, 2)
but Scripture in various places assures as that God
will reward those : that diligently seek Him, not
according to our narrow and limited conceptions of
happiness but according to 'the exceeding greatness
of His power and goodness.' So that God, having
promised to make us happy in the next world, we
have every imaginable reason for putting our whole
trust and confidence in Him as to the way and manner
of accomplishing this. The wisdom of God is some-
times pleased to condescend to our petty powers of
comprehension and to reveal his sublime rewards to
us, by such things as we are most apt to value and
admire; and, therefore, they are represented in some
places under the metaphor of a kingdom, a crown and
a treasure; our rewardhereafter being expressly called
the 'kingdom of the Father', 'a crown of life', 'a crown of
righteousness', 'a crown of glory', 'a treasure in heaven',
though the greatest kingdoms and treasures of this
world bear no proportion to the least degree of heav-
enly glory. But the excellence of this happiness is
more particularly set forth to us by a likeness to Him,
and by 'being with Christ'. All of these statements imply
that we shall in the next world live free from sin, the great
torment and affliction of devout souls in this life; that
we shall be exempted from all those evils and miseries
which are the consequences of it, and which attend us
throughout this earthly pilgrimage. Then not only
sin and sorrow shall cease to be, but we shall enter
upon the possession of all those pleasures which we
are made capable of enjoying: for when the spirits of
just men are made perfect, there shall be nothing to
hinder the constant in11,.. 1C:~ of infinite goodness; so
that our understandings shall be entertained with the
knowledge of God, the most perfect and excellent Being,
the Source and Fountain of all truth; and our wills
vigorously employed in choosing and embracing the
most desirable good things, and our affections fixed
upon the most delightful objects, for our minds being
then enlarged to their utmost capacity we shall have
a more perfect, a more certain and a clearer know-
ledge than we can attain to in this life; and from the
sight of His glory, the love of His goodness and the
admiration of all His excellence, we shall be trans-
formed into His likeness, both in'the purity and the spirit-
uality of our souls; whence must arise infinite pleasure
and satisfaction. The everlasting happiness attained by
the Saint sis likewise attainable by us, for the example
of the saints is specially fitted for our imitation. For
since they were mere men clothed with flesh and
blood, and with an imperfect nature liable to sin as
well as we, and who once strove with the same un-
ruly affections and were once exposed to the same
difficulties and temptations as we now are surrounded
with, we should also remember that we have the same
holy precepts to guide us, the same grace to assist
us, the same promises to encourage us, and the same
Holy Table to resort to for spiritual nourishment. So
that what was attainable by them, may be acquired by
us, if we are not wanting to ourselves.