Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Feast of Saint Bartholomew, Apostle

Today we celebrate the Feast of Saint Bartholomew, Apostle.  Readings for today are found here.

Per Wikipedia:
Bartholomew was one of the Twelve Apostles of Jesus, and is usually identified as Nathaniel (alternate spelling: Nathanael) (mentioned in the first chapter of John's Gospel). He was introduced to Christ through St. Philip, another of the twelve apostles as per (John 1:43-51), where the name Nathaniel first appears. He is also mentioned as “Nathaniel of Cana in Galilee” in (John 21:2). The name Nathaniel is the one used for him in St. John’s Gospel. The relationship between St. Philip and Nathaniel is noted as per John 1:43-51. 
I have friends who named their son Nathanael.  What a wonderful name! 

The Catholic Encyclopedia says of his death:
The manner of his death, said to have occurred at Albanopolis in Armenia, is equally uncertain; according to some, he was beheaded, according to others, flayed alive and crucified, head downward, by order of Astyages, for having converted his brother, Polymius, King of Armenia. On account of this latter legend, he is often represented in art (e.g. in Michelangelo's Last Judgment) as flayed and holding in his hand his own skin.
Some people will contend that the resurrection of Jesus was just a lie the apostles made up.  Of the many arguments against that theory, one notes how many of the apostles were killed defending this supposed "lie."  How long do you think you'd lie about something if you were being flayed alive?

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