St. John the Apostle
Feast Day: December 27
Born :(around the time of Jesus) :: Died: (around 100)
St. John was born to Zebedee and Salome. He was a fisherman in Galilee and was called along with his brother St. James to be an apostle. Jesus gave these sons of Zebedee the nickname, "sons of thunder."
St. John was the youngest of the apostles and Jesus loved him dearly. At the Last Supper, John leaned his head on the chest of Jesus to comfort him.
John was also the only apostle who did not desert Jesus during his passion and stood at the foot of the cross. The dying Jesus asked John to care for his Blessed Mother, Mary.
Turning to Mary, he said to John, "Behold your mother." So the rest of her life on earth, the Blessed Mother lived with St. John. He alone had the great honour of assisting and caring for the all-pure Mother of God.
On Easter morning, Mary Magdalene and the other women went with spices to Jesus' tomb to anoint his body. They came running back to the apostles with exciting news. The body of Jesus was gone from the tomb.
Peter and John went to see if this was true. John arrived first but waited for Peter to go in ahead of him. Then he went in and saw the neatly folded linen cloths.
Later that same week, the disciples were fishing on the lake of Tiberias but did not catch any fish. A man standing on the beach asked them to let down their nets on the other side of the boat. When they pulled it up again it was full of large fish.
St. John, immediately knew this was Jesus, and called to Peter, "It is the Lord." With the descent of the Holy Spirit at Pentecost, the apostles were filled with new courage and St. John and St. Peter were thrown into prison for preaching the good news without fear.
After the Ascension, John performed many miracles in the name of Jesus. Hearing him preach, hundreds of people were baptized and became followers of Jesus so St. John founded churches in Asia Minor for the people.
John lived for more than 100 years. He led a life of suffering, preached the Gospel, and became bishop of Ephesus. In the last years of his life, when he could no longer preach, his disciples would carry him to the crowds of Christians. His simple message was, "My dear children, love one another."
St. John died in Ephesus (modern Turkey) around the year 100. A church was built over his tomb and was later converted to a mosque.