The universal Church honors our patron saints, Peter and Paul, on Saturday. Each year on June 29th the happy occasion of the Feast of Saints Peter and Paul is celebrated. As early as the fourth century a feast was celebrated in memory of Sts. Peter and Paul on the same day, although the day was not the same in the East as in Rome. In the East, the Syrian Martyrology of the end of the fourth century gives us a sense in the way that they celebrated the Feast of Saints Peter and Paul. In their catalogue of saints from Asia Minor the following feasts take place after Christmas: Saint Stephen; Saints James and John; and SaintsPeter and Paul. So, Saints Peter and Paul’s Feast day was celebrated immediately after Christmas in the East! Likewise, through St. Gregory of Nyssa we are also informed that these feasts of the Apostles and St. Stephen follow immediately after Christmas. The Armenians celebrated the feast also on 27 Dec.; the Nestorians on the second Friday after the Epiphany. It is evident that December 27th or 28th was arbitrarily selected sinceno tradition concerning the date of the saints’ death is knownwith certainty. The chief feast of Saints Peter and Paul was kept in Rome on 29 June as early as the third or fourth century.

Our patrons have enjoyed honor throughout the world from the earliest times. These early apostles create the harmony of authority (given through Saint Peter) with the beauty of eloquent preaching (given through Saint Paul).

-Fr. Thuerauf