Happy Third Day of Christmas
Patron Saints Index: Saint John the Apostle: "The only one of the Twelve not to forsake the Savior in the hour of His Passion, standing at the foot of the cross. Made guardian of Our Lady by Jesus, he took her into his home. Upon hearing of the Resurrection, he was the first to reach the tomb; when he met the risen Lord at the lake of Tiberias, he was the first to recognize Him. "
I've always had a soft spot for St. John too. The church I grew up in was St. John's. I was married there as was my mother and sister.
My grandmother was the church secretary and my grandfather helped there as an usher and with the fish fry.
St. John is also the patron for my current diocese, the Diocese of Clevland
I love that St. John was the only apostle that was not martyred, although he did have his fair share of trials. This link gives some fascinating tid bits about this special saint.
Catholic Online: "St. John, Apostle and Evangelist (Feast day - December 27th)
and Fish Eaters
They were called just after SS. Peter and Andrew -- two other fishermen brothers -- left everything behind to follow Jesus, and SS. Peter, James, and John had the most prominent positions of all the Apostles. It was these three who were present for the Transfiguration and Christ's Agony in the Garden of Gethsemani.
Peter and John were the two who prepared for the Last Supper, at which John -- described as "the disciple whom Jesus loved" -- sat next to Our Lord, with his head on Christ's chest. St. John went with Peter to the palace of the high priest after Jesus was arrested -- but it was John alone among the Apostles who stayed with Christ during the Crucifixion.
After the Resurrection, it was SS. John and Peter among the Apostles who ran to the empty tomb after being told by St. Mary Magdalen that He had risen.
When Herod Agrippa I came to power and the Apostles were scattered, he is said to have gone to Asia Minor for a time, returning to Jerusalem by A.D. 51 and taking part in the "Council of Jerusalem" spoken of in Acts.
Though he wasn't martyred, it wasn't for his enemies' lack of trying. According to legend, he was served poisoned wine, but survived because he blessed the wine before he put it to his lips; the poison rose from the chalice in the shape of a serpent. In his happy memory, Catholics bring wine to church, which the priest blesses, turning it into a sacramental called the "Love of St. John." Catholics use this sacramental wine for special occasions throughout the year and to give to the sick.
Father: Lord Jesus Christ, Thou didst call Thyself the vine and Thy holy Apostles the branches; and out of all those who love Thee, Thou didst desire to make a good vineyard. Bless this wine and pour into it the might of Thy benediction so that every one who drinks or takes of it, may through the intercession of Thy beloved disciple, the holy Apostle and Evangelist John, be freed from every disease or attack of illness and obtain health of body and soul. Who livest and reignest forever.
A toast to the love of St. John is then pledged by all the family.
The craft I made for Pentecost a few years back gets used now for every Apostolic feast day. For St. John's feast I put some of our Christmas candles in it and lit them for a pretty centerpiece.