Saint Matthias

Feast Day: May 14th

Saint Matthias
1st Century


Matthias was one of the seventy disciples of Jesus, and had been with Him from His baptism by John to the Ascension (Acts 1:21, 22). It is related (Acts 1:15-26) that in the days following the Ascension, Peter proposed to the assembled brethren, who numbered one hundred and twenty, that they choose one to fill the place of the traitor Judas in the Apostolate. Two disciples, Joseph, called Barsabas, and Matthias were selected, and lots were drawn, with the result in favour of Matthias, who thus became associated with the eleven Apostles.

All further information concerning the life and death of Matthias is vague and contradictory. According to Nicephorus, he first preached the Gospel in Judea, then in Ethiopia (that is to say, Colchis) and was crucified. The Synopsis of Dorotheus contains this tradition: “Matthias preached the Gospel to barbarians and cannibals in the interior of Ethiopia, at the harbour of the sea of Hyssus, at the mouth of the river Phasis. He died at Sebastopolis, and was buried there, near the Temple of the Sun”. Still another tradition maintains that Matthias was stoned at Jerusalem by the Jews, and then beheaded. It is said that Saint Helena brought the relics of Saint Matthias to Rome, and that a portion of them was at Trier. Bollandus doubts if the relics that are in Rome are not rather those of the Saint Matthias who was Bishop of Jerusalem about the year 120, and whose history would seem to have been confounded with that of the Apostle.


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1st Century AD
Judaea, Roman Empire


Likely AD 80
Colchis (Georgia)




Padua, Italy
Trier, Germany


St. Matthias replaced Judas Iscariot as one of the original twelve apostles of Jesus through a decision made by prayer and a casting of lots. He is known for his perseverance through persecution after accepting his call to serve.