Today. December 27, we celebrate the Feast of Saint John, Apostle and Evangelist – the “disciple Jesus loved” (John 13:23). The author of a Gospel account, three epistles, and the book of Revelation, John was a close friend of Jesus, a spiritual teacher and the only disciple who was not marryred, living to about 100 years of age —shortly before he passed away—John wrote the Book of Revelation, the fourth Gospel, and his three epistles. His writing is symbolized by an eagle, soaring to the greatest theological and mystical heights.
What was from the beginning,
what we have heard,
what we have seen with our eyes,
what we looked upon
and touched with our hands
concerns the Word of life —
for the life was made visible;
we have seen it and testify to it
and proclaim to you the eternal life
that was with the Father and was made visible to us—
what we have seen and heard
we proclaim now to you,
so that you too may have fellowship with us;
for our fellowship is with the Father
and with his Son, Jesus Christ.
We are writing this so that our joy may be complete." - 1 Jn 1:1-4
John was a fisherman with his father Zebedee and his brother James the Greater, joining Simon Peter and Andrew as "Fishers of men" - a phrase used in the gospels to describe the mandate given by Jesus to his first disciples. Two brother fishermen, Simon called Peter and Andrew, were casting a net into the Sea of Galilee. As he commenced his preaching ministry, Jesus called them
to follow him and told them that in doing so they were to become "fishers of men". The phrase is mentioned in Matthew 4:19 and Mark 1:17.
Likewise, when Our Lord called John to follow Him, John immediately left his nets, father, and home.
From that time, he remained very close to Jesus, witnessing along with Peter and James miracles and revelations—such as the Transfiguration—for which the other Apostles were not present.
After Jesus’ Passion, Resurrection, and Ascension, John stayed in Palestine for about twelve years, evangelizing there with the other Apostles. Eventually he went to preach in Ephesus, and from then on traveled a great deal, preaching, baptizing, and ministering to the new Catholic communities.
John was unique from all the other Apostles in his relationship with Our Lord. It was John who watched at the foot of the Cross when all others fled. It was John who was charged to care for the Blessed Mother as her son. It was John who felt the beating Heart of the One Who loved the world so much He became man to redeem it.
St. Paul called John “a pillar of the early Church” because he was a firm, reliable guide who worked tirelessly on behalf of the Church