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To The End of the Earth

St. Andrew, one of the apostles, was a humble fishermen in Galilee. Andrew was sentenced to death for following Christ and preaching the gospel. Feeling unworthy to die as Christ had on a T-shaped cross, he asked to be crucified on an X-shaped cross called a saltire, now featured on the Scottish flag. Andrew was buried in Greece until the Emperor removed his bones and took them to Constantinople. A monk, Rule (or Regulus), had a vision that told him to take as many of the remains as he could to the end of the earth, which at the time was believed to be close to Scotland. Rule was shipwrecked at Kilrymont, now St. Andrews. A special chapel was made for the relics of St. Andrew to be placed in. It was erected in St. Andrews. The small chapel was later replaced by the Cathedral of St. Andrew in 1160. St. Andrews became a place of pilgrimages, many came to visit the relics of St. Andrew, and the city became the religious capital of Scotland. The cathedral is now in ruins and the relics of St. Andrew are gone. The remains of St. Andrew are commemorated by a plaque, located in the ruins where visitors walk. A piece of his shoulder blade was sent to the Roman Catholic community of Scotland in 1879. In 1969, Pope Paul VI returned some of the relics to Scotland. They are now on display in St. Mary's Roman Catholic Cathedral in Edinburgh.

St. Andrews Trivia

-St. Andrews day is connected with Advent, which begins on the nearest Sunday to November 30th
-St. Andrews day marks the opening of Christmas markets
-Around midnight on November 29th, it was traditional for girls to pray to St. Andrew for a husband. They would make a wish and look for a sign that they had been heard. She could throw a shoe at the door. If the shoe pointed in the direction of the exit, then she would marry and leave her parents house within a year. Or she could peel a whole apple without breaking the peel over the shoulder. If the peel formed a letter, this suggested the name of her future groom
-The 1320 Delcaration of Arbroath cites Scotland's conversion to Christianity by Saint Andrew

 

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