Commemorated on April 30th
St James the Apostle and brother of St John the Theologian
St James (Iakovos) was one of the Twelve, like his brother John (commemorated September 26), whom the Lord called "Sons of Thunder", because they became great preachers and because of their profound theology. It was the Saint's boldness in preaching the Gospel that Herod Agrippa, the son of Aristobulus and grandson of Herod the Great, could not endure, and so he took him into custody during the days of the Passover, and slew him with the sword (Acts 12: 1-2); and thus he drank the cup of which the Saviour had spoken to him prophetically (Matt 20:23). As for Herod, the following year he went down to Caesarea, and, as the Acts of the Apostles records: "Upon a set day, Herod, arrayed in royal apparel, sat upon his throne, and made an oration" to the elders of Tyre and Sidon; and the flatterers that surrounded him "gave a shout, saying, 'it is the voice of a god, and not of a man'. And immediately an Angel of the Lord smote him, because he gave not God the glory; and" like his grandfather (commemorated Dececember 29) "he was eaten of worms and gave up the spirit" (Acts 12:21-23).
Dismissal Hymn (Third Tone)
O Holy Apostle James, intercede with the merciful God that He grant to our souls forgiveness of offences.
Kontakion (Second Tone)
You heard the voice of your God when it called to you, O glorious James; hence, casting off your father's love, you together with John you brother ran straight to Christ the Lord, and with him was granted to see the Lord's most divine Transfiguration