St. Simon Orthodox Saint History and Name Day Information

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It is true that name days are considered to be very important amongst Greek Orthodox Christians. In Greece, it is the custom to celebrate the name day as if it were their own birthday, and some even celebrate their name day and let their birthday go completely unnoticed. While this isn’t the cause amongst all Greeks, it certainly does show how important named days really are.

Saint Peter, also referred to as Simon by Jesus and also known as Simon Peter, is one of the saints whose name days are regularly celebrated. Known in the Orthodox Christian Church as Apostle Simon the Zealot and also Cephas, he is also considered to be one of the Twelve Disciples (Twelve Apostles) of Christ. His feast day, or name day, is celebrated each year on May 10. Here’s more information:

Early Life of Saint Simon

It is interesting to note that most of what we know about Simon Peter came from the Bible itself. Therefore, not much is actually known about his early life. We do know, however, that he was born in a place called Cana, which was in Galilee. Historians trace his birth year to around 1 B.C., about one year before Jesus Christ was born.

Simon Follows Christ

As told in the Bible, Simon began to follow Christ shortly after Jesus turned water into wine in Cana, the place of Simon’s birth. The story itself is told in the Book of John and it is said that Simon was a guest at this wedding. Shortly after it he left his home to become one of Christ’s followers. He is known, therefore, as being one of the earliest followers of Christ. He was also known for being a passionate follower and often displayed signs of having a slight temper.

Later Years of Saint Simon

Simon Peter is one of the apostles, or disciples, that was martyred. He is thought to have died around 68 A.D. He spent his life traveling and preaching about Jesus. His travels took him to the Republic of Georgia where he was eventually captured and tortured by pagans in Abkhazia. Before that, he spent some time in African preaching about the Gospel of Christ.

In the Orthodox Church, we have some hymns that talk about the Apostle Simon Peter. Referred to primarily as Simon in these hymns, they are sung on a fairly regular basis. Here they are:

Troparion (Tone 3)

O holy apostle Simon,
entreat the merciful God,
to grant our souls forgiveness of transgressions.

Kontakion (Tone 2)

Let us all bless the eloquent Simon in praise,
who sowed the doctrines of wisdom in the hearts of the faithful;
for he now stands before the throne of glory
and rejoices with the angels,
as he prays for us all unceasingly.

Conclusion – Saint Peter’s name day is celebrated on May 10. Visit the Name Day page for more information about other Orthodox Christian name days.


Wikipedia – Twelve Apostles

Orthodox Wiki – Apostle Simon (Source for Photo Credit for Image Above)

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This post was written by Greek Boston