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Puntos de vista - a personal Spain blog

Musings about Spain and Spanish life by Paul Whitelock, hispanophile of 40 years and now resident of Ronda in Andalucía .

Saints Peter and Paul
Wednesday, June 29, 2022 @ 7:15 AM

Today, 29 June, is the Holy Day for two of the most important holy figures in the Christian world, the disciples Peter and Paul.

In some regions of Spain and in some other Roman Catholic countries it’s even a bank holiday. As it’s Pablo de Ronda’s name day he decided to investigate the background of these two important men.


St Peter

According to Matthew’s gospel: While walking by the Sea of Galilee, he [Jesus] saw two brothers, Simon (who is called Peter) and Andrew his brother, casting a net into the sea, for they were fishermen. And he said to them, “Follow me, and I will make you ‘fishers of men.” [Matthew 4: 18-19].

Famously, Peter went on to deny Christ three times: “I do not know the man.” And immediately the cock crowed. And Peter remembered the saying of Jesus, “Before the cock crows you will deny me three times.” And he went out and wept bitterly. [Matthew 26: 74 - 75]

Nevertheless, Peter was the rock on which the Christian church was founded.


St Paul

St. Paul the Apostle, original name Saul of Tarsus, a Greek-speaking Jew, became one of the leaders of the first generation of Christians, often considered to be the most important person after Jesus in the history of Christianity.

Before his conversion Saul was travelling on the road to Damascus so that he might find any Christians there and bring them "bound to Jerusalem" (Holy Bible, English Standard Version).

At midday, a light brighter than the sun shone around both him and those with him, causing all to fall to the ground, with the risen Christ verbally addressing Saul regarding his persecution. 

Having been made blind, along with being commanded to enter the city, his sight was restored three days later by Ananias of Damascus. After these events, Paul was baptised, beginning immediately to proclaim that Jesus of Nazareth was the Jewish Messiah and the Son of God.

Of the 27 books in the New Testament, 13 are attributed to Paul, and approximately half of another, Acts of the Apostles, deals with Paul’s life and works. Thus, about half of the New Testament stems from Paul and the people whom he influenced.

His surviving letters have had enormous influence on subsequent Christianity and secure his place as one of the greatest religious leaders of all time.


Note: Tomorrow is also the Saint’s Day for Don Pablo, who writes the Spanish Matters blog for Eye on Spain. He has written an article in castellano for Spanish language learners. You can read it here.



Encyclopedia Britannica

Holy Bible, English Standard Version



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