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May 14

The month of Mary: A Marian Month

Saint of the day:
Saint Matthias

Patron Saint of alcoholics; carpenters; Gary, Indiana; 

Great Falls-Billings, Montana; smallpox; tailors; hope; perseverance

Saint Matthias’ Story

According to Acts 1:15-26, during the days after the Ascension Peter stood up in the midst of the brothers–about 120 of Jesus’s followers. Now that Judas had betrayed his ministry, it was necessary, Peter said, to fulfill the scriptural recommendation that another should take his office. “Therefore, it is necessary that one of the men who accompanied us the whole time the Lord Jesus came and went among us, beginning from the baptism of John until the day on which he was taken up from us, become with us a witness to his resurrection” (Acts 1:21-22).

They nominated two men: Joseph Barsabbas and Matthias. They prayed and drew lots. The choice fell upon Matthias, who was added to the Eleven.

Matthias is not mentioned by name anywhere else in the New Testament.

Matthias replaced Judas.










Benediktinerabtei St Matthias

(Saint Matthias Benedictine Abbey)

Matthiasstraße 85

54290 Trier, Germany

*The tomb of St Matthias lies within the nave of this church and is surrounded by candles.

A sarcophagus within the crypt is said to contain some of his relics.


Basilica of St Mary Major

Piazza di Santa Maria Maggiore 42

Rome, Italy

*Some relics of St Matthias rest within the porphyry urn that makes up the base of the Papal Altar.

Also in the confessio below this altar are five pieces of wood believed to be from the crib of Jesus Christ.

*The remains of St Jerome (d. 420) were brought to this basilica in the 12th century.

There is some doubt as to their exact location. They either rest under the Papal Altar

within the main body of the church or within the confessio in the right transept.



Jewish Italian Apple-Apricot Crostada

  • 4 Granny Smith or other good cooking apples

  • ½ cup sugar

  • 2 sticks unsalted butter or pareve margarine

  • 2 large egg yolks

  • 1 ½ cups unbleached all-purpose flour

  • Pinch of salt

  • 1/2 cup apricot preserves



1. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees and grease a 10-inch fluted tart pan with a removable bottom.

2. Peel, core, and slice the apples into crescents about a fourth to an eighth of an inch thick. You should have about 24 pieces.


3. Place the sugar, butter, egg yolks, flour, and salt in a large bowl and press everything together with your fingers or combine the ingredients in a food processor fitted with a steel blade and process until the dough forms a ball. Either way, do not overwork the dough.


4. Take the ball of dough in your hands and flatten in the center of the tart pan. Working with your fingers and a cake knife or wide spatula, spread the dough evenly around the pan and up the sides. The dough should be about 1/2 inch thick on the sides. Press the dough into the flutes and spread it evenly across the bottom of the pan, then trim and flatten the edges with a knife. Starting on the outside and working toward the center, lay the apple slices in an overlapping, concentric circle.


5. Place the apricot preserves in a saucepan and heat over a low flame until it has liquefied. Using a pastry brush, glaze the apples and the visible crust.

6. Place the tart pan on a cookie sheet and bake in the middle of the oven for 15 minutes. Reduce the oven to 350 degrees and continue cooking until the crust is deep golden brown, about 45 minutes. Bring to room temperature, unmold, and put on a platter or serving dish.


Carciofi alla Giudia (Artichokes Jewish Style)

  • 12 small artichokes

  • Juice of 2 lemons

  • Olive oil for deep frying

  • 1 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley

  • ½ cup fresh basil leaves

  • 2 teaspoon sea salt or to taste

  • ½ teaspoon freshly ground pepper

  • 10 cloves garlic, crushed

  • Matzoh meal or flour for dredging


1. Trim the tops off the artichokes, working around the globe to retain the shape. Halve the lemons, juice them, and cover with cold water. Soak the artichokes in this lemon water until ready to use, then drain dry.
2. Hold the artichokes by the stems and bang them a little against the countertop to open
the leaves.
3. Combine ½ cup of the olive oil, the parsley, basil, salt, pepper, and garlic and sprinkle the mixture between the leaves. Roll each artichoke in matzo meal or flour.
4. Heat a large pot, wok, or Dutch oven with a cover, filled with about 3 inches of oil, to sizzling. Deep-fry 2–3 artichokes at a time for about 10 minutes, turning occasionally with a tongs; they will puff up as they cook. Serve hot, sprinkled with additional sea salt.
Yield: 6 servings

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