Pope Benedict on Bartholomew
Saint Peter’s Square
Wednesday, 4 October 2006
Dear Brothers and Sisters,
In the series on the Apostles called by Jesus during his earthly life, today it is the Apostle Bartholomew who attracts our attention. In the ancient lists of the Twelve he always comes before Matthew, whereas the name of the Apostle who precedes him varies; it may be Philip (cf. Mt 10: 3; Mk 3: 18; Lk 6: 14) or Thomas (cf. Acts 1: 13).
His name is clearly a patronymic, since it is formulated with an explicit reference to his father’s name. Indeed, it is probably a name with an Aramaic stamp, bar Talmay, which means