Andrew vs. Elizabeth

After a rousing first day of Lent Madness 2020, in which Thomas More routed James the Less 68% to 32% amid heavy voting (over 10,000 votes cast), we’re on to day two. And we’ve established, once and for all, that less is not more. At least in this year’s edition of the Saintly Smackdown.

Today, you’re invited to gird your loins for a battle of Biblical proportions as two Scriptural saints face off. Now, you may be aware that this year’s bracket features a quartet of Elizabeths, one in each quadrant: The Biblical Elizabeth, Elizabeth of Hungary, Elizabeth the New Martyr, and Elizabeth Frye. Will the four Elizabeths make up the Faithful Four? Only time and your votes will tell (though the oddsmakers in Vegas are dubious).

Today we encounter the first of the four Elizabeths, she of the Bible, who takes on Andrew the apostle.

But before you read, reflect, and vote (hopefully in that order), we wanted to share an article about Lent Madness that appeared in the San Diego Union Tribune. Partly because it’s a nice article about this little devotion of ours, but mostly because we like cities named for saints.

Also, note that tomorrow is the ONLY non-weekday vote of Lent Madness. Margery Kempe will square off against Eustace. So don’t forget to head over here to make your pick.

Okay, enough blathering on. Time to see whether Elizabeth or Andrew will be cast out of Lent Madness 2020!


Andrew was Simon Peter’s brother. When they were young, they learned to fish on the Sea of Galilee. They spent stormy afternoons together, watching the brooding clouds form and then wrestling the battering waves. They breathed in the calm days, floating on the gentle rhythm of the sea, staring into the horizon, talking about life, God, and meaning.

Sometimes Andrew and Peter fished late into the night. Under those glimmering stars, they must have looked at where the sky and sea met and wondered if there was something else for them, something more than nets and scales.

For many people, it would have been difficult to have Peter as a brother. Peter’s tongue spoke every word on his mind and his body followed every impulse. Living with Peter’s passion would have been overwhelming. Even as the authors compiled the gospel stories, the focus always seemed to gravitate toward Peter. Yet, Andrew didn’t seem to mind Peter’s big personality. When Jesus invited Andrew and Peter to follow him, Andrew didn’t hug Peter goodbye and wish him well on his adventure. Instead, Andrew dropped his nets and said farewell to the boats.

We get a glimpse of Andrew’s humility when we first meet him in the gospels, and that humble attitude marks Andrew to his death. Not only did Andrew follow Jesus, listening to his teaching, watching as he multiplied the loaves and fishes, and sharing the Last Supper with him, but after Jesus’ death, resurrection and ascension, Andrew went on to preach in Thrace, Scythia, and Achaea. His journeys took him along the Black Sea and the Dnieper River.

In Achaea, Andrew was martyred. He refused to be nailed to a cross as Jesus was. Just as John the Baptist didn’t feel worthy enough to tie Jesus’ sandals and Peter couldn’t bear to have Jesus wash his feet, Andrew couldn’t imagine being executed on the same instrument of death. Instead, Andrew was tied to an X-shaped cross, which is now commonly known as a “Saint Andrew’s Cross.” Andrew became the patron saint of Scotland, Ukraine, Romania, and Russia.

Collect for Andrew
Almighty God, who gave such grace to your apostle Andrew that he readily obeyed the call of your Son Jesus Christ, and brought his brother with him: Give unto us, who are called by your Word, grace to follow him without delay, and to bring those near to us into his gracious presence; who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.

—Carol Howard Merritt



Elizabeth of the Bible has her story told mostly in the Gospel of Luke. She was the mother of John the Baptist, and a relation of some kind — most likely a cousin — to Mary, the mother of Jesus.

The name Elizabeth literally means “God has sworn,” an idea that was prominent in Elizabeth’s life. When we meet her in Luke’s Gospel, she is already married to Zechariah, a high priest in the temple. Tradition holds that Elizabeth, too, would have been a member of the priestly class.

When Zechariah fails to believe the word of the angel who announces the birth of John, the angel, in a fit of holy pique, strikes him mute until he can shape up. Luckily, Elizabeth is there to rescue her erstwhile husband, name her son John, and restore his voice to him. Although Elizabeth doesn’t even receive a visit from the angel, she believes enough that she accepts the divine gift of her pregnancy and, in turn, passes the gift of acceptance onto her cousin.

When Mary, her unwed teenaged cousin, arrives on her doorstep, it is Elizabeth who provides Mary shelter and it is to Elizabeth that Mary sings the triumphant Magnificat. Elizabeth, notably, doesn’t ask Mary where the baby came from, or what is going on — Elizabeth simply welcomes her with open arms.

The writer of Luke doesn’t opine on what sort of mother Elizabeth was, or really, what sort of person she was, but between correcting her husband, sheltering an outlandish cousin, and raising John the Baptist, one can imagine she must have been quite the force.

The only other account we receive of Elizabeth is from one of the non-canonical gospels — the Infancy Gospel of James. It records the tradition of Elizabeth and baby John the Baptist fleeing from Herod’s genocidal soldiers. When Elizabeth cries out to the mountains for shelter, the mountain splits open and hides her and the baby.

It’s worth noting that Elizabeth is hailed as a holy figure by a wide range of faith traditions, groups as diverse as Islam to the Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod. Though we don’t have much concrete information about her, Elizabeth’s legacy of hospitality, courage, and compassion left a lasting impact.

Collect for Elizabeth
Almighty God, you have surrounded us with a great cloud of witnesses: Grant that we, encouraged by the good example of your servant Elizabeth, may persevere in running the race that is set before us, until at last we may with him attain to your eternal joy; through Jesus Christ, the pioneer and perfecter of our faith, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

—Megan Castellan

Andrew vs. Elizabeth

  • Elizabeth (63%, 5,919 Votes)
  • Andrew (37%, 3,462 Votes)

Total Voters: 9,381

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Andrew: © Plamen Agov • [CC BY-SA 3.0 (]
Elizabeth: Peter Paul Rubens, 1618. [Public domain]

222 Comments to "Andrew vs. Elizabeth"

  1. John Cabot's Gravatar John Cabot
    February 28, 2020 - 8:00 am | Permalink

    Said this mom to her odd little boy
    “Honeyed locusts you want? Oy vavoy!
    So to mothers out there
    Whose sons won’t comb their hair:
    Should Elizabeth win, leap for joy!

    • February 28, 2020 - 8:52 am | Permalink

      Your best one yet, John!

      • John Cabot's Gravatar John Cabot
        February 29, 2020 - 9:04 am | Permalink

        OK, all you fellow Elizabethans: it’s now February 29th and she’s won — so I want to see you leap!

    • February 28, 2020 - 9:04 am | Permalink

      Love it. I’m afraid I was the John the Baptist of my family. I would eat anything I could get my hands on and grew a beard for a part in a play. Then I passed a petition around school to demand my mother let me keep my scraggly beard. My mother laughed and handed me the razor.

    • February 28, 2020 - 9:08 am | Permalink

      I am moved by the talk about Andrew as Peter’s younger brother and his humility in spite of the shining light of his brother. I was the third of four, and all throughout public school my teachers would compare me to that exemplar student, my older brother John. I don’t think I took it as well as Andrew back then, but now I appreciate what a good example John was for me. So for younger brothers everywhere, I vote for Andrew!

      • John B Blackwood's Gravatar John B Blackwood
        February 28, 2020 - 1:36 pm | Permalink

        Me too! So far I’m 0 and 2 but that’s the story of my life and doesn’t necessarily make me wrong.

      • February 28, 2020 - 7:21 pm | Permalink

        Speaking as a teacher, I must observe that comparisons are odorous! Teachers ought not to do that to their students. Congratulations on being able to appreciate your brother’s example in spite of the comparisons.

    • Neil Elliott's Gravatar Neil Elliott
      February 28, 2020 - 9:33 am | Permalink

      Great to see someone practicing one of their charismatic gifts for all to enjoy. THANKS!

    • February 28, 2020 - 10:00 am | Permalink

      Ach, I attend St Andrew’s and was excited to vote for him until Elizabeth took him on – had to go with Elizabeth

    • Kate The Catechist's Gravatar Kate The Catechist
      February 28, 2020 - 10:15 am | Permalink

      My favorite of all of your limerick offerings so far! And of course I am Pro-Elizabeth this round as well!

    • Sue Campbell's Gravatar Sue Campbell
      February 28, 2020 - 11:04 am | Permalink

      Elizabeth’s patience, love and care
      Andrew’s humility, oh so rare
      Which do I choose – both so fine
      I went with Andrew, brother divine

      • Miriam Saxon's Gravatar Miriam Saxon
        February 28, 2020 - 11:36 am | Permalink

        Me. I would have preferred to vote for the woman but the church where I serve is named in honor of St. Andrew so I felt I had to be true to our patron saint in this round.

        • Joanie's Gravatar Joanie
          February 28, 2020 - 12:57 pm | Permalink

          I am so happy to learn more than just me voted for St. Andrew because I attended his church in Torrance, CA for 50 plus years.

        • February 28, 2020 - 2:24 pm | Permalink

          I think we can use some St. Elizabeth churches!

          • Elizabeth C.'s Gravatar Elizabeth C.
            February 28, 2020 - 5:01 pm | Permalink

            Ahmen…, Kim!

          • Diane McClure's Gravatar Diane McClure
            February 28, 2020 - 7:14 pm | Permalink

            Agreed Kim! Long over due!

        • Sue Goodman's Gravatar Sue Goodman
          February 28, 2020 - 2:25 pm | Permalink

          Just the same with me! Difficult choice ( & I learned more from the non-canonical information on Elizabeth) but I finally voted for Andrew.

    • Elias lokken's Gravatar Elias lokken
      February 28, 2020 - 4:47 pm | Permalink

      So cool

  2. February 28, 2020 - 8:00 am | Permalink
    • February 28, 2020 - 8:23 am | Permalink

      The pope ordered me to give up trolling for Lent.

      • Wendy Mayer's Gravatar Wendy Mayer
        February 28, 2020 - 7:04 pm | Permalink

        That’s funny Marcus!

    • Valerie's Gravatar Valerie
      February 28, 2020 - 8:24 am | Permalink

      That is outstanding!

    • Kate's Gravatar Kate
      February 28, 2020 - 8:35 am | Permalink

      Thank you – I laughed out loud!

    • Kathleen M.'s Gravatar Kathleen M.
      February 28, 2020 - 8:42 am | Permalink


    • February 28, 2020 - 8:53 am | Permalink

      So it’s Broadway for memes this year? Should be fun! Thanks!

      • February 28, 2020 - 11:34 am | Permalink

        Yeah. New job and in a play with no time for that level of sustained focus. The Smudge memes should be fun.

    • Peg S.'s Gravatar Peg S.
      February 28, 2020 - 9:05 am | Permalink

      I laughed so loud I woke my cats.

    • February 28, 2020 - 10:26 am | Permalink

      This made me laugh out loud.

    • David Dreisbach's Gravatar David Dreisbach
      February 28, 2020 - 10:38 am | Permalink

      Since we’re talking about the Magnifi-Cat, who would you take in a smackdown of Sylvester vs. Tigger?

    • Jan LaBonte's Gravatar Jan LaBonte
      February 28, 2020 - 11:19 am | Permalink


    • February 28, 2020 - 3:54 pm | Permalink

      Ah. WE are reading the Divine Dance at St. Paul’s Cathedral Erie for Lenten discussion. within it is topic of SYNCRONICITY. The Cat goes quite nicely with Alice’s Cheshire Google Doodle today!!!!!

      • February 28, 2020 - 4:12 pm | Permalink

        I feel badly that I cannot join in those discussions as they conflict with rehearsals at the Playhouse. I love me some Rohr though.

    • MB's Gravatar MB
      February 28, 2020 - 6:48 pm | Permalink


  3. Betsey's Gravatar Betsey
    February 28, 2020 - 8:03 am | Permalink

    Andrew .. patron saint of Scotland, the most beautiful land in the world .. ’nuff said.

    • Rod's Gravatar Rod
      February 28, 2020 - 8:30 am | Permalink

      I agree! Scotland is incredible!

      • Manny Faria's Gravatar Manny Faria
        February 28, 2020 - 8:48 am | Permalink

        Andrew and Scotland!

        • John Cabot's Gravatar John Cabot
          February 28, 2020 - 11:11 am | Permalink

          Looking forward to spending time on Iona someday…

          • Tom Dunham's Gravatar Tom Dunham
            February 28, 2020 - 12:30 pm | Permalink

            Iona is a magical place….I was only there for a half day but had the joy of singing a concert in the church! What a truly blessed experience!

      • Chuck's Gravatar Chuck
        February 28, 2020 - 9:42 am | Permalink

        Extra thanks to Scotland for ordaining our revolutionary bishops

    • Cheryl's Gravatar Cheryl
      February 28, 2020 - 11:35 am | Permalink


    • Pastor Rick's Gravatar Pastor Rick
      February 28, 2020 - 11:57 am | Permalink

      As a Scotsman, I must vote for Andrew (or reveal what I wear under my kilt!), though the way Elizabeth was amazingly strong and warmly welcoming challenges me to stretch my will and heart.

  4. February 28, 2020 - 8:06 am | Permalink

    Still voting for sainted cousins, but this was tough choice
    went down to the buzzer.

  5. Ann G.'s Gravatar Ann G.
    February 28, 2020 - 8:09 am | Permalink

    Must go w/ Andrew, as I attend St. Andrew’s Church

    • February 28, 2020 - 9:32 am | Permalink

      Easy choice! Women birth the babies without which there is no Andrew or Peter! What a force Elizabeth carried!

      • jane fenicle's Gravatar jane fenicle
        February 28, 2020 - 11:13 am | Permalink

        Amen! I went with Liz too.

    • Medora Kennedy's Gravatar Medora Kennedy
      February 28, 2020 - 5:17 pm | Permalink

      Andrew is a favorite icon, My Parish, and my son’s name.
      The bloggers didn’t mention that he led Peter to Jesus (the first evangelist!)

  6. Irene's Gravatar Irene
    February 28, 2020 - 8:10 am | Permalink

    Tough one, but I went with Elizabeth because she was an older Mom. I feel that.

    • February 28, 2020 - 8:25 am | Permalink

      ..not to mention she is unofficial patron saint of the not-yet-born

    • Doug the chalice bearer's Gravatar Doug the chalice bearer
      February 28, 2020 - 8:41 am | Permalink

      Both candidates have the gift of following the spirit. Elizabeth appeals to me because she accepts the miraculous.

  7. Carlene Gadapee's Gravatar Carlene Gadapee
    February 28, 2020 - 8:11 am | Permalink

    Elizabeth–not only because she was eminently faithful through a lot of life’s “trials” but because she is acknowledged widely by several faith traditions. And women get a lot less “credit” in most Western faiths…go Liz!

  8. February 28, 2020 - 8:11 am | Permalink

    I am Vicar of Church of the Holy Apostles in Oneida WI and I am headed to Scotland, my ancestral home, in May so I have to cast a vote for Andrew the “first-called” of the Apostles and the patron saint of Scotland.

    • Rod's Gravatar Rod
      February 28, 2020 - 8:30 am | Permalink

      you’ll fall in love with it!

    • Janice Pauc's Gravatar Janice Pauc
      February 28, 2020 - 9:42 am | Permalink
    • February 28, 2020 - 12:59 pm | Permalink

      Safe and enjoyable travels, Rodger!
      (Don’t you have another birthday coming up on Wednesday? Or has my memory fallen back a step with age, lol.)

    • Stinukshuk's Gravatar Stinukshuk
      February 28, 2020 - 2:56 pm | Permalink

      Make the journey to Iona. Spend a weekend. A bery thin place and beautiful.

    • February 28, 2020 - 4:06 pm | Permalink

      a believer in synchronicity! I once (1978-1980) was vicar of Church of the Holy Apostles, Wauconda (Illinois not Waconda, Africa) and I share your sentiments. However our votes cancelled out. I always vote for one of my many relations. As a Levite, still under blessing of Numbers 28:12-13 to mu-Great-Grandpa Phineas, Elizabeth is something like my 8th or 9th first cousin 90 x removed. LOL. This was a tough choice, though.

  9. Sara P's Gravatar Sara P
    February 28, 2020 - 8:12 am | Permalink

    Very, very difficult decision.

  10. Lawrence Jagdfeld's Gravatar Lawrence Jagdfeld
    February 28, 2020 - 8:14 am | Permalink

    Andrew – the “First called,” and “First to answer.” The name is Greek in origin, not Hebrew, which tells us something of his parents’ willingness to embrace their Galilean neighbors. I give my vote to the one who first accepted the call to “Follow me.”

  11. Susan Fisher's Gravatar Susan Fisher
    February 28, 2020 - 8:16 am | Permalink

    Oh for the facebook thumzup when I really want one – John Cabot’s limerick! Since there is no thumzup, will a hurray from a mother of odd little boys do in a pinch? Thank you!!!

  12. Karen's Gravatar Karen
    February 28, 2020 - 8:19 am | Permalink

    Very tough choice today! I really appreciate this brilliant observation about Elizabeth – “between correcting her husband, sheltering an outlandish cousin, and raising John the Baptist, one can imagine she must have been quite the force” but in the end decided to vote for Andrew, because, although “it would have been difficult to have Peter as a brother,” “he readily obeyed the call of your Son Jesus Christ, and brought his brother with him.” May we bring all those (even “difficult” ones) in our spheres of influence to Jesus and readily obey His call, even if it costs us everything!

    • Joyce's Gravatar Joyce
      February 28, 2020 - 11:33 am | Permalink
      • Joyce's Gravatar Joyce
        February 28, 2020 - 11:35 am | Permalink

        Thumbs Up!

  13. Lucy Sinkular's Gravatar Lucy Sinkular
    February 28, 2020 - 8:20 am | Permalink

    I choose Elizabeth, because if we didn’t have John the Baptist where would we be? Also, what grace in her welcome to Mary.

    • February 28, 2020 - 8:43 am | Permalink

      that sold me plus she is an older mother And I know how many problems that causes

    • Karen Mallon Sharp's Gravatar Karen Mallon Sharp
      February 28, 2020 - 9:11 am | Permalink

      I agree!

  14. Jim Jaworski's Gravatar Jim Jaworski
    February 28, 2020 - 8:21 am | Permalink

    Four Elizabeth’s in the Faithful Four was appealing to me!

    • Kit's Gravatar Kit
      February 28, 2020 - 8:40 am | Permalink

      I agree. Four Elizabeth’s in the Final Four would be sooo cool. Let’s make it happen.

  15. Fiona's Gravatar Fiona
    February 28, 2020 - 8:26 am | Permalink

    A really tough choice today. I would have happily voted for either as there is so much to admire in both. As a child I was always drawn to Andrew, so my (single) vote goes to him for playing a part in my journey into faith.

  16. Michael's Gravatar Michael
    February 28, 2020 - 8:26 am | Permalink

    It would be quite funny to have four Elizabeths in the last week.

  17. Noelle Webb's Gravatar Noelle Webb
    February 28, 2020 - 8:26 am | Permalink

    I have to go with Elizabeth, since I am the mom of an Elizabeth!

    • February 28, 2020 - 10:28 am | Permalink

      Elizabeth both for her own story and because that’s the name of my oldest niece.

  18. Dena's Gravatar Dena
    February 28, 2020 - 8:30 am | Permalink

    With my nephew Andrew, who shares the same traits of humility and mindfulness with St. Andrew and who is attending the University of Edinburgh, I had to vote for Andrew!

    • February 28, 2020 - 8:44 am | Permalink

      Elizabeth- Not just because of her relationship with ornery men, but because she was there for Mary. Through her listening heart she allowed a young woman the space to announce her choice, to be just who she was in that time and through eternity.

  19. Pat Smith's Gravatar Pat Smith
    February 28, 2020 - 8:31 am | Permalink

    This was a hard one, both humble and obedient servants.

  20. Rod's Gravatar Rod
    February 28, 2020 - 8:37 am | Permalink

    I guess I’ll have to go with Andrew, tho tough choice. Elizabeth, a most wonderful ‘force’ to be sure, had her life changing situation HAPPEN to her, while Peter CHOSE his. Although I’m still not sure which little circle I’ll hit when voting!!!!

    • Ruth Douglas Miller's Gravatar Ruth Douglas Miller
      February 28, 2020 - 8:59 am | Permalink

      Andrew certainly chose his fate, but Elizabeth didn’t have to shelter Mary and be so gracious to her. The Magnificat is sung to a joyful audience, not a judgemental one. Not that that helps me vote! I’m going to wait awhile here…

  21. Cathy's Gravatar Cathy
    February 28, 2020 - 8:37 am | Permalink

    I agree with those who have said that today was a really tough choice. My middle name is Elizabeth, so . . .

  22. JustMeJo's Gravatar JustMeJo
    February 28, 2020 - 8:38 am | Permalink

    A bit of a wrangle, this one was, for me. Our parish is developing a wonderful relationship with St. Andrew’s Church nearby, with our choirs joining together for special Evensong celebrations, while our rector’s wife (also a priest) has undertaken study of “The Anglican Way” with their priest. On the other hand, I have long had a soft space in my heart for Elizabeth, who so long barren, conceived in her latter years and bore a son who, even before his birth, demonstrated his rebel presence by dancing with joy in her womb! And she welcomed Mary, and sheltered and loved her unconditionally!
    Thank goodness I have adequate time for prayer and pondering before casting my vote!

  23. Betsy aka Elizabeth D's Gravatar Betsy aka Elizabeth D
    February 28, 2020 - 8:39 am | Permalink

    My legal name is Elizabeth, so, what can I do???
    Two very worthy opponents, two beautiful write ups, very impressed with Megan Castellan’s research into the non canonical gospels and Islam!

  24. Jo's Gravatar Jo
    February 28, 2020 - 8:40 am | Permalink

    Hospitality, courage and compassion! How refreshing! What we could use more of! Besides, Elizabeth is my middle name – she gets my vote!

  25. Carolyn A's Gravatar Carolyn A
    February 28, 2020 - 8:40 am | Permalink

    Our daughter, Elizabeth, is married to Andrew, so this was a tough one for me! Andrew (son in law) is humble, but Elizabeth is our DAUGHTER, and is a gift of God and one tough cookie, who is showing much love and grace to an “outlandish cousin,” among other similarities to the biblical Elizabeth. Go,Liz! We love you!

    • Caroline's Gravatar Caroline
      February 28, 2020 - 10:33 am | Permalink

      Similar problem here. We have two children: Elisabeth and Andrew. One knows she’s my favorite in the girl division and we’ve always told Andrew that he tops the boy division. I shall have to leave it there.

  26. Liz Brunton's Gravatar Liz Brunton
    February 28, 2020 - 8:41 am | Permalink

    I mean, I’m named for her so I had to go Liz but that Andrew piece…phew! Carol Howard Merritt really knows how to move me.

  27. February 28, 2020 - 8:41 am | Permalink

    Had to vote for the fierce mother who raised John and protected Mary.

  28. Renée Dowe's Gravatar Renée Dowe
    February 28, 2020 - 8:44 am | Permalink

    I voted for Elizabeth. She was so good to Mary and seemed to be a real take-charge person.

    Last year was my husband’s and my first time following Lent Madness. Except for 1 or 2 saints, we both ended up voting for the same person. This year, it’s only the second day of the Madness, and both days we voted for the opposite person. Ha, ha. Wonder what we’ll do next!

    P.S. I love the limericks, but where’s the guy with the songs?

  29. February 28, 2020 - 8:47 am | Permalink

    Too bad such geat saints have to compete in the first round!! St. Andrew’s is my parish so it’s a no brainer for this vote!

    • Marel E Rogers's Gravatar Marel E Rogers
      February 28, 2020 - 8:48 am | Permalink

      Should always proofread, I meant such great saints…..

  30. John Thompson's Gravatar John Thompson
    February 28, 2020 - 8:49 am | Permalink

    One of the tougher choices.

  31. Elaine Culver's Gravatar Elaine Culver
    February 28, 2020 - 8:52 am | Permalink

    It’s a safe guess that JBap was a challenging teenager, and that Zechariah and Elizabeth had no few moments of hand wringing. Locusts? Wild honey? She gets my vote.

  32. Amy S.'s Gravatar Amy S.
    February 28, 2020 - 8:53 am | Permalink

    I admire Andrew’s “drop everything” response to Jesus to follow him, so Andrew got my vote today.

  33. carol's Gravatar carol
    February 28, 2020 - 8:55 am | Permalink

    Have to go with Elizabeth ,my great granddaughter’s name ,am excited for this Lenten madness as it rolls on.

  34. Sarah P.'s Gravatar Sarah P.
    February 28, 2020 - 8:57 am | Permalink

    My mother was a Sarah (which means princess), and an Elisabeth (dedicated to God). She took her name seriously, and lived it. So to Elizabeth, my vote goes.

    • February 28, 2020 - 12:48 pm | Permalink

      My daughter is also named Sarah Elizabeth. I also have a sister named Elizabeth, and my mother, so that’s who I voted for too.

  35. Lane Johnson's Gravatar Lane Johnson
    February 28, 2020 - 8:58 am | Permalink

    Andrew is another of the overlooked saints. Like Barbabus, he brought in the big names and continued to that work without the fame.

  36. Lynn Bonney's Gravatar Lynn Bonney
    February 28, 2020 - 8:58 am | Permalink

    My heart loves Elizabeth, but I’m casting my ballot for Andrew, the patron of my parish.

  37. Katherine Grimes's Gravatar Katherine Grimes
    February 28, 2020 - 8:59 am | Permalink

    This is a hard one. I have a nephew named Andrew and a niece named Elizabeth, so this one is all in the family.

  38. February 28, 2020 - 9:06 am | Permalink

    I was all set to vote for Andrew, another oft-forgotten apostle. I loved his biography’s perspective on what it was like to be the lesser-known sibling. Bless his heart!

    Then I remembered that Elizabeth in her childless years was one of my special saints (with Sarah, Hannah, and the woman with the 12-year flow) who walked with me through some very painful times. I have to stand with her today.

  39. Karen Mallon Sharp's Gravatar Karen Mallon Sharp
    February 28, 2020 - 9:07 am | Permalink

    Great Collects, both!

  40. Fr. Marc's Gravatar Fr. Marc
    February 28, 2020 - 9:09 am | Permalink

    There once was a brother from Galilee
    Who fished all night on the stormy Sea
    His brother was loud
    Which brought him no clout
    But his faithfulness brought many to Calvary

  41. February 28, 2020 - 9:11 am | Permalink

    Really tough one. I’m an older mother who has a son–Andrew. Bearing the burden of having three sisters my Andrew has been, at times, a handful, but always loving and good. So I was torn but ended up voting for Elizabeth, welcoming, non-judgmental, and always there.

    • Diane in Estes Park's Gravatar Diane in Estes Park
      February 28, 2020 - 9:40 am | Permalink

      We agree on a vote! Also, casting my vote for Elizabeth. She had her hands full with her husband and son.

      • February 28, 2020 - 1:24 pm | Permalink

        Yay, Diane! You are a blessing, even if our votes are, often, wildly different.

  42. patricia turner's Gravatar patricia turner
    February 28, 2020 - 9:17 am | Permalink

    Since I attend St. Andrew of the Valley Episcopal Church in Tamworth, NH which proudly flies the Saltire (St Andrew’s Cross) at the front door, I have to go with Andrew here. Plus, Scotland is my heart’s home after 4 trips to that beautiful country. GO ANDREW!

  43. Jim Kucher's Gravatar Jim Kucher
    February 28, 2020 - 9:18 am | Permalink

    Believe the Women!

  44. Joyce Rush's Gravatar Joyce Rush
    February 28, 2020 - 9:18 am | Permalink

    Don’t tell my son, Andrew, but today it is Elizabeth for this older mother.

  45. Bucks County Janet's Gravatar Bucks County Janet
    February 28, 2020 - 9:19 am | Permalink

    The story of how Zechariah lost his speech shows that even angels have tempers. How inspiring for us humans!

  46. Marian the Lutheran's Gravatar Marian the Lutheran
    February 28, 2020 - 9:19 am | Permalink

    Hmm. Andrew is, like many I have seen, the quieter yet more courageous brother in so many ways. He could live and work with a “heart on his sleeve” sibling who acted before he thought and threw himself at whatever passion he was currently fixated on. Andrew had strengths that many don’t realize.
    Elizabeth is every woman in my church. She takes control when her husband (Or son, I’m sure) freaks out, and rarely if ever questions God’s plans. She loves unconditionally and whole heartedly no matter who you are or what predicament you find yourself in.
    So, do I vote for the brother of someone with ADHD, or someone that could be a grandmother in my church? I will pray on it and accept that ‘it will be as God wills it.’ (Something my gram used to say. I think I have my answer.)

  47. Nolan's Gravatar Nolan
    February 28, 2020 - 9:22 am | Permalink

    I almost voted for Andrew because one of my two favorite chapels in Gloucester Cathedral where I was confirmed is St. Andrew’s chapel, but Elizabeth’s life and witness won me over.

  48. carol's Gravatar carol
    February 28, 2020 - 9:26 am | Permalink


  49. Doris's Gravatar Doris
    February 28, 2020 - 9:27 am | Permalink

    I was baptized at St Andrew’s, Newark, and married at St Andrew’s, Valparaiso-his humility, his bringing his brother to Jesus, his willingness to play necessary roles behind the scenes have always endeared him to me. If I ever claimed a personal patron saint, it would be Andrew.

  50. Joyce's Gravatar Joyce
    February 28, 2020 - 9:31 am | Permalink

    My son Andrew, named after Peter’s brother, has an older brother a bit like Peter. andrew had always been the more modest one. I go with Saint Andrew.

  51. Michele's Gravatar Michele
    February 28, 2020 - 9:32 am | Permalink

    I have to vote for Andrew. My husband, named Andrew, is 1 of 9 siblings and all are named after saints.
    I hope everyone doesn’t vote for Elizabeth just because the moderators mentioned that all 4 Elizabeth’s could make it to the final 4.
    Andrew deserves to move on. I love the history and use of Andrew’s Cross.

  52. Kathy in Nicaragua's Gravatar Kathy in Nicaragua
    February 28, 2020 - 9:34 am | Permalink

    OK, so Zechariah was struck dumb when he questioned God’s angel. After his tour of duty, he went home and Elizabeth became pregnant and nine months later all the friends and neighbors were amazed when Elizabeth said the baby was to be named John. HOW DID SHE KNOW THAT? Zechariah couldn’t speak. I can only conclude that Elizabeth knew how to read, and communicated with her husband during her pregnancy in writing. Wouldn’t it have been unusual for a woman even of the priestly class to have been taught to read in those days? I fondly believe that Zechariah himself taught her to read, during those long, childless years.

    • Melanie's Gravatar Melanie
      February 28, 2020 - 11:05 am | Permalink

      Maybe the angel spoke to Elizabeth, too?

    • Fiona's Gravatar Fiona
      February 29, 2020 - 5:42 am | Permalink

      It is quite common in Medieval imagery to portray St Anne teaching Mary to read, so I guess that it was assumed that women at that time could read. We have a stained glass window in our church showing a young Mary holding a book with Anne beside her. I’m not sure where the idea came from though.

  53. Nancy Trego's Gravatar Nancy Trego
    February 28, 2020 - 9:37 am | Permalink

    You didn’t mention a role of Andrew’s I love. When we see him, he is the one who brings someone else to Jesus. Definitely his brother. I think the child with the loaves and fish as well.

  54. Jane Cutting's Gravatar Jane Cutting
    February 28, 2020 - 9:37 am | Permalink

    You sure didn’t make it easy with this one, however, I went with Andrew’s humility.

  55. Neil Elliott's Gravatar Neil Elliott
    February 28, 2020 - 9:39 am | Permalink

    Not mentioned above: Luke reports that when the newly pregnant Mary met the already pregnant Elizabeth, “the child leaped in her womb”–John “saluting” Jesus. Jewish writings of the period foretell that on the messiah’s conception, wombs everywhere will “quicken”; the “womb” of the world is a powerful metaphor in John and Paul as well (and 4 Ezra). Luke gives but a glimpse of the powerful womanly metaphor.

  56. SharonDianneFosterPattison's Gravatar SharonDianneFosterPattison
    February 28, 2020 - 9:40 am | Permalink

    Elizabeth gets my vote! Woman are the strongest between the two humans, we cook, clean, carry a child for most 9 months, expected to love, care for and cook and clean all in our 24 hour day! Men go, out to bring In The food and then sit and wait for,it,to be prepared! It was predicted that a Elizabeth would bear The saint to, prepare the way for our Saviour Jesus Christ by an unknown woman named Mary, Elizabeth’s cousin, Nothin more needs to be said, it was already ordained by GOD THE FATHER!

  57. February 28, 2020 - 9:41 am | Permalink

    Bloggers, watch the details! Galilee is a small lake surrounded by hills – there is no “sky meets the horizon on the sea” line! Elizabeth – God has sworn? Maybe – but also, “house (bet[h]) of God.” And it’s not church tradition, but Luke himself who tells us Elizabeth was of the priestly line – descendant of Aaron. And Zechariah was a rotating-in priest, not high priest, not even one of the four corrupt chief priestly families! I look to Lent Madness to learn about saints, correctly!

    But, my vote is for Elizabeth, who clearly was one of the very few literate women of her day.

    • St. Celia's Gravatar St. Celia
      February 28, 2020 - 10:04 am | Permalink

      And I am trying to wrap my head around how the fishermen can “wrestle” with something that is “battering” them. But that’s part of the excitement here at Lent Mixed Metaphors. The revelations and piety surpass the bounds of human language!

    • Liz Good's Gravatar Liz Good
      February 28, 2020 - 11:39 am | Permalink

      Galilee isn’t so small — it’s about 13 miles long and 64 square miles. At ground level the horizon is about 3 miles away. So there could very well be a sea-sky horizon.

  58. St. Celia's Gravatar St. Celia
    February 28, 2020 - 9:59 am | Permalink

    I voted for the “older mother.” I have in mind an icon that depicts Mary and Elizabeth embracing; the icon shows a baby in the womb of each. Elizabeth was the first to recognize the special baby: “And why has the mother of my lord come to visit my house?” So as the Magdalene is apostle to the apostles by being first to witness to the resurrection, perhaps Elizabeth is the apostle to the theotokos by being first to witness to the sacredness of this pregnancy. I have never been fond of the whole “unwed teenager” thing; I find it irritating and a sentimentalizing of a genuine social problem. But I am fascinated by the twinning in the story: the paired cousins, the bifurcated narratives. As always in the Hebrew stories, the younger supplants the older. As Jacob supplanted Esau, so Jesus supplanted John. If only we knew what went on between Mary and Elizabeth in the three months Mary spent with her. Elizabeth seems to have been a healing, nurturing presence. If we are looking for a maternal figure in the Bible, we need look no further than Elizabeth.

    • February 28, 2020 - 10:16 am | Permalink


    • February 28, 2020 - 12:57 pm | Permalink

      St. Celia, I love your thought processes, especially on the cousin parallels. I was actually thinking of trying my hand at making icons as a Lenten discipline and you gave me the perfect inspiration for my imperfect skill. I’m not promising to post what I draw – we’ll see how it comes out!

  59. Lucretia's Gravatar Lucretia
    February 28, 2020 - 10:08 am | Permalink

    Also I believe Elizabeth was first one to recognize Jesus identity becoming the prophet who was in her womb.

  60. Sally in Dallas's Gravatar Sally in Dallas
    February 28, 2020 - 10:12 am | Permalink

    There are so many reasons that I’ve always loved the apostle Andrew: primarily because of the Gospel of John, Chapter 1: 40, where two of the first disciples were told by Jesus, “Come and see.” This Lent I feel directly challenged to “stay with him” throughout these 40 days. And as the following verses say, Andrew was the first disciple, who then who then found his brother Simon Peter, declaring “We have found the Messiah.” I attended St Andrew’s in Amarillo for 47 years, where I learned, prayed, and was blessed by a living community. The first Apostle gets my vote!

  61. Joan Garuti's Gravatar Joan Garuti
    February 28, 2020 - 10:12 am | Permalink

    Tough choice. I have an older sister and always lived under her huge, glorious, wonderful shadow. We spent many evenings on the porch under the stars discussing God, family and politics and I miss her so much! So I feel Andrew and I would be kindred spirits, but I tend to be a mother hen and want to help those in need if my talents and meager resources can be of use. I believe and accept miracles as I have experienced a few and I don’t listen to men who talk smack. I go to the mountains to refresh my spirit. Elizabeth wins.

  62. Steve Lusk's Gravatar Steve Lusk
    February 28, 2020 - 10:20 am | Permalink

    Too bad your research didn’t reach as far as the Gospel of John. By John’s account, Andrew wasn’t the younger brother who tagged along when Peter decided to follow Christ. It was Andrew who (with an assist from Elizabeth’s kid) recognized Jesus as the Messiah and brought Peter to see for himself (John 1:35-42)

  63. Elizabeth N Anderson's Gravatar Elizabeth N Anderson
    February 28, 2020 - 10:21 am | Permalink

    Why do my favorites always have to be opposite each other!
    To those who voted for Andrew because he chose is path and Elizabeth had hers chosen for her:the fact that Elizabeth, an older woman having her first child, accepted it, helped her husband deal with it, and raised her son to be equal to the task God gave him makes her a great role model for all women – who are not allowed choices and those who are.
    To those who pointed out with out women accepting pregnancy, wanted or not, there would be no men – you are so right.
    A more personal note to those who want to call an Elizabeth Liz -always be sure that person accepts it. I dislike seeing such a liting, meaningful name turned into a word that when heard reminds most people on a reptile. I happen to like reptiles but many don’t.
    No nee to guess who I voted for –

  64. February 28, 2020 - 10:22 am | Permalink

    really tough choice, but as Elizabeth (on my driver’s license ) had to go that way. I love how she believes even though she hasn’t seen

  65. Vicar Mollie's Gravatar Vicar Mollie
    February 28, 2020 - 10:23 am | Permalink

    I love both of these wonderful people, but this wasn’t really hard. While the first church I remember was St. Andrew’s and I’m of Scottish descent, I’m (more importantly) the mother of an Elizabeth and a long-time friend and admirer of Celebrity Blogger Megan.
    One note perhaps of interest: there are some manuscripts that attribute the Magnificat to Elizabeth, not Mary.

    • St. Celia's Gravatar St. Celia
      February 28, 2020 - 10:52 am | Permalink

      I was so fascinated by your suggestion that Elizabeth said the Magnificat (a theory I had never heard) that I tried to find some analysis of it. The Catholic doctrinal experts are very resistant: “The evidence for the variant is extremely weak. There is no Greek support for it, and the testimony of Irenaeus is divided. … The arguments are insufficient to give weight to a case which is already weak on textual grounds. … The hymn should, then, be attributed to Mary.” There you have it!

    • February 28, 2020 - 11:51 am | Permalink

      It’s long bothered me that Luke gave Zechariah a song, but not Elizabeth; Mary, but not Elizabeth; Simeon but not Anna.. I wish we knew their songs as well!

    • February 28, 2020 - 2:54 pm | Permalink

      There is a line of scholarly thought which sees the many parallels between the Magnificat and thes Song of Hannah, and the situation of Elisabeth and that of Hannah, and speculate that Magnificat, indeed, was by Elizabeth.

  66. Janene's Gravatar Janene
    February 28, 2020 - 10:25 am | Permalink

    Thank you for Lent Madness

  67. Mary O'Donnell's Gravatar Mary O'Donnell
    February 28, 2020 - 10:41 am | Permalink

    Elizabeth is a great role model for us all.

  68. Elaine's Gravatar Elaine
    February 28, 2020 - 10:44 am | Permalink

    My son, who passed away in 2007, was an Andrew so I had to vote for Andrew!

  69. Margaret's Gravatar Margaret
    February 28, 2020 - 10:46 am | Permalink

    Elizabeth’s erstwhile husband? Doesn’t seem to apply here. She was very much the loving, concerned wife. Her hubby comes back from his temple duties in a funk and unable to even tell her about it without a lot of papyrus and styli. Though a older woman in a long marriage, which has possibly not been filled with romance for quite a time, she holds and comforts him, he responds, and, lo, a child is coming–the long awaited fulfillment of their hopes. She gets my vote.

  70. Deirdre Mae the chorister's Gravatar Deirdre Mae the chorister
    February 28, 2020 - 10:46 am | Permalink

    Very tough choice, I am not usually given to agonizing.

  71. Lucy Porter's Gravatar Lucy Porter
    February 28, 2020 - 10:47 am | Permalink

    What a choice for the second day of this holy journey! My Scottish ancestry says “Andrew” while my life experience says “both-and”! My ministerial calling, to lead others to Christ, says “Andrew” and that’s the one I’m choosing.

  72. Amy's Gravatar Amy
    February 28, 2020 - 10:51 am | Permalink

    A recent sermon at our church pointed out that several Andrew stories in the NT say that he brought people to Jesus. (Starting with his brother Simon, later dubbed Peter.) So my vote goes to Andrew for his evangelistic gift – wish I had it, myself. Being someone’s mother just doesn’t move me as an especially saintly attribute, and I don’t see that we know much else about Elizabeth.

  73. February 28, 2020 - 10:53 am | Permalink

    This is a hard choice. Both Andrew and Elizabeth represent our sacred history and both revealed Jesus to us. History seems much closer with Andrew’s call to humility and to death on an X-shaped cross.

  74. February 28, 2020 - 10:54 am | Permalink

    But Andrew was the first evangelist after John the Baptist. He said, “Come and see.” and so should we all. Had to give him my vote.

  75. Anthony Lee's Gravatar Anthony Lee
    February 28, 2020 - 11:02 am | Permalink

    I like the line about the “unwed teenaged … outlandish cousin,” but I went with Andrew because I was, in my youth, to some extent overshadowed by a more illustrious brother. There’s an interesting discussion of how Andrew became the patron saint of Scotland (a fact which seems to influence a lot of votes, and which Andrew himself obviously had nothing to do with) on a site called “Historic UK.” Another site says he’s also the patron saint of singers (hear hear!) and a protector against gout (?!?), one of which I am and the other of which I occasionally suffer from.

  76. February 28, 2020 - 11:06 am | Permalink

    Both are worthy, but I went with Elizabeth. Her story, like most of the Biblical women, deserve more air time.

  77. February 28, 2020 - 11:08 am | Permalink

    I know what it means to be a pain-in-the-neck brother. I’ve gotta go with Andrew in appreciation for my brother’s humility.

  78. Greg Finger's Gravatar Greg Finger
    February 28, 2020 - 11:17 am | Permalink

    “her erstwhile husband”?

    Her former or previous husband?


  79. Anne LeVeque's Gravatar Anne LeVeque
    February 28, 2020 - 11:18 am | Permalink

    The Visitation is the Bible story that passes the Bechdel Test!

    • Melanie's Gravatar Melanie
      February 28, 2020 - 11:30 am | Permalink

      [pins a prize on that comment]

  80. Martha Nicholson's Gravatar Martha Nicholson
    February 28, 2020 - 11:27 am | Permalink

    This ones really hard! Baptized, confirmed, and married at St. Andrew’s Church, but my mother and one of our daughters are named Elizabeth. Hmmmm.

  81. Melanie's Gravatar Melanie
    February 28, 2020 - 11:29 am | Permalink

    I’m strangely devoted to voting for people named Elizabeth this year. I wonder why?

    • Becky's Gravatar Becky
      February 28, 2020 - 4:17 pm | Permalink


  82. TJ's Gravatar TJ
    February 28, 2020 - 11:32 am | Permalink

    In honor of my grandmother, I’m rooting for everyone named Elizabeth.

  83. john's Gravatar john
    February 28, 2020 - 11:38 am | Permalink

    I like Andrew, who in his quiet way invited his brother to follow Jesus. And, as a child, I attended our church’s morning brotherhood meeting (Andrew & Philip). It was a nice way to begin Sunday services.

  84. Charles Stuart's Gravatar Charles Stuart
    February 28, 2020 - 11:41 am | Permalink

    Andrew’s apostleship, evangelism, and martyrdom get my vote.

    • Anne E.B.'s Gravatar Anne E.B.
      February 28, 2020 - 12:52 pm | Permalink

      As a little sister to a “shining star”, pain-in-the-neck big brother, this Scot is on Team Andrew.

  85. Verdery Kassebaum's Gravatar Verdery Kassebaum
    February 28, 2020 - 11:45 am | Permalink

    Not an easy decision. Both are inspirations to us and to their own families. I went with Elizabeth for several reasons–including having a niece of that name–but especially for her providing a place for Mary as she dealt with her own unexpected pregnancy.

  86. Mary Cole's Gravatar Mary Cole
    February 28, 2020 - 11:53 am | Permalink

    Andrew is my vote for my favorite nephew is named after him. And he has an older brother who is named Peter. So I keeping them in the family. Oh, my sweet sister is Elizabeth but there are so many, maybe next time her name comes up. Only one Andrew.

  87. February 28, 2020 - 12:05 pm | Permalink

    Both great examples of humble faithfulness; both responsible in different ways for giving us two great witnesses for Christ, John the Baptist and Simon Peter. I love Andrew’s behind-the-scenes discipleship, but I feel like everyone with a mother should vote for Elizabeth.

  88. Librarycat's Gravatar Librarycat
    February 28, 2020 - 12:12 pm | Permalink

    Patron saint of Scotland.
    What is not to like?
    Go, Andrew, Go!

  89. Joanne B. Parrott's Gravatar Joanne B. Parrott
    February 28, 2020 - 12:13 pm | Permalink

    Let’s go, ladies-Elizabeth it is in honor of my goddaughter Amanda Elizabeth

  90. Gena Gilliam's Gravatar Gena Gilliam
    February 28, 2020 - 12:16 pm | Permalink

    This was a difficult choice! Two very worthy saints, indeed.

  91. Meredith Hales's Gravatar Meredith Hales
    February 28, 2020 - 12:24 pm | Permalink

    Voted for Andrew in memory of my beloved son, Andrew who passed away in 2018.

    • St. Celia's Gravatar St. Celia
      February 28, 2020 - 12:48 pm | Permalink

      Very sorry for your loss. May you feel comforted among this little band of pilgrims. Have a blessed Lent.

  92. Pam Dunbar's Gravatar Pam Dunbar
    February 28, 2020 - 12:33 pm | Permalink

    It had not occurred to me before this commentary on Elizabeth that her son, John, being just months older than Jesus, would have been a target of Herod’s, too. Ancient legend aside, I really do wonder how she kept him safe.

  93. Jean's Gravatar Jean
    February 28, 2020 - 12:37 pm | Permalink

    Hmm – son=in-law Andrew, sister-in-law and granddaughter Elizabeth – the Lizzies have it!

  94. February 28, 2020 - 12:42 pm | Permalink

    I found this vote one of the most difficult in the several years I have participated in Lenten Madness. Loved Andrew’s humility –having Peter as a brother couldn’t have been easy. Elizabeth in her unconditional love. Both writers did an exceptional job today. however wins will be a good choice and I hope they go much further. Finally went with Elizabeth.

  95. Jennifer Woods's Gravatar Jennifer Woods
    February 28, 2020 - 12:47 pm | Permalink

    Hard to choose. Went with Andrew because my son’s name is Andrew, and he’s the patron Saint of Scotland. I won’t be upset if Elizabeth wins,.

  96. February 28, 2020 - 1:04 pm | Permalink

    My church is a combined combination of Saint Andrew and Saint Elizabeth. Coming together wasn’t always an easy process. Now you make us vote between our name sakes!

  97. James N Lodwick's Gravatar James N Lodwick
    February 28, 2020 - 1:05 pm | Permalink

    The sometimes non-benevolent Supreme Executive Committee (they admit it!) often confront us with impossible choices, and today is one of them. How I would love to be able to vote for BOTH of today’s saints. Elizabeth’s role in raising her wonderfully challenging son John and in her welcome of her pregnant relative Mary (one can imagine her comforting, reassuring and encouraging her probably overwhelmed young cousin) deserves to be celebrated. Indeed, some Latin manuscripts of the Bible and a few other sources put the great poem of the Magnificat not in Mary’s mouth, but Elizabeth’s’

    Nevertheless, after a great deal of agonizing, I decided to vote for Andrew: he was a great apostle of Jesus, beginning with his bringing his impulsive brother to join him in following Jesus. And he died a martyr for Christ, according to ancient tradition (even if we must discount the legend that he chose an X-shaped cross, since that notion can’t be traced to earlier than the high Middle Ages). Further, there are a number of stories in the gospel that tell us more about Andrew, such as his helping to make possible the great feeding of the multitude in the wilderness with its hints of Eucharist and Passion to come. Andrew was a real Mensch, as his name implies!

  98. Ruth Anne Hill's Gravatar Ruth Anne Hill
    February 28, 2020 - 1:26 pm | Permalink

    As I ponder these two grace-filled and loyal followers of Christ, I’m struck by their similarities…both answered God’s call to them without hesitation and both loved ‘problem’ family members. Andrew not only put up with a ‘mouthy’ little brother, he brings Peter along when given the chance to get away from him!! Elizabeth lovingly accepts a pregnant and un wed Mary into her home without judgment. Such grace!! I voted for Elizabeth. In a very splintered and hate filled world, we rejoice and celebrate when people from diverse faith traditions find similarities rather than devisions in their theologies and traditions. Elizabeth manages to unite religious folks as different as Muslims and Christians in their understanding of saintly behavior. You go, girl!!

  99. February 28, 2020 - 1:38 pm | Permalink

    Thanks for noting 2 things:
    1) That Mary sang the Magnificat to Elizabeth. It drives me crazy every time I’m at a service of Holden Evening prayer; Marty Haugen has contributed mightily to biblical illiteracy by introducing the Magnificat with the words of the Annunciation. Grrr.
    2) For noting that even the LCMS counts Liz among the saints! And after removing the Marian verse in the hymn “Ye Watchers and Ye Holy Ones” in the 1982 Lutheran Worship, Mary has been restored to “lead[ing] their praises” (that is, of cherubim & seraphim) in the 2006 Lutheran Service Book.

  100. J Eugenia's Gravatar J Eugenia
    February 28, 2020 - 1:42 pm | Permalink

    Mary who ran over the hills of Galilee with Good News was met by a cousin with good news if her own. I can’t think of a more intimate expression of female solidarity than this lovely scene.

  101. Jamie Glock's Gravatar Jamie Glock
    February 28, 2020 - 1:53 pm | Permalink

    The black on purple is almost impossible to read … please try to not use it often … I have to use my Saintly Scorecard booklet to read about today’s Saint’s in order to vote.

  102. Anne Harris's Gravatar Anne Harris
    February 28, 2020 - 2:22 pm | Permalink

    A tough choice! I like to support the women but in my 60+ years of life I have worshipped at churches named after St Andrew for a total of 38 years. Andrew it is.

  103. MB's Gravatar MB
    February 28, 2020 - 2:23 pm | Permalink

    This is a hard one!
    Shortly after graduating college, I heard a sermon about Andrew and evangelism, based in the phrasing “come and see,” emphasizing that we are to invite, not to lecture, people to discover God’s grace. I also really appreciate the biographer’s emphasis on how hard it can sometimes be to be the younger sibling of a really impressive person.

    On the other hand, Elizabeth’s welcome serves as such a model for us. She didn’t judge her young cousin, or pepper her with questions, or chide her. She welcomed her and listened to her.

    It’s a touch choice!

  104. Nancy's Gravatar Nancy
    February 28, 2020 - 2:28 pm | Permalink

    Going with Andrew, as we have two in the family, and helped start a St. Andrew’s church besides. It sounds there are plenty of Elizabeths coming up in Lent Madness 2020 to consider. Both of our Andrews are younger brothers with some of today’s Andrew’s traits. Go Andrew!

  105. Barbara MacRobie's Gravatar Barbara MacRobie
    February 28, 2020 - 2:28 pm | Permalink

    Oh no, just two days into the race and we have the first terrible matchup between two equally lovely saints, both of whom speak to me personally! I’m sorely tempted to nudge over to Andrew because a saw-toothed version of his cross, the Cross of Burgundy, is part of the flag of the German Renaissance reenactment troupe to which I belong. But as an older mom with two sons, I’ll come down on the Elizabeth side.

  106. Karen R's Gravatar Karen R
    February 28, 2020 - 2:32 pm | Permalink

    This is so hard: a difficult choice in the very first round. Replicates my voting choice upcoming on Tuesday. Andrew, the self-effacing, eager servant of God. Elizabeth, a Biblical expression of maternal solidarity. Freedom to Scotland! But Elizabeth it is.

  107. Linda M.'s Gravatar Linda M.
    February 28, 2020 - 2:38 pm | Permalink

    This was a tough vote for me today. I’ve always been partial to both Elizabeth & Andrew. I voted for Andrew because of his humility and he has always been underrated. Also because my oldest grandson is named Andrew. That being said, I will cheer for Elizabeth if she wins.

  108. J A Reyes's Gravatar J A Reyes
    February 28, 2020 - 2:45 pm | Permalink

    This one was a very tough vote for me. On the one hand, my parish church is named for Andrew but on the other hand, my heart goes out to Lizzie. So, Lizzie it is!

  109. February 28, 2020 - 2:50 pm | Permalink

    I’m sure Liz was very nice and her acceptance of the baby deserves kind notice. Yet, Andy’s day is clearly due. Everyone surely knows the poem I am writing now:
    Andy, Andy, your day is due, Even brother Pete would vote for you; You are truly your father’s son, who loves you more than a hole-in-one. Follow the code well-known as Morse; enjoy your victory that’s right on course. Always recall that all the Scots, love you dearly, lots and lots!

    • elizabeth warren's Gravatar elizabeth warren
      February 28, 2020 - 7:52 pm | Permalink

      Love your poem, but I have to vote for myself over my husband, Andrew 🙂

  110. Sarah's Gravatar Sarah
    February 28, 2020 - 2:50 pm | Permalink

    Where’s Oliver??

    • TJMannion's Gravatar TJMannion
      February 28, 2020 - 4:04 pm | Permalink

      That’s what I have been wondering, too!

    • February 28, 2020 - 4:52 pm | Permalink

      Have been wondering that too!!! We did not see much of himself last year either.

  111. David Pyke's Gravatar David Pyke
    February 28, 2020 - 3:05 pm | Permalink

    So, I guess being an Apostle means nothing based on Days 1 & 2

  112. February 28, 2020 - 3:09 pm | Permalink

    Andrew dropped everything and followed Jesus.
    Also my ordination to the diaconate was on his day (transferred, but who’s counting?).
    Also the Scots!!! My ancestors and friends.

  113. Kathy's Gravatar Kathy
    February 28, 2020 - 3:12 pm | Permalink

    Truly Elizabeth portrayed a great feminine soul.

  114. February 28, 2020 - 3:15 pm | Permalink

    Reading all of your comments has not helped me decide. Carol’s depiction of Andrew was achingly beautiful and Elizabeth’s story has always moved me. Eenie meenie miney moe?

  115. Lynda's Gravatar Lynda
    February 28, 2020 - 3:40 pm | Permalink

    The chance of an Elizabethan final four, plus her hospitality and true grit led me to cast my vote for dear Elizabeth.

  116. Rilla Holmes's Gravatar Rilla Holmes
    February 28, 2020 - 3:44 pm | Permalink

    Tough decision! As a younger sibling, I sympathize with Andrew, but Elizabeth’s grace and hospitality edged past for me.

  117. Patricia Gordon's Gravatar Patricia Gordon
    February 28, 2020 - 3:52 pm | Permalink

    Admire and embrace Elizabeth – the name of my beloved grandmother but must vote for the first called, first to answer Andrew and in honor of brothers everywhere and always and to honor the patron saint of Scotland. Where else could Samuel Seabury have gone???

  118. Ann Tottenham's Gravatar Ann Tottenham
    February 28, 2020 - 3:53 pm | Permalink

    Some scholars believe that Andrew rather than John was the “beloved disciple”.
    +Ann T.

  119. TJMannion's Gravatar TJMannion
    February 28, 2020 - 3:58 pm | Permalink

    Sorry, Andy. Next time, step it up a little, at least compared to Lizzy.

  120. February 28, 2020 - 4:10 pm | Permalink

    This decision was a close call. I like both of these very fine saints..
    I ultimately went with Elizabeth because, jeez, imagine having J the B as your kid
    Being a saint who is also the mother of a saint can’t be a walk in the park, enough said.

  121. Elizabeth C.'s Gravatar Elizabeth C.
    February 28, 2020 - 5:11 pm | Permalink

    Choosing was a bit difficult, but the strength, determination, humility, caring, unconditional love of Elizabeth… – resonated to the core of my being; I love you Andrew, but the Saint for today is: “St.” Elizabeth

  122. Carol Motuz's Gravatar Carol Motuz
    February 28, 2020 - 5:14 pm | Permalink

    When I was born on St. Andrew’s Day, how can I not vote for Andrew

  123. February 28, 2020 - 5:43 pm | Permalink

    Going with the sibling today. The thoughtful fisherman who brought his brother to the Lord and was faithful to the the end when he was ‘exed out’ is my choice. Besides, I have a fisherman brother, gruff in his demeanor, strong in his faith, who casts his talents out into the world and draws in others to do likewise. This one’s for my little brother.

  124. Cheryl Colby's Gravatar Cheryl Colby
    February 28, 2020 - 6:02 pm | Permalink

    Like Doris I grew up at St. Andrews Newark.The start of my religious education started there.I was baptized,confirmed and married there.My father gave his all to the vestry of St. Andrews Newark.I could not choose anyone but St. Andrew. Elizabeth is more than a very worthy opponent and it was very hard. The bios were excellent,however being to Scotland a few times and loving every minute of it I had to go with St. Andrew. On a side note I would like to say that I am very impressed with the depth of knowledge written in these comments. Mine excluded of course. I will be learning a great deal this Lent.

  125. Victoria Madsen's Gravatar Victoria Madsen
    February 28, 2020 - 6:18 pm | Permalink

    Oh, Elizabeth you are indeed a FORCE! Just watched a movie about another ELIZABETH.

  126. Bet Byrd's Gravatar Bet Byrd
    February 28, 2020 - 6:33 pm | Permalink

    They all trusted God. Andrew did more.


  127. Lisa in Joshua, TX's Gravatar Lisa in Joshua, TX
    February 28, 2020 - 6:41 pm | Permalink

    Although I have an older brother whom I love dearly and am comforted daily by our familial bonds, he is married to an woman, who interestingly is named Elizabeth. And it is her inspiration, strength, guidance and love for me that pulls me to vote for the Baptist’s mother! Great early days for 2020 so far!! 🙂

  128. Pamela Payne's Gravatar Pamela Payne
    February 28, 2020 - 6:50 pm | Permalink

    I know the SEC doesn’t like us to me moaning about the difficult choices that often occur in Lent Madness, but this is truly one of those difficult times! The bloggers did a wonderful job introducing each saint and now I have to decide. The comments have me going this way and that way, depending on which I just read. Sigh. I will be happy with whomever wins this contest.

  129. February 28, 2020 - 8:05 pm | Permalink

    For Andrew, since humility is such an underrated value. Must find more of it! It is desperately needed today!

  130. February 28, 2020 - 8:41 pm | Permalink

    A sib is named Andrew and a grandson as well
    seems a vote for their namesake would be swell
    For my eldest and her daughter, Elizabeth’s their middle
    And my mother-in-law too should count just a little
    So the mother of John who Christ he foretold
    Gets my vote in this contest, but both deserve Gold

  131. February 28, 2020 - 9:27 pm | Permalink

    What’s not to love about Elizabeth? This was no easy choice, but my heart had to go with Andrew. He has always been one of my favorite Apostles, perhaps because I felt akin to him being baptized in St. Andrew’s Episcopal Church!

  132. andrea's Gravatar andrea
    February 28, 2020 - 9:35 pm | Permalink

    Andrew. First called, Patron Saint of Scotland. Alba gu Brath!

  133. Valerie's Gravatar Valerie
    February 28, 2020 - 9:57 pm | Permalink

    I love the way Elizabeth embraced a pregnant Mary without peppering her with questions and inquiries. I grew up with many female cousins and through the years there have been a number of circumstances surrounding our pregnancies. We start off the announcement with embraces and kisses for each other. Okay, unlike Elizabeth maybe a little gossip on the side but mostly love. Elizabeth has my vote

  134. Leonora's Gravatar Leonora
    February 28, 2020 - 11:54 pm | Permalink

    Today I’m voting for two Elizabeth’s.

  135. Leonora Will's Gravatar Leonora Will
    February 28, 2020 - 11:56 pm | Permalink

    Sorry. Strike the unnecessary apostrophe.

  136. February 29, 2020 - 12:05 am | Permalink

    Lots of positive thoughts about Elizabeth, and Andrew as well. The choice was hard but I finally decided on Elizabeth due to her unconditional love, her graciousness toward a little cousin pregnant, unwed at the time, and in need of an accepting family member who would not judge but who would accept, and perhaps allow her to chat, and obtain advice as well on being a Mom to be- especially as she was experiencing her own miracle birth. She was to be the Mom to be of John the Baptist. She also would have to have been able to be very strong as well to be able to handle and accept her son’s non-conformity, his lifestyle and eating things like locusts, and honey as well as his firey preaching in opening the door for the birth of Christ yet to come.

  137. February 29, 2020 - 10:20 am | Permalink

    Thanks for doing this! It’s a welcome respite from the rest of my daily inbox.

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