The Seventy Apostles or Seventy-two Apostles[note 1] are those whom the Lord chose, in addition to the original Twelve Apostles, to go before Him into the cities He would visit (Luke 10:1), and lay down the groundwork and infrastructure for the Early Church. According to the Gospel of Luke, the only gospel in which they appear (Luke 10:1–24), Jesus appointed them and sent them out in pairs to preach the gospel. The Twelve generally remained at Christ's side, serving as witnesses to His life; but the Seventy preceded Him in every place He visited.
The Synaxis of the Seventy Apostles is commemorated on January 4 and was established by the Orthodox Church to indicate the equal honor of each of the Seventy. Besides the celebration of the Synaxis of the Holy Apostles, the Church also celebrates the memory of each of them during the course of the year. The Church in particular venerates and praises the Seventy Apostles because they taught us to honor the Trinity One in Essence and Undivided.
Hippolytus of Rome (+235) had produced an early list of the Seventy Apostles, however it was regarded as dubious, and was put in the Appendix of his works in the voluminous collection of Early Church Fathers. Dorotheus of Tyre (+362) traditionally is the one credited with recounting the names of the Seventy Apostles. These names were also given in the Chronicon Paschale, a 7th-century Byzantine universal chronicle of the world. However there were errors in the list attributed to Saint Dorotheus, including the repetition of four names, the omission of other names, and the inclusion of some men who were Apostles at first, but later fell from the faith and the dignity of their office.
4 january: Forefeast of the Theophany of Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ; Synaxis of the Holy Seventy Apostles; Martyr Djan Darada, the Ethiopian eunuch of Queen Candace (1st c.); Martyrs Chrysanthus and Euthymia; Martyrs Zosimas the Hermit and Athanasius the Commentarisius (prison warden), anchorites of Cilicia (3rd-4th c.); Venerable Theoprobus of Karpasia, Bishop of Karpasia in Cyprus (4th c.); Righteous Apollinaria the Senator (5th c.); Venerable Evagrius (Evargresi, fellow-ascetic of St. Shio of Mgvime), with St. Elias the Deacon, and other Disciples of the Thirteen Syrian Fathers, of the Shio-Mgvime Monastery in Georgia (6th c.); The Holy Six Martyrs; Saint Euthymius the Younger of Thessalonica (Euthymius the New), monk; Venerable Timothy the Stylite (872); Saint Linus, the first Pope of Rome (ca.76) (in the East: Jan 4 and Nov 5); Saint Clement I, one of the Seventy Apostles, third Pope of Rome (ca.101) (in the East: Jan 4, Apr 22, Sept 10 and Nov 25); Saint Mavilus (Majulus), a martyr in Hadrumetum in North Africa, thrown to wild beasts at the time of Caracalla (212); Martyrs Priscus, Priscillian and Benedicta, in Rome (ca.361-363); Martyr Dafrosa (Affrosa), the mother of St Bibiana, martyred in Rome under Julian the Apostate (ca.361-363); Martyrs Aquilinus, Geminus, Eugene, Marcian, Quintus, Theodotus and Tryphon, in North Africa under the Arian Hunneric, King of the Vandals (ca.484); Saint Gregory of Langres, Bishop of Langres in Gaul, renowned for miracles (539-540); Saint Ferreolus of Uzès, Bishop of Uzès (581); Saint Pharäildis (Vareide, Verylde, Veerle), one of the patron-saints of Ghent (ca.740); Saint Rigobert, Archbishop of Rheims and Confessor (ca.745); Venerable Theoctistus of Sicily, Abbot at Cucomo (Coucouma, Coucoumis) in Sicily (800); Saint Libentius (Liäwizo I), born in Swabia in Germany, became Bishop of Hamburg in 988 (1013); Venerable Hieromartyr Abbot Euthymius, and 12 Monk-martyrs of Vatopedi Monastery, on Mt. Athos, who suffered martyrdom for denouncing the Latinizing rulers Michael Paleologos and John Bekkos as heretics (ca.1285); Repose of St. Eustathius I of Serbia (Eustace of Serbia, Jevstatije I), first Archbishop of Serbia (1286); Saint Aquila (Aquilae, Achillios), Deacon of the Kiev Caves Monastery (14th c.); Venerable Symeon of Smolensk, Metropolitan of Smolensk (1699); New Monk-martyr Onuphrius Manassias of Gabrovo and Chilandar Monastery, Mt. Athos, on Chios (1818); Saint Nikiforos the Leper (1964); New Hieromartyr Alexander, Bishop; New Martyr Uvelicius; New Martyr Amma; New Hieromartyr Alexander Yuzefovitch, Priest, at Alma-Ata (1921); New Hieromartyr Philip Gregoriev, Protopresbyter, at Alma-Ata (1933); New Hieromartyr Stephen, Priest (1933); New Hieromartyr Nicholas Maslov, Priest, at Alma-Ata (1939); New Hieromartyr Paul, Priest (1941); Other commemorations: Finding of the holy relics (January 4, 1974) of New Martyr John the ex-Muslim of Konitsa (John of Ioannina) († September 23, 1814), in the Holy Monastery of Prousou in Evrytania, Greece.