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Saint Joanna

Saint Joanna
  • Century: 1st Century
  • Patronage: -
  • Feast Day: May 24th

Joanna is a woman mentioned in the Gospels who was healed by Jesus, and later supported him and his disciples in their travels.  She was the wife of Chuza, who managed the household of Herod Antipas, the King of Galilee.  Her name means, “Yahweh has been gracious”.  In the Orthodox and Roman Catholic traditions, she is a saint.  She is considered to be a very caring woman who cared for Jesus and the Apostles.  In the Bible, she is one of the women recorded in the Gospel of Luke as accompanying Jesus and the Twelve Apostles, “Mary, called Magdalene, and Joanna the wife of Herod’s steward Chuza, and Susanna, and many others, who provided for them out of their resources”.  

Considering that there are 13 separate references to Herod in the Gospel of Luke, and only 4 of which can also be found in the other Gospels, this means that there are nine references to Herod in the Gospel of Luke, for which Luke had to have a source independent of another Gospel.  Some scholars believe that it was Joanna that informed Jesus and Luke of the splendid style in which Herod and his court officials lived.  Joanna may have also been one of the eyewitnesses available to Luke as a source for his Herodian material for his Gospel.  

Joanna is among the group of women who are the first resurrection witnesses, along with Mary Magdalene, Mary the mother of James and other women, Luke 24:10.  These women went to the Apostles who thought their testimony about the risen Lord was nonsense, although Peter and some others decided to look at the tomb for themselves.  Joanna is therefore to be included in the “ones with them” that Jesus calls “witnesses”, Luke 24:48.  In Acts 1:13-14, “And when they were come in, they went up into an upper room, where abode Peter and John, James and Andrew, Philip and Thomas, Bartholomew and Matthew, James of Alpheus, and Simon Zelotes, and Jude the brother of James.  All these were persevering with one mind in prayer with the women, and Mary the mother of Jesus, and with his brethren”.  She is among the group of “women” that were with the Twelve, praying with one mind.  

There was an “Ossuary” that was discovered bearing the inscription, “Johanna, granddaughter of Theophilus, the High Priest”.  It is believed that this Johanna is the same one mentioned in the Bible.  

Practical Take Away

Joanna is a woman mentioned in the Gospels who was healed by Jesus, and later supported him and his disciples in their travels.  She was the wife of Chuza, who managed the household of Herod Antipas, the King of Galilee.  Her name means, “Yahweh has been gracious”.  In the Orthodox and Roman Catholic traditions, she is a saint.  She is considered to be a compassionate woman who cared for Jesus and the Apostles, during their ministry.  In the Bible, she is one of the women recorded in the Gospel of Luke as accompanying Jesus and the Twelve Apostles, “Mary, called Magdalene, and Joanna the wife of Herod’s steward Chuza, and Susanna, and many others, who provided for them out of the resources”.