Apostles – Wikipedia
In Christian theology and ecclesiology, the apostles (Greek: ἀπόστολος, translit. apóstolos, lit. ‘one who is sent away’), particularly the Twelve Apostles, were the primary disciples of Jesus, the central figure in Christianity. During the life and ministry of Jesus in the 1st century AD, the apostles were his closest followers and became the primary teachers of the gospel message of Jesus. The word disciple is sometimes used interchangeably with apostle; for instance, the Gospel of John makes no distinction between the two terms. In modern usage, prominent missionaries are often called apostles, a practice which stems from the Latin equivalent of apostle, i.e. missio, the source of the English word missionary. For example, Saint Patrick (AD 373–463) was the “Apostle of Ireland”, and Saint Boniface (680–755) was the “Apostle to the Germans”.