When Jesus’ disciple Judas went down to the injurious sin of betraying Jesus, he turned not to the tree on which Jesus was hanged, but to his own hanging tree. In his place Matthias was tapped to fill out the roster and bring the team of disciples up to full strength.
After Jesus’ ascension, about 120 of Jesus’ followers were gathered when Peter brought up the need to, “Let another take his (Judas) office.”
Peter set out the qualifications. The new number 12, must have been with them from the time when John was baptizing. Two candidates were nominated; Joseph, nicknamed Barsabbas, and Matthias. The disciples prayed that the Lord would show them which one He had chosen. The lot fell on Matthias.
We know little of Matthias beyond what we have in Acts 1. Tradition places his missionary work in Ethiopia. The LCMS follows the old tradition of remembering Matthias on February 24. The Roman Catholic Church moved the day to May 14 so that it fell nearer the time of the Ascension and Pentecost. Other church bodies have followed suit.
We, the church, might well see ourselves as the 13th disciple, that through the impelling power of the Holy Spirit we move out of our Temples into world in need of witness to the resurrection.