St James TG History
The feast day of James the Greater in the Roman Catholic Church commemorates the life of Jesus' disciple. He was considered to be one of the inner circle of Jesus' followers because he witnessed the transfiguration of Christ and the raising of Jairus' daughter from the dead.
James was among the three disciples to see the transfiguration of Jesus. He, Peter and John accompanied Jesus on a mountain where Jesus becomes radiant and is transfigured to light. The prophets Moses and Elijah appear and speak with Jesus (Matthew 17:1-9, Mark 9:2-8, Luke 9:28-36).
Of Jesus' 12 disciples, two were named James. This celebration centers on James the son of Zebedee, also known as James the greater. It is thought that he may have been older than James the Lesser, who may have been the brother of Jesus.
St James TG Facts
- New Testament readers first encounter James mending nets with his father, Zebedee, and his brother John. They were as dejected as their friends Simon and Andrew that they had caught nothing after a long night of fishing. Jesus directs Simon and Andrew to fish on the other side of the boat, and their nets nearly burst with all of the fish. They followed Jesus, then James and John accepted his invitation as well (Matthew 4:21-22, Mark: 1:19-20).
- James is the only one of the apostles whose martyrdom is recorded in the Bible. In Acts 12:1-2, Luke writes that James was executed with by sword by the order of King Herod in the year 44.
- James, Peter, and John also were the only disciples to witness the miracle of Jesus raising Jairus' daughter from the dead (Mark 5:37, Luke 8:51).
- Legend has it that James evangelized Spain. He is the patron saint of that country. Although it is unlikely that his remains are really there, Spanish Catholics believe his body is entombed in Compostela (northwestern Spain).
- The Feast of St. James the Greater is held in the Roman Catholic Church on July 25 and the Orthodox Church on April 30.
St James TG Top Events and Things to Do
- James is the patron saint of laborers. He received the designation because when Jesus called the disciple to follow him, James was working hard to mend his nets. Honor someone who works hard on his feast day in remembrance of St. James.
- Go see artwork featuring Saint James, including this painting at the Kimbell Art Museum in Fort Worth, Texas. The 13th century painting by Italian artist Fra Angelico depicts a legend in which the saint ordered Christian convert Philetus to release Hermogenes, an imprisoned and repentant magician.
- Go on the ancient pilgrimage to Compostela, Spain, to commemorate St. James on his feast day.