Sunday, March 29, 2020

Saints for Today: James of the Marches, Religious (1391-1476)

Must Read

A History of the Old Mining Missions in Cibola County NM, Part 1

By Sr. Ellen Corcoran, SCSJA and Elizabeth Kelley Our Lady of Sorrows, Seboyeta (Cebolleta), NM The following history is by Elizabeth...

“Ojo de Gallo”: A Nostalgic Narrative of San Rafael

This “nostalgic narrative of historic San Rafael” by Josephine Barela is being published posthumously by her friends, Margaret and...

“Bringing us closer to God”: Glenwood parish introduces Mass “Ad Orientem”

Inspired by Bishop Wall's example, the priest and parishioners in Glenwood, NM have instituted a Mass "Ad Orientem".
Dr. Jean Lee
Jean M. Lee, M.A., D.Min., is a licensed behavioral health and substance abuse counselor, founding a nonprofit, state-licensed behavior health counseling agency and Christian gift/book store. Volunteer work includes: Jail ministry, Legion of Mary membership, door-to-door evangelization, and writing a weekly newspaper column titled “Faith and Inspiration: Encyclopedia of Saints for Today.” A Catholic revert after 32 years away from the Church, she is devout in the Catholic faith, loves the saints, and lives a deeper spiritual/religious and more joyful life since returning to the Church.

Feast Day: November 28

Born James Gangala of a poor family in the march (or territory) or Ancona, Italy, James was a Franciscan friar and missionary who spent forty years as an evangelist throughout Italy. He joined the Franciscans at Assisi, studied under Bernardino at Fiesole, and later read law at Perugia, Italy.

James led a life of exemplary sanctity and set up enterprises to help the poor. He adopted a very penitential life-style and became a most effective preacher in and outside his homeland. His frequent fasting, denial of sleep, and wearing a threadbare habit were joined with an extreme zeal for souls. He was among the most active Franciscan preachers and missionaries of the Latter Middle Ages. He traveled widely across Italy as well as across much of central Europe and Scandinavia. He was also active in attempting, unsuccessfully, to reconcile with the Church, the more moderate Hussites of Hungary. He similarly strove to bring about close relations between Rome and the Greek Orthodox Church.

James’ life was controversial and perhaps best known for his role as inquisitor against the heretical Fraticelli, a breakaway group of Franciscans who, taking literally St. Francis’ strictures on poverty, objected violently to the wealth of the Church. James was involved in disputes between branches of the Franciscan Order, exacerbated by the addition of heretical elements to the Fraticelli who had already been condemned by the papacy. Some criticized James for being too severe and ruthless against them. Later he preached against the Bogomils in Bosnia and in several of these controversies, he had assisted John of Capistrano, whom he succeeded as papal legate in Hungary.

His denouncement to the Inquisition at Brescia in 1462 clouded James’ later years. He held unorthodox views on the divine nature of Christ’s blood after His death. Controversies between Dominicans and Franciscans followed, until the Holy See, after an inconclusive disputation, imposed silence on both parties. In 1473, James was moved to Naples. Here he died, and was buried in the church of Santa Maria Nuova. He was canonized a saint in 1726.

Bunson, Matthew, Margaret Bunson, and Stephen Bunson. “Encyclopedia of Saints-Revised.” Indiana: Our Sunday Visitor, 2003.
Farmer, David. “Oxford Dictionary of Saints.” New York: Oxford University Press, 2011.
Heritage, Andrew, ed. “The Book of Saints: A Day-By-Day Illustrated Encyclopedia.” San Francisco: Weldonowen, 2012.

Featured Photo: Wikimedia Commons




Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Latest News


Podcast: Make This Lenten Season the Most Fruitful One Yet!

How to make this your most prayerful Lent ever, whether you're just now kickstarting your prayer life or have a solid spiritual life already.


Other recent stories:

Diocese Releases Guidance for Preventing Spread of Illness, Coronavirus

The Diocese is now issuing several extra measures and requests with the advent of COVID-19.

CC067: Meeting the Pope Face to Face

The bishop visits the "threshold" of the Apostles, and the Pope as the successor of St. Peter.


"The true apology of Christian faith...[is] the saints and the beauty that the faith has generated."

Diocese rolls out plans for new Sacred Heart Cathedral School buildings

The future plans for Sacred Heart School primarily include building a brand-new school on the parish grounds of Sacred Heart Cathedral and selling the current campus and buildings.


More Articles Like This