The James whose Feast we celebrate today is the brother of John, both of them sons of Zebedee. Together with Peter and John, he was a witness to the Transfiguration and he was also present in Gethsemane during our Lord’s Agony.

He was also the first of the Apostles to die, being beheaded on the orders of King Agrippa. The site of his martyrdom is traditionally located in what is today the Armenian Quarter of the Old City of Jerusalem, within the Armenian Apostolic Cathedral.

May he pray for us, in the challenges of our own time, and may God bless you.