James, apostle - May 3rd
St James the Less – The cousin of the Lord and the son of Alphaeus. He is considered the first Bishop of Jerusalem and suffered martyrdom in 62 AD.
(Relics: Rome, Italy; Jerusalem, Israel)
First Class Relics
Santi Apostoli (Holy Apostles)
Piazza dei Santi Apostoli 51
*This church is just east of Piazza Venezia.
*Relics of St Philip and St James the Less rest within the confessio of this church. During the 6th century they were transferred from Constantinople to Rome by Pope Pelagius I (d. 561). In 1873, as excavations commenced below the central altar, their relics were unearthed. They were then carefully examined and repositioned within the confessio where they rest today.
*Also the painting above the main altar depicts the martyrdom of St Philip and St James the Less. It was completed by Domenico Maria Muratori in the early 18th century.
St James Cathedral
91190 Jerusalem, Israel
*St James the Less is purportedly buried next to his reputed throne on the left side of the main sanctuary. This is the large chair below the onion-shaped baldacchino.
*The head of St James the Greater is said to rest under a small circular piece of red marble located within the third chapel on the left side of the nave. This chapel is also said to mark the location of his martyrdom.
*Access to this church is limited. It is generally open for only forty minutes during the Vigil service at the 3pm hour.
Tomb of the Sons of Hezir
*This tomb was traditionally attributed to St James the Less. However, recent scholarship concludes that is was constructed to honor of a Jewish priestly family in the 2nd century BC.