St. James the Less Novena

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St. James the Less was one of Jesus’ twelve Apostles. He was also the author of the Catholic Epistle of James. 

Tradition holds that St. James the Less was a bishop of Jerusalem. He was also martyred for his Faith.

You can use this novena to seek intercession from this holy Apostle in your life!

About St. James the Less 

St. James the Less was given the title “the Less” to distinguish him from Jesus’ other Apostle, St. James the Greater. The titles likely had to do with the height of the two Apostles. St. James the Less is also sometimes called, “the Lesser,” “the Minor,” “the Little,” or “the Younger.”

St. James the Less was most likely the same James as the son of Alpheus mentioned in Scripture. Many scholars also agree that he was James the “brother” of Jesus mentioned in the Gospels. His mother was a close relative of the Blessed Mother.

James the Less was also the brother of the Apostle St. Jude. Scripture does not tell us many details about James the Less during Jesus’ life, but the New Testament writings of St. Paul mention him in multiple places. 

St. James the Less held a position of high regard in the early Church. St. Paul consulted with him, and James was considered one of the “pillars” of the Church.

Tradition says that James was the first bishop of Jerusalem, and that he was present at the Council of Jerusalem in the year 50 A.D.

St. James the Less was also the author of the Catholic Epistle of St. James. There is a lot of internal evidence in the Epistle itself to point to James’ authorship. The language, style, and the indications that the author was a Jew who knew both the Old Testament teachings and the teachings of Christianity all point to James the Less as the author. Early Church Fathers also confirmed that St. James the Less was the author through external evidence. The Epistle was probably written around the year 49 A.D.

In his Epistle, James addresses Christians outside of Palestine, but he was most likely thinking of non-Jewish Christians as well. The Epistle discusses difficulties and temptations for Christians living amidst paganism. He devotes most of the text to practical advice for Christian living, and he attempts to guide them in the Faith as a spiritual father. 

Several extra-canonical documents also mention James the Less. A Jewish Christian named Hegesippus wrote that James was called “the Just.” Hegesippus mentions that James drank no alcohol, at no meat, did not cut his hair, and did not anoint himself or take baths.

According to the historian Eusebius and Hegesippus, St. James was martyred by Jews on account of his Christian Faith in the year 62. 

St. James the Less’ Feast Day: May 3rd

Why Pray the St. James the Less Novena?

St. James the Less is the patron saint of pharmacists, druggists, and apothecaries. You can ask him to pray for you if you are a pharmacist or work in the pharmaceutical industry. You can also ask him or pray for anyone you know who is a pharmacist or who works in the pharmaceutical industry.

St. James the Less is also the patron saint of hat makers. You can seek his intercession for yourself or someone you know who works in the hat-making industry.

Additionally, St. James the Less is the patron saint of dying people. You can ask him to pray for you as you approach death, or you can ask him to pray for a dying person you know.

You can pray the St. James the Less Novena for any intention!

St. James the Less Novena Prayers

St. James the Less Novena - Day 1

In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. 

Amen.

Dear Lord, we thank You for giving us Your Apostle, St. James the Less, as an example of holiness. Help us to imitate the close friendship with You that he grew in after You called him to be Your Apostle.

St. James the Less, you were one of twelve men called by Jesus for the mission of being His Apostles. Though we know few details about your life during the time of Christ’s public ministry, we know that you were a close friend of Jesus.

Please bring my petitions before Christ, your Divine Friend!

After Jesus ascended into Heaven, you lived out your devotion to Him by becoming a bishop and serving the Church.

Pray for me, that I may grow in my relationship with Jesus each day. Pray that I may grow in true friendship with Jesus in my life.

Please also pray for (mention your intentions here).

St. James the Less, pray for us!

In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. 

Amen.

St. James the Less Novena - Day 2

In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. 

Amen.

Dear Lord, we thank You for giving us Your Apostle, St. James the Less, as an example of holiness. Help us to imitate the love of You he showed throughout his life.

St. James the Less, we know few details about your early life. But you were referred to as the “Brother of Jesus” and were probably a close relative of Jesus’ Blessed Mother.

Please bring my petitions before the throne of God!

You served Christ as His Apostle during His earthly ministry. After Jesus ascended into Heaven, you continued in this service to God by becoming the first bishop of Jerusalem.

Pray for me, that I may grow in holiness and the desire to serve God each day of my life. Pray that I may always look to the example of the Blessed Mother as I strive to become holy.

Please also pray for (mention your intentions here).

St. James the Less, pray for us!

In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. 

Amen.

St. James the Less Novena - Day 3

In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. 

Amen.

Dear Lord, we thank You for giving us Your Apostle, St. James the Less, as an example of holiness. Help us to imitate the virtue with which he served You throughout his life.

St. James the Less, you were given the title of “the Less” to distinguish you from another Apostle, St. James the Greater. Despite your humble title, you accomplished many great things for God throughout your life.

Please continue to bring my petitions before God Whom you served so devotedly!

You served Jesus as His Apostle during His public ministry. After the Ascension, you selflessly served the early Church as the first bishop of Jerusalem.

Pray for me, that I grow in virtue each day. Pray that I may always be ready to render humble and selfless service to God in my life, as you did.

Please also pray for (mention your intentions here).

St. James the Less, pray for us!

In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. 

Amen.

St. James the Less Novena - Day 4

In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. 

Amen.

Dear Lord, we thank You for giving us Your Apostle, St. James the Less, as an example of holiness. Help us to imitate the devotion to You he showed in his decision to follow You and his lifetime of service to Your Church.

St. James the Less, you chose to follow Christ when he called you to be His Apostle. You served Him faithfully throughout His public ministry.

Please bring my petitions before Jesus Whom you served so faithfully!

You were present with Christ when He established the priesthood at the Last Supper. You willingly chose to serve Him as His priest and later as the bishop of Jerusalem. 

Pray for me, that I may be eager to serve God in whatever ways He might call me to. Pray that I may never waver in my devotion to God.

Please also pray for (mention your intentions here).

St. James the Less, pray for us!

In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. 

Amen.

St. James the Less Novena - Day 5

In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. 

Amen.

Dear Lord, we thank You for giving us Your Apostle, St. James the Less, as an example of holiness. Help us to imitate the love of You he showed in his faithful service to Your Church as the first bishop of Jerusalem.

St. James the Less, you served Christ faithfully during His public ministry. After He ascended into Heaven, you continued serving Him by becoming the first bishop of Jerusalem.

Please bring my petitions before God Whom you served with such devotion!

You served as bishop of Jerusalem during a very tumultuous time in the early Church. Despite uncertainties and internal conflicts, you faithfully shepherded your people.

Pray for me, that I may be as eager to serve God and His Church as you were. Pray that I may never waver in my commitment to God.

Please also pray for (mention your intentions here).

St. James the Less, pray for us!

In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. 

Amen.

St. James the Less Novena - Day 6

In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. 

Amen.

Dear Lord, we thank You for giving us Your Apostle, St. James the Less, as an example of holiness. Help us to imitate the devotion to You he showed in his work writing the Epistle of St. James.

St. James the Less, you addressed your Epistle to Christians living outside of Palestine. You wrote about temptations and difficulties, seeking to lead others to live holier lives.

Please continue to bring my petitions before the throne of God!

Under the direction of the Holy Spirit, you attempted to guide others as a spiritual father through your writing. You gave practical advice for avoiding temptations while living among pagans, and your writings have guided many on their spiritual journey. 

Pray for me, that I may never miss the opportunity to lead others closer to God. Pray that I may be eager to do all I can to lead souls to God. 

Please also pray for (mention your intentions here).

St. James the Less, pray for us!

In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. 

Amen.

St. James the Less Novena - Day 7

In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. 

Amen.

Dear Lord, we thank You for giving us Your Apostle, St. James the Less, as an example of holiness. Help us to imitate the virtue he showed in working to instruct others in how to best withstand temptations amidst worldly influence.

St. James the Less, you wrote the Catholic Epistle of James under the guidance of the Holy Spirit. You attempted to give Christians practical advice while they lived among pagans, so that they might better serve God.

Please bring my petitions before God Whom you served so faithfully!

Though your Epistle was addressed to Christians in a particular time, your words are spiritually beneficial even to Christians living in the world today.

Pray for me, that I may always be strong in the midst of temptations. Pray that I may grow in holiness each day.

Please also pray for (mention your intentions here).

St. James the Less, pray for us!

In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. 

Amen.

St. James the Less Novena - Day 8

In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. 

Amen.

Dear Lord, we thank You for giving us Your Apostle, St. James the Less, as an example of holiness. Help us to imitate the virtue he showed in courageously holding fast to his Faith even to the point of death.

St. James the Less, you spent your life in faithful service to Jesus and His Church. After years serving as the first bishop of Jerusalem, you were martyred for your Faith.

Please continue to bring my petitions before God Whom you served so wholeheartedly!

You probably could have spared your life by renouncing your Christian Faith. But instead you courageously faced death out of love for God and His Church.

Pray for me, that I may always practice my Faith with courage. Pray that I may hold fast to my Faith even to the point of death if necessary.

Please also pray for (mention your intentions here).

St. James the Less, pray for us!

In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. 

Amen.

St. James the Less Novena - Day 9

In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. 

Amen.

Dear Lord, we thank You for giving us Your Apostle, St. James the Less, as an example of holiness. Help us to imitate the devotion to You he showed in his lifetime of service to You and Your Church.

St. James the Less, you became the first bishop of Jerusalem after Jesus ascended into Heaven. You served the Church and cared for your flock faithfully for many years.

Please continue to bring my petitions before God Whom you served so faithfully!

You were present at the Council of Jerusalem, and you shepherded your people through many uncertainties in the early days of the Church.

Pray for me, that I may be as eager to serve God and His Church as you were. Pray that I may always be eager to put my gifts to use serving the Church.

Please also pray for (mention your intentions here).

St. James the Less, pray for us!

In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. 

Amen.