Adrian Jansen with the epithet “Becan”, because he was from Hilvarenbeek
(Brabant), entered the Premonstratensian Abbey of Middelburg in the Netherland’s
Province of Zeeland in 1544. He worked as novice master and chaplain. Around
1560 he became pastor in Agterkerke and in 1572 pastor of Monster. Adrian was
a model minister in his parish which already included several Calvinists. In
1572 the “Geusen” attacked the parish house and abducted Adrian
and his confrere James Lacoupe, who worked as assistant in Monster. An Augustinian
and a Dominican, eleven Franciscans and four diocesan priests suffered the same
fate. With beating, insults and the screaming of the crowd they were forced
to go through the streets and undergo severe interrogation during which they
defended the real presence of the Eucharist and the primacy of the papacy. They
were refused food, mistreated and cruelly tortured; finally they were brought
to Gorcum (today: Gorinchem) and hanged.
James Lacoupe, from Oudenaarde (Flanders), was also a canon of Middelburg Abbey. In 1566 he went over to the Reformation, became a protestant pastor and wrote against the Catholic Church. His father and his brother, who was likewise a Premonstratensian of Middelburg, were able to convince him to return to his monastery a few months later. After five years of penance in the Abbey of Marienweerd, Abbot Nicholas van den Burcht assigned him to the position of assistant in Monster in 1572. Together with his pastor Adrian Jansens he suffered a martyr’s death on July 9, 1572.
Relics of the Martyrs of Gorcum: Gorcum, Brussels and Averbode
Approbation of cult: November 24, 1675 by Clement X and June 29, 1867 by Pius IX.
Representation: as Premonstratensians, with a noose, at the gallows, with a tiara, a chalice, a monstrance, a book and palm of victory.