Lives of Saints and Blesseds

July 9
St. Adrian, Martyr, * c. 1528, † July 9, 1572
and St. James Lacoupe, Martyr, * c. 1542, † July 9, 1572

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.

Lord, our God, who caused Your holy martyrs Adrian, James, and their companions to persevere to the end; make us remain in You in faith and charity and pursue the unity of the Church. We ask this through our Lord Jesus Christ, Your Son, Who lives and reigns with You in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God forever and ever. Amen.