James Ossuary


Has anyone been following the James Ossuary story? I was curious if anyone had any opinions on the latest analysis done by the respected German scientist Dr. Krumbein in which he found traces of the patina within the purported “forged” portions of the inscription “James, son of Joseph, brother of Jesus”. His opinion is that the IAA grossly misconducted their analysis and that the ossuary is in fact genuine, and the inscription is not the work of a modern day forgery.

If this ossuary turns out to be genuine, and it is appearing that it might. Would this affect your faith or belief in Catholic doctrine in any way? Does it matter that the Church has “pushed” the cousin theory throughout its history, and this would clearly insinuate either a blood or step brother relationship? I certainly don’t think the teaching of Mary’s perpetual virginity is at risk because, afterall, the Protoevangelium of James and the Gospel of Peter both talk of siblings of Jesus being born of Joseph from a previous marriage.

However, one of the Catholic defenses lies in the fact that Jesus gave his mother to John at the foot of the cross. What is the reason that he would give her to John if he had brothers and immediate family to care for her? We know that James took over the leadership of the Jerusalem Church following the resurrection and ascension. We also know that another of Jesus’ brothers took over leadership after James’ martyrdom in 62AD. If Joseph had other sons and daughters, wouldn’t they be obligated to care for Mary? It seems that James should have been the one to take on those duties, especially since he was leading the Church in Jerusalem. Why give Mary to John if James is the stepbrother of Jesus and son of Joseph?

Thoughts on any of this?


So the ossuary that was deemed a forgery by a commitee of experts is somehow refuted by some guy from germany?

I smell something…


Dr. Krumbein is reputed to be the world’s leading expert on stone patinas and related geochemistry. He would in fact be much more qualified than the IAA’s team of scientists that did the original analysis.


Also, I want to be clear that the Catholic Church has never officially ruled either way on the “cousin” or “step siblings” theory, but they have certainly seemed to strongly lean toward the cousin theory. Both are technically compatible with current Catholic doctrine, but the cousin theory holds up better to scrutiny. (In my opinion.) This theory would be undermined if the ossuary turns out to be genuine.


What does it prove?

James was called “brother of the Lord”. No one refutes this. Just because there is an ossuary that says, “James, brother of our Lord” proves exactly what?


Exactly!:smiley: There’s no way to differentiate brothers and cousins. There’s no DNA evidence, so the inscriptions are presumably the issue.


No link to a news story. Thread closed.

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