The Book of James -- Protevangelium


I have read this book. At least the first half of it, and I am wondering if anyone else has.

It is one of the agnostic writings, and from what I understand the one main problem with the book and the big reason it was excluded from canon was because the first half of the book focuses too much on Mary’s parents, and not Jesus.

Is it wrong to discuss the writings in this book? I found it fascinating in that it discusses the conception of Mary. The relationship between Mary’ s parents, Saint Ann and her husband Ioacim. It is interesting how it develops. How there is a very direct parallel to how Ann came to be pregnant and Elizabeth. Very similar stories.

How Mary was kept and protected during her early years. How she was seen as a blessing. Also, how Joseph was chosen and betrothed to her.

Actually pretty humorous.

Anyone else read the book?


Yes I have read it for my Mariology class. We discussed how some of it seems a little far out ie- Mary dancing after her presentation in the temple. Hehe. I think it’s more a devotional thing than scriptural… As it’s not part of the Canon and seen as inspired Scripture.


Just a correction, if you don’t mind. The word is gnostic, not agnostic. An agnostic is a person who holds that the existence of God is unknowable or unknown. Of course, it might just be a typo on your part, in which case I apologize for the correction.

I have read this, but am not qualified to really discuss it. There is not any harm in reading it for knowledge about it, but in my mind, it does not seem to be as believable as the canonical books and is rather fanciful.

closed #4

DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit