- First Marian Apparition to St James the Greater in Spain while Mary living in Jerusalem (Ephesus?) 40 AD
James, cf Mystical City of God by Venerable Mary of Agreda pg 666, 668, 692 – 697
From Mary’s Assumption Episode 4
Claims made for two cities
Two cities, Jerusalem and Ephesus (in present-day Turkey), claim to be the place where the Virgin Mary died. The Ephesus claim rests in part on the Gospel account that Christ on his cross entrusted the care of Mary to St John (who later went to Ephesus).
Apostles at the death of Mary, in the Church of the Dormition (Seetheholyland.net)
But the earliest traditions all locate the end of Mary’s life in Jerusalem, where the Tomb of Mary is venerated at the foot of the Mount of Olives.
Accounts of Mary’s death in Jerusalem appear in early sources such as De Orbitu S. Dominae, TransitusMariae and Liber Requiei Mariae. These books are described as apocryphal (meaning “hidden” or “secret”). Their authenticity is uncertain and they are not accepted as part of the Christian canon of Scripture.
But, according to biblical scholar Lino Cignelli, “All of them are traceable back to a single primitive document, a Judaeo-Christian prototype, clearly written within the mother church of Jerusalem some time during the second century, and, in all probability, composed for liturgical use right at the Tomb of Our Lady.
“From the earliest times, tradition has assigned the authorship of the prototype to one Lucius Carinus, said to have been a disciple and fellow labourer with St John the Evangelist.”
By the reckoning of Transitus Mariae, Mary would have been aged no more than 50 at the time of her death.
Early writers favour Jerusalem
The early sources are summarised in this way by the Catholic Encyclopedia:
“The apocryphal works of the second to the fourth century are all favourable to the Jerusalem tradition. According to the Acts of St John by Prochurus, written (160-70) by Lencius, the Evangelist went to Ephesusaccompanied by Prochurus alone and at a very advanced age, i.e. after Mary’s death.
“The two letters B. Inatii missa S. Joanni, written about 370, show that the Blessed Virgin passed the remainder of her days at Jerusalem. That of Dionysius the Areopagite to the Bishop Titus (363), the Joannis liber de Dormitione Mariae (third to fourth century), and the treatise De transitu B.M. Virginis (fourth century) place her tomb at Gethsemane . . . .
“There was never any tradition connecting Mary’s death and burial with the city of Ephesus.”
Mary is an embodiment of the new Jerusalem
Regardless of one’s opinion, it is clear that Mary was not in Spain
More surprising, hadn’t appeared immediately, constant maternal care, first moment of Assumption and throughout her life.
 Wincenty Laszewski, World of Marian Apparitions: From Fatima to Today (Sophia Institute Press: Manchester NH 2021) vii
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