Jacapone da Todi vs. Ives of Kermartin

Today Jacapone da Todi squares off against Ives of Kermartin. Two lawyers in the same matchup? Who knew lawyers were even eligible for sainthood?! Will there be a legal landslide? Or will one of these attorneys be ruled out of order? In 24 hours we’ll announce the verdict.

Yesterday, despite a strong showing by Henriette Delille, Absalom Jones got past her 54% to 46% to make it to the Saintly Sixteen, where he’ll face Marianne Cope.

And if you’ve ever wondered about how the annual Lent Madness bracket is formulated, you won’t want to miss yesterday’s exciting episode of Monday Madness. Now go vote!

Jacapone da Todi
All the world is a stage, and God needs the highly dramatic to play a part. God found this person in Jacopone da Todi. Born around 1230 into a noble family, Jacomo became a successful lawyer and married a deeply religious woman. Jacomo was anything but deeply religious, instead concerned with attaining all the wealth he could, regardless of the human cost. His wife decided to atone for his sins by fasting and wearing clothing to signify her penance for his sins. She was killed in a tragic accident, and when Jacomo discovered his wife’s penitential practices on his behalf, he was shaken and stirred to focus his life on following God.

Following her death, he gave away all his possessions to the poor and entered a Franciscan Order as a layman and a wandering ascetic for almost a decade. During this time, Jacomo had some rather unusual prayer practices, including wearing a saddle, crawling on all fours, and appearing at a wedding tarred and feathered. Not surprisingly, he began to be known by the name Jacopone, which means “crazy Jim/James.”

Jacopone, a name he embraced, sought to be admitted to the Friars Minor, but given his reputation, they were cautious. In response, Jacopone composed a beautiful poem about the vanities of the world. His use of language, particularly in the vernacular of his region, not only led to his admission to the order in 1278, but he also left a legacy of elegant, prayerful language that remains with us today. He used his poetry to capture sorrow, condemn church corruption, call out kings and clergy for ignoring the welfare of the common people, and inspire the faithful.

Jacopone continued to be controversial and dramatic, managing to get himself excommunicated and imprisoned for being on the losing side of a reformation movement within the Franciscans. During his imprisonment, he composed the famous Latin Stabat Mater Dolorosa, a hymn that gives voice to Mary as she witnesses her son Jesus’ crucifixion, and is often sung on Good Friday in many Christian traditions.

At the end of his life, Jacopone retired to a convent of the Poor Clares. On Christmas Eve, in 1306, Jacopone sang a Christmas hymn, listened to the priest chant the Gloria at the beginning of midnight mass, and died.

Collect for Jacapone da Todi
O God, whose blessed Son became poor that we through his poverty might be rich: Deliver us from an inordinate love of this world, that we, inspired by the devotion of your servant Jacapone, may serve you with singleness of heart, and attain to the riches of the age to come; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.

—Laurie Brock

Ives of Kermartin
Ives lived, worked, and ministered in the thirtheenth century. As such, he could not have possibly known that he would have a lasting impact on the world, but he did, as evidenced by his nickname, Advocate of the Poor.

Ives is also known as Yves, Ivo, Yvo, Yves, Erwan, Iwan, Youenn, Eozenn, and Saint Ivo of Kermartin. He was a French priest and an important assistant to the bishop. He was also a lawyer, where he made his eternal mark.

Ives was born on October 17, 1253, in Brittany, France, the son of the lord of nearby Kermartin. After studying scripture, he was ordained in 1284 and served as a parish priest in Trédrez and Louannec, France. Ives studied civil law at the prestigious University of Paris and continued his education by studying canon law. He was known to lead a spartan life during his university years, focusing on learning, praying, and visiting the sick. Among his fellow students and colleagues was the great philosopher Roger Bacon.

Ives was tireless in his ministry of law. His life’s work was based on fairness, justice, providing dignity, and respecting the rights of all people, whether poor or rich, young or old, man or woman. He earned his title “Advocate of the Poor” for his defense of widows, orphans, and the poor.

Ives’s dedicated ministry sparked his appointment to the bishop’s staff, becoming an ecclesiastical judge while continuing his defense of poor people. Following a long career dedicated to both civil and church law, he died in 1303. Pope Clement VI canonized Ives in 1347. His feast is celebrated on May 19.

Ives is the patron saint of attorneys, legal professionals, paralegals, advocates, abandoned children, and the Brittany region in France. The honors live on, with numerous law schools and lawyers’ associations named for Saint Ives. He is often depicted with a money bag in his right hand, representing the assets he gave to the poor, and a scroll, signifying the law, in the other.

On his 700th birthday, Ives was honored with a tribute from Pope John Paul II: “The values proposed by Saint Ivo retain an astonishing timeliness. His concern to promote impartial justice and to defend the rights of the poorest persons invite the builders of Europe today to make every effort to ensure that the rights of all, especially the weakest, are recognized and defended.”

Collect for Ives of Kermartin
Almighty God, who gave to your servant Ives special gifts of grace to understand and teach the truth as it is in Christ Jesus: Grant that by this teaching, we may know you, the one true God, and Jesus Christ, whom you have sent; who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

—Neva Rae Fox


Jacapone da Todi vs. Ives of Kermartin

  • Ives of Kermartin (77%, 4,901 Votes)
  • Jacapone da Todi (23%, 1,447 Votes)

Total Voters: 6,348

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Jacapone da Todi: By Paolo Uccello – The Yorck Project (2002) 10.000 Meisterwerke der Malerei (DVD-ROM), distributed by DIRECTMEDIA Publishing GmbH. ISBN: 3936122202., Public Domain, (https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=159867)
Ives of Kermartin: Workshop of Rogier van der Weyden / Public domain

116 Comments to "Jacapone da Todi vs. Ives of Kermartin"

  1. John Cabot's Gravatar John Cabot
    March 9, 2021 - 8:01 am | Permalink

    A remarkable man was St. Ives
    (not the fellow who had seven wives).
    It was said everywhere
    That his verdicts most fair
    Brought some justice to fellow-men’s lives.

    • St. Celia's Gravatar St. Celia
      March 9, 2021 - 11:20 am | Permalink

      Today we vote for St. Ives
      whose work for the poor we believe
      upheld discarded kids,
      to pro quos refused quids,
      an avocat the match of any English reeve.

      • Susan Lee Hauser's Gravatar Susan Lee Hauser
        March 9, 2021 - 11:47 am | Permalink

        Yes, St. Celia! “Ives” and “believe”! Love your “quid pro quo” joke.

        • Anne Wrider's Gravatar Anne Wrider
          March 9, 2021 - 12:31 pm | Permalink

          But what about, “As I was going to St. Ives?” I met a man with seven Weeve? A puzzle.

          • St. Celia's Gravatar St. Celia
            March 9, 2021 - 1:01 pm | Permalink

            As I was going to St. Ives,
            I met a man with a seven-page c.v.
            He was applying for teaching jobs and buying beehives
            in order to support so many wives,
            feeding them honeycomb and steak from his herd of beeves.

    • Excel-_I-'s Gravatar Excel-_I-
      March 9, 2021 - 12:38 pm | Permalink


  2. Neva Rae Fox's Gravatar Neva Rae Fox
    March 9, 2021 - 8:08 am | Permalink

    I was impressed that the legacy of Ives lives on.

    • Verdery Kassebaum's Gravatar Verdery Kassebaum
      March 9, 2021 - 12:25 pm | Permalink

      Yes, Ms. Fox, there still are some good, compassionate lawyers out there, and my son is one of them. I would have voted for Ives, but the Vote button wasn’t there. Sigh!

  3. D Keane's Gravatar D Keane
    March 9, 2021 - 8:10 am | Permalink

    Crazy Jim is my kind of guy.

    • Amy Clayton's Gravatar Amy Clayton
      March 9, 2021 - 10:36 am | Permalink

      Indeed! The write up made me chuckle in delight.

    • Joann McKeeman's Gravatar Joann McKeeman
      March 9, 2021 - 12:07 pm | Permalink

      I agree! That I could be more like that!

  4. Ann's Gravatar Ann
    March 9, 2021 - 8:10 am | Permalink

    Gotta go with the composer of Stabat Mater Dolorosa — I’m thinking, Good Friday, Stations of the Cross. Another “miss” this year. #Covid

  5. Paul Strudwick's Gravatar Paul Strudwick
    March 9, 2021 - 8:20 am | Permalink

    Just curious about the anachronism … on the 700th birthday of Ives, the pope would not have been John Paul II.

    • Pat Phelps's Gravatar Pat Phelps
      March 9, 2021 - 8:50 am | Permalink

      Maybe the 700th anniversary of his ordination?

    • simple village priest's Gravatar simple village priest
      March 9, 2021 - 8:58 am | Permalink

      I googled: It was John Paul II, but in 2003, for the 750th anniversary of Ivo’s birth. But numerous RC sources (all derived from the same math-challenged Q source, no doubt) erroneously refer to his 700th birthday.

      • John Cabot's Gravatar John Cabot
        March 9, 2021 - 9:06 am | Permalink

        Nice catch, Paul! You have detected an error in the Wikipedia entry for Ives of Kermartin (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ivo_of_Kermartin) that was repeated in the saint’s writeup.

        The source cited in the Wikipedia article is John Paul II’s 5/13/2003 message to the bishop of Saint-Trieuc and Tréguier, which begins: “On 19 May 2003, the Diocese of Saint-Brieuc and Tréguier celebrates the seventh centenary of the dies natalis of Ivo Hélory of Kermartin, a son of Brittany.” (http://www.vatican.va/content/john-paul-ii/en/speeches/2003/may/documents/hf_jp-ii_spe_20030519_bishop-fruchaud.html)

        The phrase “dies natalis” can be literally translated as “date of birth”, but it is also used to mean “feast day” or “birth into heaven day”, i.e. date of death. St. Ives’ death was on 5/19/1303, so the 700th anniversary of his dies natalis would indeed be 5/19/2003.

        As discoverer, you may correct the Wikipedia article on Ives if you wish.

    • John Cabot's Gravatar John Cabot
      March 9, 2021 - 9:09 am | Permalink

      Nice catch, Paul. You have detected an error in the Wikipedia entry for Ives of Kermartin that was repeated in the saint’s writeup.

      The source cited in the Wikipedia article is John Paul II’s 5/13/2003 message to the bishop of Saint-Trieuc and Tréguier, which begins: “On 19 May 2003, the Diocese of Saint-Brieuc and Tréguier celebrates the seventh centenary of the dies natalis of Ivo Hélory of Kermartin, a son of Brittany.”

      The phrase “dies natalis” can be literally translated as “date of birth”, but it is also used to mean “feast day” or “birth into heaven day”, i.e. date of death. St. Ives’ death was on 5/19/1303, so the 700th anniversary of his dies natalis would indeed be 5/19/2003.

      • John Cabot's Gravatar John Cabot
        March 9, 2021 - 9:31 am | Permalink

        Sorry for the near-duplicate reply; the first post was marked “held for moderation” (its apparent sin: containing two URLs). When it disappeared altogether, I pruned it and reposted.

      • Paul Strudwick's Gravatar Paul Strudwick
        March 9, 2021 - 12:24 pm | Permalink

        Thank you, John Cabot – that clarifies it.

    • Beth's Gravatar Beth
      March 9, 2021 - 9:26 am | Permalink

      whatever the year Ives and I have the same earthly birthday.

      • Barbara Brooks's Gravatar Barbara Brooks
        March 9, 2021 - 2:23 pm | Permalink

        Me, too!

  6. Susan Erickson's Gravatar Susan Erickson
    March 9, 2021 - 8:21 am | Permalink

    As a retired lawyer I felt compelled to vote for Ives. Unlike the admittedly more colorful Jacapone, Ives continued to exercise his profession in the service of widows, orphans and the poor.

    • james's Gravatar james
      March 9, 2021 - 12:21 pm | Permalink

      I agreee

  7. Sarah P's Gravatar Sarah P
    March 9, 2021 - 8:22 am | Permalink

    Although a bit of a drama queen myself, the thought of a man who tirelessly and quietly works for justice for all was very appealing. I vote Ives.

  8. Jennifer Seaver's Gravatar Jennifer Seaver
    March 9, 2021 - 8:22 am | Permalink

    For a man whose name has many variations, he managed to bring his faith to life.

  9. Irene's Gravatar Irene
    March 9, 2021 - 8:23 am | Permalink

    I was leaning towards Jacapone, though I’m put off by zealots, simply because I love that hymn. But then I read about Ives and went with him instead because he was at University of Paris in the 14th century and, if we’re choosing between two lawyers, I voted for the better one. (Plus he was a legal Aid lawyer…. gotta give them props)

    • Margaret's Gravatar Margaret
      March 9, 2021 - 9:49 am | Permalink

      Jacapone lost me at wearing a saddle and walking on all fours as a prayer practice.

    • Anna's Gravatar Anna
      March 9, 2021 - 1:47 pm | Permalink

      The University of Bologna is even older than that of Paris, and was in the Middle Ages probably *the* most prestigious school for both civil and canon law in all of Europe (Paris didn’t formally offer civil law until the 1600s, I think.) So Jacopone was no slouch!

  10. Melanie's Gravatar Melanie
    March 9, 2021 - 8:24 am | Permalink

    A male saint who retired in a convent? My, what a year it’s been.

    Gotta vote with the social justice lawyer today.

  11. Joyce's Gravatar Joyce
    March 9, 2021 - 8:24 am | Permalink

    I have to vote for Ives as his values are relevant today.

  12. Susan C.'s Gravatar Susan C.
    March 9, 2021 - 8:25 am | Permalink

    I’m so tempted to vote for Jacapone da Todi, who after experiencing wealth and power, gave away all his wealth, lived to praise God, and penned the magnificant Stabat Mater which great musicians have put to music. Ives of Kermartin however gets my vote as a man who worked tirelessly for the poor, pursuing justice, mercy, dignity for all. We need his guidance today.

  13. Barbara Ross's Gravatar Barbara Ross
    March 9, 2021 - 8:28 am | Permalink

    I’m a choral singer, so my vote goes to the saint who wrote the deeply emotional hymn about the grieving mother that has been set to glorious music by Dvorak, Pergolesi and many others.

    • Martha Shea's Gravatar Martha Shea
      March 9, 2021 - 2:19 pm | Permalink

      Choir singer, here, too — and started singing Pergolesi Stabat Mater in fourth grade at St. James Birmingham, MI. Nonetheless I had to go with Ives and social justice.

  14. Vicar Mollie's Gravatar Vicar Mollie
    March 9, 2021 - 8:28 am | Permalink

    Ives is worthy!

  15. Elizabeth Bahlke's Gravatar Elizabeth Bahlke
    March 9, 2021 - 8:30 am | Permalink

    Ives, because he continued to serve as a lawyer. My church suffered three arson attacks last year. Despite arresting a suspect, there has been no prosecution. It seems there are no victim advocates when the victim is an entire congregation. Ives all the way for his pursuit of justice and the patron saint of advocates.

  16. Vern P.'s Gravatar Vern P.
    March 9, 2021 - 8:30 am | Permalink

    Ives. Nolo contendere.

    • Anne Madden's Gravatar Anne Madden
      March 9, 2021 - 11:11 am | Permalink

      You made me laugh out loud! Well done.

    • St. Celia's Gravatar St. Celia
      March 9, 2021 - 11:12 am | Permalink

      Stare decisis!

    • Tessa's Gravatar Tessa
      March 9, 2021 - 12:20 pm | Permalink

      Res ipsa loquitur.

  17. Beth's Gravatar Beth
    March 9, 2021 - 8:32 am | Permalink

    St Ives’ 700th birthday would have been in 1953. Pope John Paul II was not pope then. He was pope in 2003 on the 700th anniversary of St. Ives’ death.

  18. Judith Davita-Rauch's Gravatar Judith Davita-Rauch
    March 9, 2021 - 8:43 am | Permalink

    Ives got my vote! He worked tirelessly through his life, and the courts were the only way to get justice! And he the patron saint of abandoned babies… does that sound like the ultimate in saintlyness?!?

  19. Ruth Douglas Miller's Gravatar Ruth Douglas Miller
    March 9, 2021 - 8:45 am | Permalink

    I shall vote for Ives in honour of Bryan Stevenson, author of Just Mercy and founder of the Equal Justice Initiative eji.org, where the spirit of Ives lives on powerfully!

    • Carol Buckalew's Gravatar Carol Buckalew
      March 9, 2021 - 9:12 am | Permalink
    • Annie Woodley Brown's Gravatar Annie Woodley Brown
      March 9, 2021 - 4:38 pm | Permalink

      What a wonderful thought. I join you in this tribute. Bryan Stevenson carries on the tradition admirably.

  20. leyton's Gravatar leyton
    March 9, 2021 - 8:55 am | Permalink

    ives is wining yayayayayayya

  21. Gaen M.'s Gravatar Gaen M.
    March 9, 2021 - 9:05 am | Permalink

    I voted for Jacopone da Todi for several reasons not entirely emphasized in today’s brief biography. Jacopone was among the handful of Franciscans to remain true to Francis of Assisi’s witness of poverty and humility. Francis, as we know, being one of the few Christians ever to follow Jesus’s words and example to give up all your wealth and be a servant-minister. For that he and many of the “Spiritualists” were persecuted by the church hierarchy, including some of Francis’s original companions. Jacopone was excommunicated and imprisoned in a dungeon and it’s likely this imprisonment that led to his death shortly thereafter. He was a poet and along with the Stabat Mater Dolorosa, the equally stunning Stabat Mater Speciosa is attributed to him. It’s one of the most powerful Christmas poems/carols you’ll ever encounter: https://stabatmater.info/stabat-mater-translations-and-languages/stabat-mater-speciosa-latin-text/. English mystic Evelyn Underhill felt so in sync with Jacopone’s mysticism that she wrote a biography of him: https://www.forgottenbooks.com/en/books/JacoponeDaTodiPoetandMystic12281306_10531254. As you all likely know, in the last 5 or so years of his life, Francis lost control of his own order to a growing faction that wanted to claim his sanctity without truly following his example. Jacopone was born 4 years after Francis’s death. I honor him for reversing course in his pursuit of wealth and power (like Francis himself, who gave up the life of a wealthy merchant/wealthy merchant’s son), walking in Francis’s footsteps despite persecution (some were even burned as heretic’s), being a mystic, and writing the most powerful meditation on the Nativity I have yet to read.

    • Kate Mason's Gravatar Kate Mason
      March 9, 2021 - 11:17 am | Permalink

      Thank you, Gaen – I was leaning toward St. Ives, but this swayed me. I’m a choral singer at St. Francis Episcopal (at least, I was and expect to be again post-pandemic) – and these two things helped me decide to vote for Jacopone, though St. Ives’ example is compelling. Besides – I love a Holy Fool!

    • St. Celia's Gravatar St. Celia
      March 9, 2021 - 11:22 am | Permalink

      Wow, thank you, Gaen. I voted for Ives, but now you’ve inspired me to go break open my Evelyn Underhill texts and listen to the Stabat Mater. I was drawn to Jacopone’s gift for poetry.

    • March 9, 2021 - 11:51 am | Permalink

      I am finding the bios just a bare beginning at finding out about the saints in the bracket. So many people are so good at and motivated to dig even deeper that it is a blessing. Thank you Gaen for expanding so well on Jacopone. As a lover of words and music, I felt drawn to him at once. You have given me further blessing to feel comfortable with my choice. I shall have to listen to Stabat Mater Dolorosa at lunch today.

    • Carolyn Brown's Gravatar Carolyn Brown
      March 9, 2021 - 3:20 pm | Permalink

      I looked up the text to Stabat Mater Dolorosa
      ten prayed with the Stations of the Cross at Lent.

      At the cross her station keeping,
      Stood the mournful Mother weeping,
      Close to Jesus to the last.

      Through her heart, His sorrow sharing,
      All His bitter anguish bearing,
      Now at length the sword had passed.

      Oh, how sad and sore distressed
      Was that Mother highly blest,
      Of the sole begotten One!

      Christ above in torment hangs.
      She beneath beholds the pangs
      Of her dying glorious Son.

      Is there one who would not weep,
      Whelmed in miseries so deep,
      Christ’s dear Mother to behold?

      Can the human heart refrain
      From partaking in her pain,
      In that Mother’s pain untold?

      Bruised, derided, cursed, defiled,
      She beheld her tender Child,
      All with bloody scourges rent.

      For the sins of His own nation,
      Saw Him hang in desolation
      Till His spirit forth He sent.

      O thou Mother: fount of love!
      Touch my spirit from above,
      Make my heart with thine accord.

      Make me feel as thou hast felt;
      Make my soul to glow and melt
      With the love of Christ my Lord.

      Holy Mother, pierce me through;
      In my heart each wound renew
      Of my Savior crucified.

      Let me share with thee His pain,
      Who for all my sins was slain,
      Who for me in torment died.

      Let me mingle tears with thee,
      Mourning Him who mourned for me,
      All the days that I may live.

      By the Cross with thee to stay;
      There with thee to weep and pray,
      Is all I ask of thee to give.

      Virgin of all virgins best,
      Listen to my fond request:
      Let me share thy grief divine.

      Let me to my latest breath,
      In my body bear the death
      Of that dying Son of thine.

      Wounded with His every wound,
      Steep my soul till it hath swooned
      In His very blood away.

      Be to me, O Virgin, nigh,
      Lest in flames I burn and die,
      In His awful Judgment day.

      Christ, when Thou shalt call me hence,
      Be Thy Mother my defense,
      Be Thy Cross my victory.

      While my body here decays,
      May my soul Thy goodness praise,
      Safe in Paradise with Thee. Amen.

  22. Joyce's Gravatar Joyce
    March 9, 2021 - 9:05 am | Permalink

    I love the image on Jacopone with a saddle on his back. A holy fool! He gets my vote.

    • Jackie Blake's Gravatar Jackie Blake
      March 9, 2021 - 10:39 pm | Permalink

      Am I the only one who caught “shaken AND stirred” in Jacopone’s bio? He gets my vote as well, although it sounds like Ives will move on.

  23. Gaen M.'s Gravatar Gaen M.
    March 9, 2021 - 9:08 am | Permalink

    Forgot this bit on Jacopone, apologies. As for the saddle wearing and “craziness” — Francis called on his followers to be Jugglers of God (the word jongleur being variously interpreted in the many biographies). And Francis himself did some crazy-sounding things — but used them to speak honestly and get people to reckon with how they were truly living.

  24. Lee Greenawalt's Gravatar Lee Greenawalt
    March 9, 2021 - 9:20 am | Permalink

    I also was first going for Crazy James, but upon reflection realized Ives is a steadfast faithful saint who deserves honor and is an inspiration. Instead of causing conflict, he aided both the high and the lowly.

  25. Emily Correll's Gravatar Emily Correll
    March 9, 2021 - 9:21 am | Permalink

    Had to go for Ives. It seems to me that Jacopone’s wife is the one who should be considered the saint.

  26. Chris Rhoads's Gravatar Chris Rhoads
    March 9, 2021 - 9:27 am | Permalink

    Cheering for Jacapone da Todi. Mystics…., they color my world. Take a listen to Sabat Mater: https://youtu.be/P65oBJBdSXM.

  27. Davis Dassori's Gravatar Davis Dassori
    March 9, 2021 - 9:36 am | Permalink

    I like the poetry, but Ives is an example for our times. In honor of the child benefit included in the COVID relief bill due to be enacted today, I voted for him.

    A little housekeeping: Ives’s adversary was named “Jacopo”and nicknamed “Jacopone” which I believe, though with less certainty, means “Big Jim.” “-one” is a common Italian augmentative suffix. My favorite example is that first there was the viol (viola), then the little viol (violino), then the big viol or double bass (violone), and finally the little big viol (violoncello), which in English is usually shortened to “’cello.” It would be like referring to a piglet as a “’let,”. Italian has many such suffixes, with all kinds of meanings.

    Thank you, dear readers, for allowing my alter ego, Word Nerd, to get this off his chest.

    • St. Celia's Gravatar St. Celia
      March 9, 2021 - 11:11 am | Permalink

      Grazie, Davisone, Davisino, Davisonesto.

    • Susan Lee Hauser's Gravatar Susan Lee Hauser
      March 9, 2021 - 11:34 am | Permalink

      Thank you, dear Word Nerd!

    • Susan Lee Hauser's Gravatar Susan Lee Hauser
      March 9, 2021 - 11:37 am | Permalink

      As a fellow Word Nerd, I feel compelled to point out that “Ives” rhymes with “sleeve” and not “wives.” That opens up a whole new opportunity for limericks, no?

      • St. Celia's Gravatar St. Celia
        March 9, 2021 - 11:38 am | Permalink

        Indeed! 😉

      • Tessa's Gravatar Tessa
        March 9, 2021 - 12:22 pm | Permalink

        As I was going to St. Yves
        I met a man with seven sleeves…

        Nope, not the same. Even if he had seven cats up each sleeve.

        • St. Celia's Gravatar St. Celia
          March 9, 2021 - 12:43 pm | Permalink

          As I was going to St. Ives,
          I met a man who knew how to weave;
          he wove warm sleeves for the poor
          causing Cornish cats to be dour;
          plush fibres out of claws’ reach, they could only grieve.

        • Susan Lee Hauser's Gravatar Susan Lee Hauser
          March 9, 2021 - 1:19 pm | Permalink

          I like the Cornish cats up the woven sleeves!

    • Gaen M.'s Gravatar Gaen M.
      March 9, 2021 - 2:01 pm | Permalink

      I had had the same question about the “one” suffix so I asked my husband, who is fluent in multiple Romance languages, including Italian, who tells me that while the “one” more literally means big (sort of similar to Spanish I think) it also can be used for “awkward” “ugly” “crazy” etc. . . .

      • St. Celia's Gravatar St. Celia
        March 9, 2021 - 2:45 pm | Permalink

        Uh oh. *quickly recalls the whole “Davisone” thing*

      • Davis Dassori's Gravatar Davis Dassori
        March 9, 2021 - 8:53 pm | Permalink

        Glad to defer to superior knowledge.

  28. Mariclaire Buckley's Gravatar Mariclaire Buckley
    March 9, 2021 - 9:38 am | Permalink

    I’m loving the recognition of the saintliness of which the mentally ill are capable.

  29. March 9, 2021 - 9:45 am | Permalink

    Evona’s tomb: St. Evona un Briton, Advocat non Larron, Haeleluiah – “St. Evona, a Breton, lawyer who isn’t a crook, hallelujah!”

  30. Becky Smith's Gravatar Becky Smith
    March 9, 2021 - 9:45 am | Permalink

    Bryan Stevenson is a “Holy man”. I hope he makes it to the Lent Madness bracket some day.

  31. Margaret's Gravatar Margaret
    March 9, 2021 - 10:48 am | Permalink

    Seems like Crazy Jim’s wife was as deserving of sainthood…

  32. Jennifer Deegan's Gravatar Jennifer Deegan
    March 9, 2021 - 10:54 am | Permalink

    I felt most drawn to the example set by Ives, but the poetry of “Stabat Mater” has always resonated very deeply with me. Jacapone it is!

  33. St. Celia's Gravatar St. Celia
    March 9, 2021 - 11:07 am | Permalink

    I was tempted to vote for Jacapone, for his poetry. Also for his repentance, however bizarrely expressed. But I am so drawn to the idea of an attorney who worked doggedly to defend the poor that I voted for Ives on behalf of the US judicial system, that it may reform the courts to advance judges whose minds are not darkened by the Federalist Society or by ALEC, who believe in the constitution as a living document that nurtures democracy, equity, and justice. I cannot believe Ives would approve of Guantanamo, of police chokeholds, of deportations by ICE, or of hypocritical “law and order” political candidates more concerned with looking “tough on [colored] crime” than with writing legislation that would achieve indigenous reparations, education, universal healthcare, a fair tax system, rights for migrants, protection of the planet, and regulation of predatory capitalism. The law is an honorable and necessary profession if practiced with dedication, compassion, and empathy for the dispossessed, despised, and falsely accused.

    • Bobbie's Gravatar Bobbie
      March 9, 2021 - 4:28 pm | Permalink

      Well said. As an attorney who represented the indigent and foster children I could not agree more. So much more to do for true equality. I had to vote for Ives.

    • Carrie's Gravatar Carrie
      March 9, 2021 - 4:37 pm | Permalink

      Well said.

    • Davis Dassori's Gravatar Davis Dassori
      March 9, 2021 - 8:54 pm | Permalink

      One does one’s best.

  34. Duchess's Gravatar Duchess
    March 9, 2021 - 11:34 am | Permalink

    As a sister of a Public Defender, who else could I vote for but St. Ives?

  35. Susan Lee Hauser's Gravatar Susan Lee Hauser
    March 9, 2021 - 11:43 am | Permalink

    I love reading about Ives’ life and all his work in the name of Justice, but I am so awed by “Stabat Mater” and dying after the Gloria at Christmas Eve mass. What a way to go! Voting for “Big Jim.”

    • St. Celia's Gravatar St. Celia
      March 9, 2021 - 11:47 am | Permalink

      Dying after the Christmas eve service and a sumptuous, scrumptious reveillon would be lovely, but I would definitely wait until morning to see what Santa had brought!

      • Susan Lee Hauser's Gravatar Susan Lee Hauser
        March 9, 2021 - 12:07 pm | Permalink

        Good point! But the ecstasy–!

  36. JoJo's Gravatar JoJo
    March 9, 2021 - 11:53 am | Permalink

    Jacapones’ wife did penance for him? She was crazy then he overdid it just a little it.
    St. Ives of the many names gets my vote today for his Lon lasting influences & advocacy for the poor.

  37. Sharron's Gravatar Sharron
    March 9, 2021 - 11:55 am | Permalink

    I can never resist noting the birth and death dates of the saints we’re offered to vote on and wondering if their earthly paths ever crossed. In today’s entries Jaco was 23 and well on his way to amassing a wealthy legal practice and an adoring wife whose faith and untimely nearly and clearly unhinged him. Ivo might have heard of this wonderfully weird fellow lawyer and decided to stick to the straight and narrow justice for all likely moved by the Stabat Mater D0larosa and passing on at the tender age of 50 with Jaco outliving him by 3 years and dying a serene death at 76 in fittingly dramatic fashion. I’m not wasting my vote by giving it to Jaco. I’m applauding the outlandish drama of his being.

  38. Verdery Kassebaum's Gravatar Verdery Kassebaum
    March 9, 2021 - 12:10 pm | Permalink

    Two good lawyers. (Sounds like the beginning of a joke.) Both impressive and inspiring in slightly different ways. Jacapone moved from law to music (a big plus for this choir member) and Ives continued as a lawyer and judge advocating for and defending the poor. I have a son who is a lawyer working in an organization that seeks to improve the lives of people all over the world through various projects. I tell people he’s a lawyer, but one of the good ones and in honor of him I’m voting for Ives.

  39. Tiffany's Gravatar Tiffany
    March 9, 2021 - 12:11 pm | Permalink

    I was not at all familiar with the Stabat Mater Dolarosa, which I now have listened to and read the translation of. I still voted for St. Ives, however. He seems to have been a “good and faithful servant”, using his skills in the law in a manner that conformed to “whatsoever you did to the least of these, you did it to me.”

  40. Bea Fosmire's Gravatar Bea Fosmire
    March 9, 2021 - 12:12 pm | Permalink

    As a widow and mother of an attorney, I have to go with Ives.

  41. Verdery Kassebaum's Gravatar Verdery Kassebaum
    March 9, 2021 - 12:14 pm | Permalink

    Well, I would have voted for Ives, but the “vote” button isn’t there.

    • Tessa's Gravatar Tessa
      March 9, 2021 - 12:23 pm | Permalink

      Refresh or try a different browser. Chrome seems to work well with Lent Madness.

  42. Peggy Nelson's Gravatar Peggy Nelson
    March 9, 2021 - 12:27 pm | Permalink

    My Dad was a lawyer and a municipal judge in a village in western New York. St. Ives reminded
    me of the type of work my Dad did….doing for others was his first concern, using his knowledge
    to help those who did not have his education in the law. He was so fair minded that he was
    elected municipal judge by the community for over 40 years. The poor, the underserved, whoever
    had a need my Dad was there. He also took me to the municipal jail when I was 14 and gave me
    a “tour”…I got the message..sort of!

  43. March 9, 2021 - 12:43 pm | Permalink

    I vote for ives

  44. Fiona's Gravatar Fiona
    March 9, 2021 - 1:33 pm | Permalink

    Tempting as it was to cast my vote for the poet, it goes instead to Saint Ives, in thanksgiving for all those who fearlessly and faithfully pursue justice for the poor, oppressed and marginalised.

  45. Sherrill's Gravatar Sherrill
    March 9, 2021 - 1:58 pm | Permalink

    Voted for Saint Ives, but can’t believe a lawyer could qualify as a Saint.

    • Susan Lee Hauser's Gravatar Susan Lee Hauser
      March 9, 2021 - 3:19 pm | Permalink

      My husband is a lawyer, and he works in his spare time to get immigrant detainees their freedom. And he’s donated untold hours to providing legal work for our local theatre group. Justice AND the arts!

    • Davis Dassori's Gravatar Davis Dassori
      March 9, 2021 - 8:58 pm | Permalink

      What sort of monsters do you think we lawyers are?

  46. Linda Burnett's Gravatar Linda Burnett
    March 9, 2021 - 2:33 pm | Permalink

    I’m voting for Jacapone because I’m a sucker for a good conversion story. Yeah, he might have been a little crazy, but all the really good poets and song writers are. Also appreciate his willingness to take on the status quo and demand reformation. All the best reformers seem a bit crazy with passion as well!

  47. Elaine Chilcote's Gravatar Elaine Chilcote
    March 9, 2021 - 2:36 pm | Permalink

    I have a daughter and son who are lawyers, might not be saint material but are honest people who work for justice! Although I love Stabat Mater Dolorosa, I voted for Ives, who devoted his energies and skills to work for the poor and marginalized. He is a role model for anyone today. Jacapone was too much of an attention seeker for me. Even in medieval times it must have been rude, as it today, to upstage the bride at a wedding. Showing up tarred and feathered would certainly do it!

  48. MARY ROSA's Gravatar MARY ROSA
    March 9, 2021 - 2:40 pm | Permalink


  49. Nola Crewe's Gravatar Nola Crewe
    March 9, 2021 - 2:44 pm | Permalink

    As priest and lawyer I have to give my vote to Ives who inspires a justice system for ALL.

  50. Aimiliona's Gravatar Aimiliona
    March 9, 2021 - 2:52 pm | Permalink

    French folklore:

    Saint Yves était Breton,
    Avocat et non larron.

    Saint Yves was a Breton,
    A lawyer and not a thief.

  51. Karen B Mills's Gravatar Karen B Mills
    March 9, 2021 - 2:57 pm | Permalink

    As a newly retired paralegal who delivers Meals on Wheels and participates in other outreach projects through my parish and community, my vote had to go to Ives. Those who advocate for the poor, orphans and those outside the system, are to be celebrated! Yay for Ives.

  52. Rene Jamieson's Gravatar Rene Jamieson
    March 9, 2021 - 3:21 pm | Permalink

    My best friend is a lawyer, and she, like me, would give a thumbs up for Ives. Ives stood for those who had no standing.

  53. Kim Gray's Gravatar Kim Gray
    March 9, 2021 - 5:07 pm | Permalink

    The Gray Household was torn between Kermit and the Toad. I like the redemption story of Jacapone – may I be more undignified for Christ every day!

  54. Story's Gravatar Story
    March 9, 2021 - 5:13 pm | Permalink

    Oh, my gosh, I am not in step with the voting this year at all. I think maybe one person I have voted for has made it on so far. Jacapone da Todi wrote the Stabat Mater! Hello! The Stabat Mater! Need I say more? I guess so. He also spoke up against corruption, he was a poet and clearly a performance artist as well, and oh, did I mention he wrote the Stabat Mater??? That, too, is a lasting legacy.

    • St Celia's Gravatar St Celia
      March 9, 2021 - 6:08 pm | Permalink

      Stay standing for the mother, sister!

  55. Kim's Gravatar Kim
    March 9, 2021 - 5:30 pm | Permalink

    I’m going to vote for Jacopone – it’s the music thing – but I’m guessing Ives will come out the winner of this one.

  56. Isabel Spencer's Gravatar Isabel Spencer
    March 9, 2021 - 5:49 pm | Permalink

    The way Jacopone reacted to the death of his wife touched me deeply. We underestimate the psychic damage done by life’s tragedies. I’m not a big fan of the Stabat Mater theology but the reality is that the words have inspired some of our best choral music.

  57. Barbara Gay's Gravatar Barbara Gay
    March 9, 2021 - 9:08 pm | Permalink

    As a retired lawyer passionate about social justice, had to go with Ives. But appreciate having a new nickname to tease my brother Jim with – Jacopone!

  58. TJMannion's Gravatar TJMannion
    March 9, 2021 - 9:39 pm | Permalink

    Ass much as I have always loved the Stabat Mater, my love of Justice for the poor is stronger.

  59. March 9, 2021 - 10:28 pm | Permalink

    I was ready to write off Jacopone altogether, but I’ve sung the Stabat Mater at Passion Plays and while processing between Stations of the Cross.

  60. tully monster's Gravatar tully monster
    March 9, 2021 - 10:33 pm | Permalink

    All the drama of some of the lives of other contenders has kind of exhausted me. Ives of Kermartin’s story was calming and refreshing, It’s the Iveses of the world who get justice done.

  61. Cricket's Gravatar Cricket
    March 9, 2021 - 10:50 pm | Permalink

    Jacapone, for the Halo!!!!!

  62. Isabellr's Gravatar Isabellr
    March 9, 2021 - 11:01 pm | Permalink

    Impressive though Jac was, and I am certainly glad to learn more about his beautiful odes to Mary as mother of the Christ, my gut goes with Yves/Ives. My brother’s true name is Yves, October 17 th my late father’s birthday, and being raised in a French family with a love of justice and civil rights…it was Ives for me tonight!

  63. Ruth Anne Hill's Gravatar Ruth Anne Hill
    March 9, 2021 - 11:40 pm | Permalink

    Jacapone had my heart when he gave away all his wealth and dedicated his life to good deeds. In an age of the rich getting richer and the poor getting poorer, perhaps Jacapone’s generosity and obedience to God will motivate us to rethink our habit of ‘laying up treasure’ here on earth rather than using our treasure to help care for all God’s children.

  64. Kitty's Gravatar Kitty
    March 9, 2021 - 11:54 pm | Permalink

    I almost voted for “crazy Jim” because he was such
    a character and gave up his wealth when he discovered how is wife had done penance for him but had to vote for St Ives. He devoted his whole life for social justice for all people no matter their station in life.

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