St. Anne the Mother of Mary
Question from on 04-19-2007:
I have read recently that St. Anne, the Mother of Mary had an older daughter? Is this true. I have always read that she was barren until she had the Virgin Mary?
Answer by David Gregson on 05-17-2007:
I know of no source for the idea that Mary had an older sister. There was a story, originating in the 16th century, that she had younger half-sisters. According to this story, St. Joachim died shortly after his Daughter's presentation in the temple, and then St. Anne married Cleophas. By him, she had (according to the story) Mary Cleophae, wife of Alphaeus and mother of the Apostles James the Less, Simon and Jude Thaddaeus. Then, after the death of Cleophas (according to the story), she married Salomas and became the mother of Mary Salomae, wife of Zebedee, and mother of the Apostles James and John. This story has no support from ancient sources. The Church has always favored the view that St. Anne was monogamous, based on the early apocryphal work, the Protoevangelium of James.