- 22 August
- 25 October as one of the Forty Martyrs of England and Wales
- 29 October as one of the Martyrs of Douai
Son of John and Anne Kemble. Studied at Douai, France. Ordained on 23 February 1625 at Douai College. Returned to England on 4 June 1625 as a missioner in Monmouthshire and Herefordshire. He tended to his covert flock for 53 years.
Arrested at Pembridge Castle, the home of a family member, in 1678, and lodged in Hereford Gaol. Falsely accused of being part of the Titus Oates Plot. Condemned in March 1679 for the treason of Catholic priesthood. Martryed at age 80. One of the Forty Martyrs of England and Wales.
Before leaving for his execution, John sat for a while with the under-sheriff, having a final drink and smoking a final pipe. This led to the Herefordshire expression “Kemble cup” and “Kemble pipe”, meaning one taken before a parting.
- hanged, drawn, and quartered on 22 August 1679 at Widemarsh Common, Hereford, England
- so well respected in the area that he was permitted to die on the gallows and avoid the agony of the drawing and quartering elements
- buried in the Welsh Newton Churchyard
- his hand is preserved as a relic at Saint Francis Xavier’s church, Hereford, England
- “Saint John Kemble“. CatholicSaints.Info. 29 October 2013. Web. 2 April 2015. <>