Simon Yempo (1580-1623) worked with Girolamo de Angelis as a team ministering to Christians during the persecution of the Shogun Iyemitsu. Yempo served as a catechist and joined the Jesuits during this clandestine period. Yempo was born in Nozu, Kyushu and entered a Buddhist monastery as a youngster; he became a Christian when the head bonze converted in 1596. He enrolled in a Jesuit seminary two years later. His firsthand knowledge of Buddhism helped him explain Christianity to his countrymen. Initially he went into exile when the missions were outlawed, but he returned and offered his help to De Angelis. For more details of his story, see the entry on De Angelis.
Martyres in Japan
Originally Collected and edited by: Tom Rochford, SJ