Died: beaten to death with a club, then beheaded
post-mortem in 1st century Persia; relics at Saint
Peter's, Rome, at Rheims, and at Toulouse, France
Feast Day: October 28
Patron Saint of: desperate causes, desperate
situations, lost causes
Very little is known about our patron saint. We
do know that he was possibly a cousin of Jesus and
certainly one of Jesus’ disciples. We don’t know the
circumstances of his becoming a disciple, but we can
imagine that Jude heard Jesus preaching and was
moved by what he heard – God loves everyone!
For some time Jude followed Jesus as he went about
Galilee preaching. And then one day, Jesus chose
Jude as one of his 12 Apostles. In Luke’s listing of
the 12 (6:16) Jude’s name appears. In Matthew (10:3)
and in Mark (3:18) the name Thaddeus is used. That
is why we call our patron, Saint Jude Thaddeus. Jude
must have been both grateful to have been chosen and
frightened about how he could possibly continue the
work Jesus had begun. But like the other apostles,
Jude quickly learned to rely not on his own
strengths but on God helping him.
Like most of the other disciples of Jesus, Jude fled
when Jesus was arrested in the garden (Mark 14:50)
and like the others did not stand by Jesus during
the crucifixion. There can be no doubt that their
betrayal weighed heavily on each of the disciples –
nor can there be any doubt that they rejoiced when
the Risen Christ forgave them (John 20:19).
We don’t know where St. Jude went to preach the good
news of Jesus nor do we know when or where he died.
He shares his feast, October 28th, with Saint Simon,
presumably because they preached and died together.
The pictures of St. Jude show him with a flame over
his head – a reminder that the Holy Spirit came upon
him in tongues of fire at Pentecost. (Acts 2:3) He
is also represented carrying an image of Jesus – a
reminder that each of us is to bring Christ to