St. Jude – The Worker of Miracles
Saint Jude, also known as Thaddeus, was one of the 12 Apostles of Jesus and is the patron saint of desperate and lost causes. It is reported that St. Jude was born into a Jewish family in Paneas which was a town in Galilee that was later rebuilt by the Romans and renamed Caesarea Philippi. In all probability, he spoke both Greek and Aramaic and was a farmer by trade. St. Jude was the son of Clopas and his wife Mary, a sister of the Virgin Mary. Tradition has it that Jude’s father, Clopas, was murdered because of his outspoken devotion to the risen Christ. History tells us that he preached the Gospel in Judea, Samaria, Idumaea, Syria, Mesopotamia, and Lybia.
On his travels, he spread his faith and authored an epistle (letter) to the Churches of the East. Jude is invoked in desperate situations because his New Testament letter stresses that the faithful should persevere in the environment of harsh, difficult circumstances, just as their forefathers had done before them.
The feast of this patron saint of desperate cases is celebrated by the faithful on October 28. Saint Jude is not to be confused with Judas Iscariot, who betrayed Jesus and despaired because of his great sin.
According to the Armenian tradition, Saint Jude suffered martyrdom about 65 AD in Beirut, in the Roman province of Syria, together with the apostle Simon the Zealot. After his death, Saint Jude’s body was brought from Beirut to Rome and placed in a crypt in St. Peter’s Basilica which is visited by many devotees.