Memorial: October 28 (Roman Church); June 19 (Eastern Church).
St. Jude, known as Thaddaeus, was a brother of St. James the Less, and a relative of Jesus. Ancient writers tell us that he preached the Gospel in Judea, Samaria, Idumaea, Syria, Mesopotamia, and Lybia. According to Eusebius, he returned to Jerusalem in the year 62, and assisted at the election of his brother, St. Simeon, as Bishop of Jerusalem.
He is an author of an epistle (letter) to the Churches of the East, particularly the Jewish converts, directed against the heresies of the Simonians, Nicolaites, and Gnostics. This Apostle is said to have suffered martyrdom in Armenia, which was then subject to Persia. The final conversion of the Armenian nation to Christianity did not take place until the third century A.D.
St. Jude was the one who asked Jesus at the Last Supper why He would not manifest Himself to the whole world after His resurrection. Little else is known of his life. Legend claims that he visited Beirut and Edessa.
St. 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. Therefore, he is the patron saint of desperate cases.
St Jude Thaddeus was beaten to death with a club, then beheaded post-mortem in 1st century Persia. His relics reside at Saint Peter's in Rome, at Rheims, and at Toulouse, France.
He is the patron of desperate situations, forgotten causes, hospital workers, hospitals, impossible causes, lost causes, and the diocese of Saint Petersburg, Florida. He is represented as bearded man holding an oar, a boat, boat hook, a club, an axe or a book. Nearly every image of him depicts him wearing a medallion with a profile of Jesus. He usually has a small flame above his head and he often carries a pen.
Saint Jude Thaddeus is not the same person as Judas Iscariot who betrayed Our Lord and despaired because of his great sin and lack of trust in God's mercy.
One of my favorite Saints is St. Jude! He's supposed to be the Saint of desperate and "hopeless" cases, which I have plenty of. Desperate because we are broke, and hopeless because of my wife's end stage kidney failure! Only a miracle can heal her and only money buys a new kidney! St. Jude, pray for us!