According to legend St. Jude, one of the original twelve apostles, was a relative, most likely a cousin, of Jesus and grew up in the same region as Jesus. His mother was a cousin of the Virgin Mary and his father the brother of St. Joseph. His brother, St. James, was also one of the original twelve apostles. He and his family were farmers by trade. He is known to have written a Gospel letter encouraging recent Christian converts to persevere in the harsh, difficult circumstances they were in and to keep their faith, staying in the love of God. This led to his current designation as patron saint of desperate cases. About 65 A.D., St. Jude was martyred by either axe or club. His body was taken to Rome and placed beneath St. Peter’s Basilica where pilgrims still visit his crypt.
If, like myself, you find yourself in a situation you find impossible to resolve and feel hopeless, I suggest a Novena to this beloved saint and apostle. A novena is a prayer said for nine consecutive days invoking the help of a particular saint (or Mary or Jesus), with the promise to publish one’s request to encourage others to seek the intercessor’s aid. Traditionally, while one is completing a novena, fasting and meditating would also be done. Many Novenas have particular prayers that are used, but several, such as St. Jude, vary by the reciter. There are dozens of prayers to choose from, or create your own. St. Jude is frequently turned to by those experiencing or close to someone experiencing illness or other medical problems, financial or employment difficulty, relationship problems, depression, and addiction.
Your prayer to St. Jude invoking his help should be followed by three Our Fathers, three Hail Marys, and three Glorias (also known as the Glory Be). After you’ve said your novena, don’t be surprised if you receive an answer or help different than what you were expecting or hoping for. But don’t despair, help will come… just be open to God’s will.
Here is my Novena to St. Jude
Blessed Apostle St. Jude, I call upon you for help in hope and utmost confidence. St. Jude, renowned help of the hopeless, come to my aid in this time of distress. St. Jude, cousin of Our Lord, obtain from our Savior the favors I now need and seek, especially (peace within my family and a resolution to the problems and difficulties that put a strain on my daughter). You know that which troubles me most and the resolution for which I seek your intercession. Hear my prayer, in the name of Our Lord, Jesus Christ. Amen.