As one of the twelve apostles, St. Jude is a part of the foundation of the Church of Jesus Christ. (Rev 21:14) Wherever he traveled, he established communities of faith in which "the faithful lived together and owned everything in common... sharing among themselves according to what each one needed. Day after day they went as a body to the temple but met in their houses for the breaking of bread; they shared their food gladly and generously." (Acts 2:44-46)
St. Jude believed in unity and equality within the Church. Like St. Paul, he understood that "all of us are part of Christ's body." (I Cor 12: 27) Because we are all equal in Christ, St. Jude professed with St. Paul, "There is no difference between Jews and Gentiles, between slaves and free, between men and women; we are all one in Christ Jesus." (Gal 3:28)
Jesus promised the apostles that he would send his Spirit, the advocate, "to lead them to complete truth." (Jn 16:13) On Pentecost, they received that Spirit "like a powerful wind from heaven," and began to make bold proclamations as the Spirit prompted them. (Acts 2:2,4) They overcame their fear and preached with wisdom and strength.
The Lord calls us to be active members of our parish communities, sharing our gifts and placing them at the service of others. We need to overcome our fears, timidity and selfish individualism in order to join with others to share our faith, unite in prayer, and work together to build up Christ's body, which is the church. Jesus longed that we all be one as he and the Father are one. May we work for that unity and equality among all believers in Jesus Christ.
St. Jude, you traveled far and wide to bring the Good News of Jesus Christ to all nations. You gathered people into communities of faith so that they might live the Gospel of the Lord, sharing their lives and resources, joining their hearts and minds in the Lord. You recognized the dignity of all, the diversity of gifts, and the equality among all God's children. Pray to the Lord to send his Spirit to our church leaders and to each of us so that we might create unity and equality amid the division and discrimination in our church communities. Help us overcome our own fear, our timidity or self-centeredness in order to place our gifts at the service of our sisters and brothers in our local church communities. Amen.
I will do something to help build up my local church.
~Recite the St. Jude Thaddeus Prayer~