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  • Writer's picturePhil


I'm Phil Collins, but not THAT one.

Even now, people snigger when I introduce myself.

At one time in Winchester Paul Newman, Michael Jackson

and Phil Collins were clergy in the same Deanery!

Simon-not-Peter; Jude not Iscariot.

It's a bit much being remembered for who you are not!

We know very little about either of them.

The Bible tells us that they were disciples,

but compared to the more-prominent among the twelve

they aren’t remembered beyond their names.

But at least Simon and Jude are remembered.

Simon was known as “Simon the Zealot”,

which seems to point to him being a Jewish freedom fighter,

who wanted to see the back of the Romans.

Jude is described as “Judas, not Iscariot” to avoid any confusion

with the disciple who betrayed Jesus.

Luke names him as Judas son of James,

Matthew and Mark name him Thaddaeus, rather than Jude.

If Jude wrote the Epistle of Jude

then he tells us he is the brother of James.

If he wrote the epistle of Jude,

then he passionately yearned for the day of the Lord

to right all wrongs and his religious zeal was strong,

making the zealot Simon a kindred spirit.

After Jesus’s death and resurrection,

what did these zealous, perhaps hothead,

disciples Simon and Jude do with their passion?

They are associated with missionary work in several countries

in the Middle East and Africa, from Libya to Armenia.

Even on Roman roads, travel was not easy in those days,

and they did not have the protection of Roman citizenship

which made life marginally easier for Paul.

Tradition tells us that they both ended up in Persia

where because of their zeal they were martyred around AD 65.

Both seem to be ordinary-but-passionate people.

Most of us are ordinary people

who want to be faithful to God day by day,

and we have things about which we are passionate.

In the midst of ordinary life,

what is God calling you to do with your passions?

Simon is the patron saint of tanners;

Jude – lost causes…. why?

because his name as an intercessor could be muddled with

“Jude who WAS Judas”!

The saint who had most time to intercede for us.

I found this, but don't know who wrote it.......

"During my time as an Anaesthetic Sister in the Operating Theatres

of Royal Hampshire County Hospital St Jude played a very large part.

I worked for an Irish Catholic Theatre Superintendent who used to gather us all together before the day’s work began to pray to St Jude. She used to ask St Jude to help us all get through the day because we were all “Hopeless Cases!” The days were long, chaotic & very demanding as you can imagine, but we got through them saving many lives & hopefully prolonging many others. Whether this was due to the intervention of St Jude or not I will leave you to ponder!

The Superintendent thought us “Hopeless”, as we never came up to her exacting standards of perfection. God on the other hand never thinks of us as hopeless even when we fall far short of serving Him. He is always there to help & support, guide & nurse, encourage & reward us. He sent his Son Jesus to show us the way, and the Holy Spirit to guide us. St Jude knew this for himself as he went about his daily life as an Apostle of Jesus.

I like to think of St Jude not as the Patron Saint of “Lost Causes” & “Hopeless Cases”, but of someone just like us trying to pass on the wonderful message God has given us through Jesus, - that of Hope & Love. He was just an ordinary man doing extraordinary things through the power of God. Perhaps the Superintendent was right after all, St Jude was watching over our patients and us."

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