A Message from Fr. Bede
January 1998Dear Friends of St. Jude,
A New Year brings new beginnings and new hope. Although we must weather the winter elements, we look forward to a fresh year, with its promise of another spring, to enliven our spirits and urge us onward once again on our wild and wonderful journey to God.
There is an air of adventure at this time of year. We do not know what the ensuing months will bring, yet we know they will be God-filled and will lead us to a closer relationship to the God who loves us tenderly. We have just celebrated that unreserved love of God for us in sending His Son into our lives. Just as God gave life to Jesus, He gives the fullness of life to each of us in Jesus. And not only in Jesus and the Church, but also in family, friends, acquaintances, nature, even in the ordinary events of life, we discover God's love for us. For all of this we give our deepest thanks.
We also give thanks for St. Jude who, in God's plan, is our advocate before the throne of God. And as we prepare for the Solemn Novena, January 21-29, we give thanks for you who are such devoted friends of St. Jude, of the shrine, which honors him, and of all us who work here. May God bless you well in this New Year!
In Jesus' name,
Fr. Bede Jagoe, O.P.
P.S. All of us at the Shrine of St. Jude
Wish you God's blessing, joy, and peace
For the New Year!
Jose M. Santiago, O.P., is a Dominican friar of the central Dominican Province of St. Albert the Great. Fr. Jose has spent his 10 years of Dominican life ministering: in jail/ juvenile detention centers, with Latin American immigrants in St. Louis and Denver, and in adult education. He is on the Province Provincial Council and the Peace and Justice Commission. He presently is Pastor at St. Dominic in Denver, Colorado, a multicultural parish.
Social Justice; Who Decides
How many times have you and I been greeted with the question: "How are you?" The answer depends to a large degree on our attitude.
The word "attitude" originally referred to the disposition of a figure in statuary or painting. When we look at an individual in a painting, for example, we get a sense of how he or she "faces the world." It may be with trust, anticipation, fear, love, or indifference. How a person "faces the world" depends not only on their internal disposition, however, but on their external circumstances. If, for example, a person lives in a situation where they have no decision making power over their lives, they will probably not face the new day with a lot of enthusiasm. This is where Social Justice comes in. When Social Justice is present people can make decisions that effect their lives and the lives of their loved ones. Social Justice is all about "who decides."
Here we see the difference between Social Justice and Charity. Charity does not ask, "who decides." It sees suffering and responds to the immediate pain. But Social Justice asks: "Why is there this condition that causes suffering in the first place and what can we do about it?" A wonderful story illustrates the difference between Charity and Social Justice. Some people were just beginning a picnic along the side of a river when they heard, "Help, help." A little boy was floating down the river! They all jumped into the water, brought the child to shore, and were drying him off when they spotted a second child coming down the river. What was their natural impulse? They all dived in and rescued him. Then a third child came down and a fourth.
When the fifth child came down the river everyone jumped in for the rescue except one person. He said, "I'm going up the shore to find out whose throwing them in!" That's Social Justice. Going to the source of the problem.
For the follower of Jesus, both, Charity and Social Justice are important because they are both ways of improving the lives of God's people. They are both ways of caring.
In Christ's love,
Fr. Richard de Ranitz, O.P.
Father de Ranitz is a member of the Shrine of St. Jude Staff. He also gives retreats and workshops on physical, mental and spiritual health.
January NovenaTHE PRESENCE OF GOD AMONG US
"I love to have the grandchildren come to visit, but I am also happy to see them go home." These words I heard from a grandmother reminded me that as we grow older and mature in wisdom and knowledge, we discover more acutely the need for quiet times in our lives. It is part of the slowing down process that rails against the busyness of our lives and makes us relish the quiet times.
Silence and solitude are kinds of rest-filled emptiness that is only filled by the presence of God. Silence and solitude lay bare with one's soul and expose it simply and humbly to the great experience of God.
The presence of God can take place in Church, at the time of celebrating the Eucharist, at a shrine, before the fireplace, or a prayer area in some corner of your house. Perhaps, you may experience the presence of God in the events of nature, and more commonly in the eyes and mannerism of a loved one.
We welcome all to the January Novena, (January 21-29) either at the Shrine of St. Jude or in the privacy of your home. May you be richly blessed during these nine days of Solemn Novena.
FRIENDS OF ST. JUDE REPORT
- My grateful thanks to St. Jude, the Sacred Heart of Jesus and the Immaculate Heart of Mary for encouraging news about my eye problems.
- I have been praying to St. Jude for help with a problem at work and St. Jude answered my prayer. Thank you St. Jude for your help.
- A.B. Seattle, WA
- I made a Novena to St. Jude after being let go at work but thanks to St. Jude, all the Angels and Saints, prayers and intercessions, I am back again and everything is going according to plan. St. Jude has always been good to me and in other desperate cases. Thank you St. Jude.
- E.S. Louisville, KY
- I asked for my daughter-in-law to be given the gift of faith, hope and conversion and reconciliation. This prayer was answered on March 29th at the Easter Vigil when she was baptized and confirmed and made her first communion. An extra bonus was given to me when my son went to confession and re-joined her in the Catholic Church along with my 8 yr. old grandchild.
Many people write asking us to publish their thanks. So, please tell us your story of how St. Jude has helped you. We cannot publish all those letters that just say "thank you" without giving details. (Also, we do not publish anonymous stories.) It's your story that gives others hope!
ST. JUDE LEGACY CLUBThe St. Jude Legacy Club is our special way of recognizing those people who have remembered us in their will. On the 28th of each month, all the members are remembered in a Mass celebrated at the tomb of St. Jude in the Vatican.
If you have remembered us in your will and we have not listed you as a member of the St. Jude Legacy Club, please let us know. If you have not yet remembered us in your will but would like to do so, please contact us for details. Our legal title is:Dominican Fathers
Shrine of St. Jude Thaddeus
1909 S. Ashland Ave.
Chicago, Illinois 60608-2994
Rosary, Novena Prayers, Mass
Come if you can
- or join in the prayers in your home!
(No services on Sunday)