Veneration of Saint Jude Thaddeus Relic
On Tuesday October 10th, the All Saints Academy students had a very special visitor! Rev. Michail Ford, O.P., the director of the Dominican Shrine of St Jude Thaddeus in Chicago, came to talk the the students and Saint Jude Parish Parishioners about relics. He brought with him the forearm of St Jude the Apostle, encased in a very special reliquary.
This 1st class relic is the largest relic of an apostle outside of Rome. Before allowing students to venerate the relic Fr. Mike talked with them about prayer, Catholic devotions, and saints. He explained the rich Catholic tradition of relics with a collection of small first class relics including: St Maria Goretti, St Thomas Aquinas, St Martin DePorres, St John Vianney, St Dominic and St Raymond Penafort.
Fr. Mike made sure to explain why, as Catholics, we venerate relics and that we don’t worship Saints, or believe that relics are magical. He reminded students that we ask Saints to pray for us, and that relics are not only often associated with miracles, but they are also tangible connections to the history of The Church and the story of our faith! Relics offer us a new insight into the meaning our root belief at ASA that, “We Are One.” In addition to being 1 school with 2 campuses and 4 parishes, The Church is one Body in Christ comprised of the entire Communion of Saints.
During his presentation, ASA students were able to tell Fr. Mike what they already knew about 1st, 2nd and 3rd class relics. A 1st class relic is a part of the body of a Saint. A 2nd class relic is an item that belonged to a Saint. A 3rd class relic is an item that has been touched to a 1st or 2nd class relic. When it was time to venerate the relic students were gifted with a St Jude prayer card that they were able to touch to the St Jude 1st class relic to make it a 3rd class relic.
Following veneration of the St Jude relic, Fr. Mike celebrated a special Mass with ASA K-8 students and a number of St Jude parishioners.
If you are interested in learning more check out the Dominican Shrine of St Jude website to learn about the life of St Jude Thaddeus and the history of this very special relic.
There are also more pictures and a little more information from this very special visit available at the Diocese of Grand Rapids Catholic Schools Blog about the event.
Did you know All Saints Academy has our own small collection of Saint Relics? On display at the middle school we have a relic of both St Paul the Apostle and St Augustine. Stop in sometime to check them out!