Today we celebrate two of the Apostles, both of whom shared their same name as other more famous Apostles.
The first, Simon, is called the Zealot, so that he might not be confused with Simon, whom Jesus renamed Peter. Very little is known about this apostle. All that remains are a handful of legends.
The second, is called in English Jude. In fact he has the same name as Judas, and English is one of the only languages that uses a different translation for each person's name. In the New Testament both are named Ιούδας.
We know the two travelled together and were martyred together in 65 AD. The axe that is often pictured with St. Jude is a reference to how they were martyred. Today the relics of both are entombed together in St. Peter's Basilica.
For soon after his death before his remains were moved to Rome. It is said that those who visited the grave of St. Jude experienced powerful miracles and so he became known as the patron saint of desperate or lost causes.
We pray to Saints not because we "worship" them but because we believe that the command to pray for one another never ends. We do not believe that those who have made it to heaven are indifferent to the struggles of us here on earth. We believe that those many and women who have already made it into the fulness of eternal life still love us, care for us, and can and do pray for us.
If we believe the promises of Jesus then we know that Simon and Jude are not dead. They are in heaven and continue to watch over and intercede for the Church they helped Jesus to established. The love now as God loves.
This Simon reminds us that it's ok not to be the famous one. And Jude reminds us that there is no such thing as a lost cause. With God all things are possible.
Jesus sent them out two by to because we are not meant to go it alone. Do not be embarrassed to ask for help, and especially ask for help from those closest to Jesus.
St. Simon and St Jude, pray for us.