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Faith Reflections

Hope Above All


"And everyone who hopes in Him purifies himself as He is pure." — 1 John 3:3

St. Jude is known and loved for his specialty of staying by our side in our “desperate and hopeless causes,” a reference that is reconsidered today as a devotion of hope. Our devotion emphasizes the hope St. Jude holds out to anyone who needs it. This expanded understanding of his intercession emphasizes that he is a powerful patron for us every day, in all that we do, and whenever we need his hope and help—not just in our most difficult times. In return, we express ongoing gratitude and share the richness of a devotion to St. Jude with others.

The hope we place in God and in St. Jude’s intercession is ideally always confident in the knowledge and expectation that God stands with us, a source of strength and peace.

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Hope Above All

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Yet enjoying the peace that comes from this hope doesn’t mean we aren’t vulnerable to the stresses of our life challenges. It’s how we navigate them that matters most to our spiritual health and our faithfulness to God: not with despair, but with deep and abiding faith. God is very realistic, and knows we may need time and practice to move from fear or despair to the peace of our faith and His love. But as we mature in our faith and endure a life of challenges successfully met, our time in despair becomes brief and our move to faith becomes ever more confident. Even when we become exhausted from a particular circumstance, we know in the quiet of our hearts we have something more—faith and hope—that grounds us to move forward.

Prayer is the language of that “something more,” a steady stream in thoughts and words that gives shape to our relationship with God. And it is God’s love for us that breathes meaning into any of our prayers. The trust we have in St. Jude’s hope and intercession, and in God’s unconditional love for us, reinforces our ability to work through difficulties well. We are not alone in any challenge.