The tour marks the first time the extraordinary relic of St. Jude Thaddeus has left Italy.
“Regarded as the patron saint of lost causes and desperate situations, the visit provides an opportunity for individuals to experience intimacy with someone who dwells in Heaven and beholds God face-to-face,” stated Fr. Carlos Martins, director of Treasures of the Church, in a press release. “It allows devotees to receive his blessing and entrust him with their petitions.”
>> Watch the LOOPcast interview of Fr. Carlos Martins about exorcisms HERE. <<
Treasures of the Church said the tour “offers a unique opportunity for devotees and the curious alike to experience a connection with one of the most venerated figures in Christian history.”
Jude is identified as “the Lord’s first cousin,” according to Treasures of the Church. He was one of Christ’s Twelve Apostles and is believed to have been martyred in Beirut several decades after Christ’s death and resurrection.
Centuries after Jude’s death, his body was transferred to a tomb in St. Peter’s Basilica. His arm was subsequently placed in a reliquary shaped like a priest’s hand giving a blessing.
Fr. Martins emphasized the healing component of the tour as well as that of spiritual enrichment.
“God never disappoints but always ‘shows up’ at an exposition. There are healings at each one. Thousands have been reported to me. Spectacular ones.”
Pilgrims will also be able to receive a Plenary Indulgence issued by Pope Francis.
“The apostle’s visit is an effort by the Catholic Church to give comfort and hope to all who need it,” Fr. Martins said.
>> An explanation of the Catholic practice of venerating relics can be found HERE. <<