All Saints Academy students recently examined a tangible connection to Christ's ministry 2,000 years ago: a relic of St. Jude Thaddeus. It was an opportunity to reflect prayerfully on God's action through the lives and legacies of the saints.
Rev. Michail Ford, O.P., is the director of the Dominican Shrine of St. Jude Thaddeus in Chicago. On October 10, 2017, he traveled with the arm relic of St. Jude to speak about it at the Parish of St. Jude in Grand Rapids, the site of the ASA middle school. ASA elementary students traveled from their campus at Blessed Sacrament Parish to see the relic, too.
The arm relic of St. Jude Thaddeus is the largest relic of one of the 12 Apostles outside of Rome. It's a piece of bone from the apostle's right wrist (specifically, it's the part of the ulna which forms the knob of the wrist). It's been sealed in a silver reliquary for hundreds of years.
Before displaying the relic and inviting students to venerate it, Father Ford gave a presentation all about prayer, different kinds of devotions, the process of canonizing saints, the importance of relics, and the life and martyrdom of St. Jude. Following the presentation, students venerated the relic, prayerfully looking through the reliquary's glass and observing the bone whose owner walked, talked and ministered with Jesus Christ. Additionally, Father Ford also displayed relics of several other saints, including St. Dominic, St. Thomas Aquinas and St. Maria Goretti. Learn more about relics and Father Ford's visit by reading the ASA Today blog post at this link. See photos in the gallery below or at this link.
A remarkable example of the reality of the communion of saints, this experience showed students that our Church's history is something tangible, that our faith in Christ is something we share with countless people who have gone before us, and that God works through the lives and the legacies of the saints.