Saint Simon the Zealot (unknown-107)
In Luke 5:15, Saint Simon is listed with the other Apostles as “Simon who was called a Zealot”. This has been a source of debate with Bible scholars for centuries. There is absolutely no evidence that he belonged to the radical Jewish group known as the Zealots. Rather, it is thought that he received this title because he was ultra-conservative when it came to observing the Old Law.
It is not known when Saint Simon was born. It is thought that he was a Galilean and it has been suggested that he was a cousin of Jesus. This is because of Mark 6:3 which says: “Is he [Jesus] not the carpenter, the son of Mary, and the brother of James and Joses and Judas [Jude] and Simon?”. This passage also suggests that Saint Jude was related to Saint Simon.
After the Ascension of Jesus, it is thought that Simon traveled to Egypt and that he and Jude later evangelized Mesopotamia and Persia together. Although there is a dispute about where Saint Simon was martyred, it is thought to have been in Persia. There is also a dispute about whether he was crucified or sawn in half. Either way, he is considered the patron saint of sawyers.
Saint Jude the Apostle (unknown)
Devotion to Saint Jude the Apostle did not exist for many years because faulty translations of the Scriptures made the early Christians think that he was the same person as Judas Iscariot. Obviously, this problem was later cleared up and Saint Jude is now recognized as the brother of Saint James the Less. He is sometimes referred to as Thaddeus or as Saint Jude Thaddeus.
The dates of his birth and death are unknown. During his travels with Saint Simon, it is thought that he became a renowned exorcist. Saint Jude was martyred in Persia by being beaten with a club.
In modern times, this saint has been almost solely associated with lost causes because of St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. Danny Thomas, the organization’s founder, was a Roman Catholic and, before his career took off, had made a promise that, if Saint Jude would show him what to do with his life, he would build a shrine for him. St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital is the fulfillment of this promise.
In the Roman Catholic Church, Saints Simon and Jude are almost always associated with each other. Their feast day is October 28.
Sources: Butler’s Lives of the Saints
New American Translation of the Holy Bible