May 10 was a day of celebration for the Catholic Church in Ireland as it marked the first time in 2021 that Catholics in the Republic were legally permitted to attend Mass.
Yet, the joy should be tempered with prayerful vigilance, according to Séamus Ó Fianghusa (Fennessy), author of the new book, Heaven Help Us, Now!: A Self Help Guide to God’s Own First Responder, St. Jude Thaddeus.
“We should remain on guard against a government that believes it has the right to shut churches down and persecute reception of the sacraments,” Ó Fianghusa says. He believes that Catholics should turn to St. Jude both in thanks for the return of Mass and in petition to keep it that way.
The book points out, “The Eucharist is supremely relevant to the St. Jude Thaddeus devotion. Recall that in Hebrew, Jude/Judas/Judah means ‘Thanksgiving.’ Do you know what Eucharist means in Greek? You got it right, ‘Thanksgiving.’ Let’s let that sink in.”
St. Jude is highly regarded by many as the patron saint of hopeless causes. Ó Fianghusa states, “Some people consider Ireland to be a hopeless cause but I say she’s not, because St. Jude is our heavenly patron.”
“Ireland needs to be a 32-county republic, she needs her language and culture, and she needs her Catholic faith – the only thing that brings eternal life. Praying to St. Jude will help bring this about, if enough people do so with true faith.”
St. Jude Thaddeus has traditionally been a popular saint in Ireland. He was venerated by the author’s grandfather from Limerick City, to whom “Heaven Help Us, Now!” is dedicated.
Ó Fianghusa himself is a life-long devotee of St. Jude Thaddeus. He is also an American National Guard soldier and combat veteran. He is currently serving on the military’s COVID-19 relief mission.
He is known for the widespread attention and support he garnered for the campaign to rescue his bomb dog, “Bring K9 Mattie Home.” As a historian, soldier, and Irish language activist, Séamus has been featured on Fox News and the Smithsonian Channel in the U.S., and on RTÉ, TG4, and BBC in Ireland.
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