Religion: Patron Saint of Lost Objects


Lost objects? Is it Saint Thecla or Saint Longino who helps us find them?  Francisco Ramirez from the Philippines says: No, no, that's St. Anthony for lost objects. But it helps if you offer a donation by way of showing gratitude. The magnitude of the donation increases depending on the value of the lost object and the length of time one has looked for it without seeking the help of St. Anthony. For truly lost causes do not stop at St. Anthony. Go directly to San Judas.  RH: My knowledge of the helpfulness of various saints is limited, so I refer to the aforementioned url: NM Santos--Saints by Name
... soldiers, Santiago, San Longino. sorrow, NS de Dolores. spelunkers, San Benito.
spinsters, Sta Catherine de Alexandria. stamp collectors, San Gabriel ...
nmsantos.com/cgi-bin/shop.pl/page=santoslist2.htm - 94k - Cached - Similar pages
What saint helps us find lost objects? David Crow has found the lost answer: In Mexico, San Antonio is for finding love and San Judas Tadeo for lost causes. On the northbound side of the toll road between Monterrey and Nuevo Laredo, motorists will find a small roadside chapel devoted to San Judas Tadeo.  I stopped more out of anthropological curiosity than devotion (as a Protestant, I simply don't have the custom of asking saints to
intercede--although, as an ecumenical, I would never disparage the practice). The walls were dark and there must have been several dozen foot-and-a-half statues of the saint and several hundreds of candles.  My wife told my mother-in-law, who is a devout Catholic, that I had visited the chapel.  Apparently, one goes to San Judas Tadeo only in very dire cases, because my mother-in-law responded, "Ay, poor, poor David!"  Curiously, I was between jobs at the time and got work two weeks later.  I'm not sure if it was due to the saint's efficacy or the fact that I had been slightly more diligent in handing out resumes, but my mother-in-law has no doubts about
who is responsible.  

RH: I was puzzled when Francisco Ramirez  said we should appeal to Judas.  He was thinking of  Judas Thaddeus. commonly know in English as Jude: Saint Jude was the brother of Saint James the Less and Saint Simeon. There were several brothers and cousins among the Apostles - after all, if you had found the Messiah, who would you tell first, your own family or a stranger on the street?  I suppose finding the Messiah fitted him for his new job of helping people fond lost objects.

For WAISers who fear their cause is lost or who have indeed lost something, Cuban exile Alberto Gutierrez sends from Miami some helpful information:- Indeed San Judas is the patron saint for truly lost cases. His church is the most popular in Miami after the Shrine of Our Lady of Copper , Cuba's  patron saint. Other saint very popular is St Lazarus, the leper of the parable. His church is visited not only by "true" Catholics but also by many who practice African cults. Syncretism is widely accepted among Cubans. When years ago John Paul II visited Cuba a tour of the Shrine of St Lazarus and the "lazareto", the infirmary for lepers, near Havana,  was part of his agenda.
 
For lost articles we sometimes invoke San Aparicio, but I wonder about the authenticity of this saint. In Madrid St Anthony has a small but beautiful church. The  main section of the ceiling is a vault where Francisco de Goya painted allegories related to the saint. In the past, some Spanish and Cuban maidens in search of a husband prayed to St Anthony. But probably the popularity of the saint has not increased in these times of liaisons and other temporary activities.

RH: Apparently in Spanish it is not necessary to say San Judas Tadeo. The "San" is sufficient to avoid any confusion with Judas Iscariot, which means a man from Kerioth, a town in Palestine.  I believe that in English we call San Judas Saint Jude.  I hope the fact that Cuban exiles in Miami frequent the Church of San Judas does not mean that they think their cause is lost.  Anyhow, he will help. San Aparicio must owe his reputation to "aparecer", to appear.  Are there lepers still in Cuba? Saint Anthony is the patron saint of babies.  Is that what the maidens really wanted?
 


Ronald Hilton 2005

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last updated: June 11, 2005