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Patron Saint of Lost Causes

AKA: Impossible Causes or Hopeless Causes


Are you or do you know someone who is facing what appears to be an endless uphill battle? Despite many attempts, it feels like there is no chance of success. It feels like things are hopeless. But fear not, because with God, nothing is impossible or a lost cause. God has provided us with Saints who can intercede and advocate for us called Patron Saints.

Feeling Lost or Hopeless

Who is the Patron Saint of Lost Causes

St. Jude is the most well-known Patron Saint of Lost Causes but many don’t know that St. Rita of Cascia is also the Patron Saint of Impossible Causes.

St. Jude, often known as St. Jude Thaddeus, was one of the twelve apostles and a relative of Jesus. He initially became the go-to saint for desperate situations because of his New Testament Letter of Jude to the Churches in the East that encourages the faithful to persevere and protect the faith in an especially difficult situation. Later in the 14th century in one of the visions of St. Bridget of Sweden, Jesus suggested that she invoke St. Jude with the following words, “In accordance with his surname, Thaddeus, the amiable or loving, he will show himself most willing to give help.” Yet another saint, St. Bernard, had a similar vision where he was told to pray to St. Jude during difficult times and to regard him as the “Patron Saint of the Impossible.” Devotion to St. Jude in the United States became popular in the early 20th century during the poverty of the Great Depression and the devastation of World War II providing great hope. Because of his powerful intercession and the astounding number of answered prayers, St. Jude Thaddeus quickly grew in popularity, easily becoming a favorite and one of the most loved saints. One of the best-known stories of St. Jude’s intercession was when the comedian and entertainer, Danny Thomas, during the Great Depression prayed to St. Jude promising he would build a shrine to the saint if he helped him find his way in life. Soon after he had his first success in show business and now the famous St. Jude Children’s Hospital is the fulfillment of that promise.

St. Rita also has the reputation as a saint of impossible causes. That is because in her life she overcame many impossible situations. Rita was married against her will at the age of 12 to a husband who treated her cruelly for 18 years. Her husband later relented and asked for fogivness but was murdered shortly after in a brawl. Her two sons vowed to seek revenge for their father's death but Rita was so against violence that she prayed her sons should rather die than to commit a mortal sin. Her prayers were answered because they both died of illnesses before they could commit murder. After her sons died, she tried to enter the Augustinians at Cascia but was refused not once but three times finally being allowed at the age of 32. In her life, she was known for her mystical experiences, penances and concern for others. After hearing a sermon on the crown of thorns, she suffered a permanent wound on her forehead. She brought back many to their faith with her prayers. Her very difficult life made her a favorite intercessor for those facing lost or hopeless causes.

Click here for our list of Patron Saints.


Prayers for Lost Causes

Novena To St. Jude

Most holy Apostle, St. Jude, faithful servant and friend of Jesus, the Church honors and invokes you universally, as the patron of difficult cases, of things almost despaired of, Pray for me, I am so helpless and alone.

Intercede with God for me that He bring visible and speedy help where help is almost despaired of. Come to my assistance in this great need that I may receive the consolation and help of heaven in all my necessities, tribulations, and sufferings, particularly –

(make your prayer request here)

– and that I may praise God with you and all the saints forever. I promise, O Blessed St. Jude, to be ever mindful of this great favor granted me by God and to always honor you as my special and powerful patron, and to gratefully encourage devotion to you. Amen.

Impossible Prayer to St. Rita

O powerful St. Rita, rightly called Saint of the Impossible, I come to you with confidence in my great need. You know well my trials, for you yourself were many times burdened in this life. Come to my help, speak for me, pray with me, intercede on my behalf before the Father. I know that God has a most generous heart and that he is a most loving Father. Join your prayers to mine and obtain for me the grace I desire (here mention your prayer request). You who were so very pleasing to God on earth and are so much so now in heaven, I promise to use this favor, when granted, to better my life, to proclaim God's mercy, and to make you more widely known and loved. Amen.


Related Patron Saint Jewelry and Rosaries

Buy some beautiful St. Jude or St. Rita jewelry to keep you or your loved one close to the patron saint of impossible causes and be a symbol of your faith.

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St Jude Medal - Sterling Silver Oval Pendant 3 Sizes
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St Jude Medal With 14KT Jump Ring - Boxed - 14kt Gold 7/8 x 1/2 Oval Pendant A9300
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St Rita Medal With 14KT Jump Ring - Boxed - 14kt Gold 7/8 x 1/2 Oval Pendant A9480
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