St. Jude was one of the Twelve Apostles. He was the son of Joseph and Salome (not the Salome of Bethlehem, not another) and the brother of James, the brother of the Lord. Joseph the carpenter had four sons with Salome: James, Hosea, Simon and Jude. This Jude is sometimes called “Jude, the brother of James” due to his brother being better-known (Luke 6:16, Acts 1:13). St. Jude begins his epistle in this manner: Jude, the servant of Jesus Christ, and brother of James (Jude 1:1). Even though he could call himself the brother of the Lord as much as James, he did not do this, out of humility and shame, for he did not at first believe in Christ the Lord. When the elderly Joseph, before his death, wanted to leave a portion of his estate to Jesus, as well as to his other children, all of them protested, even Jude. Only James voluntarily set aside a share of his portion and intended it for Jesus. Jude is also called Levi and Thaddaeus. There is another Thaddaeus of the Seventy Apostles (August 21), but this Thaddaeus or Jude was one of the Great Apostles. Jude preached the Gospel throughout Judea, Samaria, Galilee, Idumea, Syria, Arabia, Mesopotamia and Armenia. In Edessa, the town of Abgar, he augmented the preaching of the other Thaddaeus. When Jude was preaching in the regions around Ararat, he was captured by pagans, crucified on a cross and killed by being shot with arrows, that he might reign eternally in the Kingdom of Christ.
Source: St. Nikolai Velimirovic, The Prologue of Ohrid – Volume One.
We know thee as a kinsman of Christ and we laud thee with sacred hymns and songs as a most steadfast Martyr who trampled on error and who courageously kept the Faith. As we celebrate today thy holy remembrance, we receive forgiveness of our sins and transgressions, O Jude, through thy holy prayers.