This weekly column will give you some information about St. Joseph to ponder and discuss throughout the year. Get to know Joseph!
Read Pope Francis' the Apostolic Letter “Patris corde” (“With a Father’s Heart”) here.
Pope Benedict XVI: God alone could grant Joseph the strength to trust the angel. God alone will give you, dear married couples, the strength to raise your families as he wants.
To think about: Even as we go to the saints for assistance, to our good friends in Heaven, we should always remember all we receive is from Our Lord. As we get to know St. Joseph and other saints, remember all is from God and thank God for everything. God has given us the saints to be intercessors and examples. As the Year of St. Joseph ends, you can ask St. Joseph to direct you to some other saint to help you on your path to Heaven.
Blessed Gabriele Allegra: “[St. Joseph] is truly the saint who carried out his duty in silence but with angelic fervor.”
To think about: It’s often hard to just do our job, or our chores, quietly without wanting to be noticed or thanked. It can also be hard to do all our daily, monotonous chores with fervor. We are called to offer all our actions to Our Lord throughout the day. Keeping that in mind should help us do our best in everything, as a gift to the Lord.
St. John Paul II: “In Joseph, the apparent tension between the active and contemplative life finds its ideal harmony that is only possible for those who possess the perfection of charity.”
To think about: How well do we navigate between our active and the contemplative life? It is important to spend quiet time alone with the Lord daily, but our modern life often makes it difficult to quiet our minds and schedule this important prayer time.
Pope Benedict XVI: “Saint Joseph was the spouse of Mary. In the same way, each father sees himself entrusted with the mystery of womanhood through his wife.”
Something to think about: “the mystery of womanhood”… We probably realize that in the Holy Family, each member was aware of the mystery of the other. In our own lives, we should also try to become aware of the mystery of each of our loved ones. As we get to know each other in marriage and in the family, over the years, we should always be getting to know each other in a deeper way, and learning new things about the mystery of the other.
St. Teresa of Avila: “I do not remember that I ever asked [St. Joseph] at any time for anything which he did not obtain for me. It fills me with amazement when I consider the numberless graces which God has granted me through the intercession of this blessed saint, and the perils, both body and soul, from which he has delivered me.”
To think about: St. Theresa was very close to Our Lord, even to have ecstasies. And yet she also went to Joseph for help. You are in good company when you go to Joseph for his intercession.
Venerable Pope Pius XII: “Grant that we may not lose sight of Jesus, who busied himself with you at your carpenter’s bench.”
To ponder: St. Joseph taught Jesus his trade when Jesus was a child. Think about Joseph working in his workshop – cutting wood or carving in stone – all the while teaching Jesus, letting Jesus do some work as he grew older, encouraging him as he learned, correcting his workmanship, and keeping track of him when he went wandering. How do we interact with our children or those we work with? Do we accept correction humbly? Ask Saint Joseph to help us be patient with others as we work with them and with those who are helping us improve.
Pope Benedict XVI: “Like Joseph, do not be afraid to take Mary into your home.”
To think about: Joseph took care of Mary and Jesus. As we imitate Joseph, we will become closer to Mary. Think about the relationship between Mary and Joseph, and some of the conversations they might have had, and how that relationship might have changed over the years.
Pope Pius XI: “In a life of faithful performance of everyday duties, [St. Joseph] left an example for all those who must gain their bread by the toil of their hands.”
To think about: We all have manual labor to do as part of life, either at our job or at home. Sometimes we don’t appreciate how we serve God even when we are doing yard work, housework, and such. From the beginning God gave man work, to “till and keep” the garden. Do we perform our manual labor to glorify God as we work? Do we appreciate the importance of our work?