St. Joseph, Husband of Mary
The Bible pays Joseph the highest compliment: he was a "just" man. The quality meant a lot more than faithfulness in paying debts.
When the Bible speaks of God "justifying" someone, it means that God, the all-holy or "righteous" One, so transforms a person that the individual shares somehow in God's own holiness, and hence it is really "right" for God to love him or her. In other words, God is not playing games, acting as if we were lovable when we are not.
By saying Joseph was "just," the Bible means that he was one who was completely open to all that God wanted to do for him. He became holy by opening himself totally to God.
The rest we can easily surmise. Think of the kind of love with which he wooed and won Mary, and the depth of the love they shared during their marriage.
It is no contradiction of Joseph's manly holiness that he decided to divorce Mary when she was found to be with child. The important words of the Bible are that he planned to do this "quietly" because he was "a righteous man, yet unwilling to expose her to shame" (Matthew 1:19).
The just man was simply, joyfully, wholeheartedly obedient to God—in marrying Mary, in naming Jesus, in shepherding the precious pair to Egypt, in bringing them to Nazareth, in the undetermined number of years of quiet faith and courage.
The Bible tells us nothing of Joseph in the years after the return to Nazareth except the incident of finding Jesus in the Temple (see Luke 2:41--51). Perhaps this can be taken to mean that God wants us to realize that the holiest family was like every other family, that the circumstances of life for the holiest family were like those of every family, so that when Jesus' mysterious nature began to appear, people couldn't believe that he came from such humble beginnings: "Is he not the carpenter's son? Is not his mother named Mary...?" (Matthew 13:55a). It was almost as indignant as "Can anything good come from Nazareth?" (John 1:46b).
"He was chosen by the eternal Father as the trustworthy guardian and protector of his greatest treasures, namely, his divine Son and Mary, Joseph's wife. He carried out this vocation with complete fidelity until at last God called him, saying: 'Good and faithful servant, enter into the joy of your Lord'" (St. Bernardine of Siena).
Patron Saint of:
Saint of the Day
Lives, Lessons and Feast
By Leonard Foley, O.F.M.; revised by Pat McCloskey, O.F.M.
My soul longs for your presence, Lord.
"I am free."
Knowing that God loves me unconditionally, I look honestly over the last day, its events and my feelings.
The Word of God
Matthew 1:16, 18-21, 24
Begin to talk to Jesus about the piece of scripture you have just read. What part of it strikes a chord in you? Perhaps the words of a friend - or some story you have heard recently - will slowly rise to the surface of your consciousness. If so, does the story throw light on what the scripture passage may be trying to say to you?
Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit,
Meditation: Matthew 1:16, 18-21, 24
Saint Joseph, Spouse of the Blessed Virgin Mary
When Joseph awoke, he did as the angel of the Lord had commanded him. (Matthew 1:24)
Can you imagine a bumper sticker that says: My son is the Savior of the universe?
It's not uncommon for people to want to brag about their children or grandchildren. With social media outlets like Facebook and Twitter, bumper-sticker magnets, and custom T-shirts, people are finding more and more ways to show off every step or accomplishment of the kids that God has blessed them with.
Being proud of our children or grandchildren is a natural expression of love. We are often so amazed at the gifts that God has given them and the joy they bring to our lives that it's hard not to tell people about the great things they do. Yet there can be a fine line between rejoicing in God's goodness and prideful boasting. It can be hard at times to discern how much is too much.
But what if you knew that your child was the Messiah, the Son of God sent to redeem all people from sin? Wouldn't you have a tough time not bragging just a little bit?
On this feast day of St. Joseph, take a moment to think about this man's deep humility. Matthew's Gospel tells us that Joseph was a "righteous man" (Matthew 1:19). Still, it must have taken an amazing amount of self-discipline not to brag about his boy. It must have taken a heroic amount of humility not to use Jesus' special status to explain why he was going ahead with his marriage to Mary after it was discovered that she was pregnant. He knew that Jesus was the Son of God: the shepherds, Wise Men, and Simeon in the Temple all confirmed it. But Joseph never tried to hold Jesus apart from the rest of humanity.
Today, thank God for the good things that he has given you, especially your family. Make sure that you take the time to show them your love and your pride in seeing God's goodness in them. Mirror God's delight in them, and help them see how God wants to use them to change the world.
"Lord, give me the humble, righteous heart of St. Joseph. Help me to love and appreciate the people you have entrusted to me and to guide them wisely onto your path."
2 Samuel 7:4-5, 12-14, 16; Psalm 89:2-5, 27, 29; Romans 4:13, 16-18, 22
Today's 5minutos said:
"The Angel of the Lord announced to Joseph that he would be the father of the Messiah.
-Blessed are you, just man, descendant of David. Rejoice, that the Lord is with you and fills you with His grace and His favor. Do not be afraid Joseph, do not be disturbed by sad thoughts. Mary, blessed of God, is good and faithful. All has been a thing of God and the son to be born is fruit of the Spirit. Take her home, Joseph, as your wife, love her with all your strength of your youthful soul, and take care of this treasure, what is most valuable in this world. The son that is to be born shall be of God, who shall also be your son. Name Him Jesus, who saves; every time you call call Him, you will feel He saves you; and you will have many sons, Joseph.
-Joseph responded to the angel, whose name is Gabriel:
Thank you for this announcement that returns to me life. Tell the Lord that I do not know, that I am not of worth, but that He can count on me. I will take Mary into my house-she must have suffered also-. Thank you, Good Angel, for your word. Tell the Lord that yes, he said crying, tell Him yes, that yes, stammering, while the angel went away, smiling.
Pray for us, Saint Joseph, father of Christ and our protector. Pray for us today, because we need it so much. Pray for us at the end of our life, you, patron of a good death. That it may not be a tragic death, that it may not make suffer much, that it be a pious death, that it be a step of Easter. Amen "
Saint Joseph was the father on earth to our Lord Jesus. Jesus is the Father of many sons. How so? When He left, He left the Papa, the Pope, the Davidic Kingdom lives on. "The successors are chosen, they do not chose themselves" I read at Catholicbible101. Saint Joseph comes from the lineage of King David. The Kingdom lives forever, "the Kingdom is at hand". Jesus is the Father, the Teacher (even at 12 years of age), the Master, the King, our King. Think about what it means to live in His Kingdom. The Church was built upon a rock (Peter), the very Psalm we read and live. The angel told Joseph "do not be afraid". We too, do not be afraid. There is just so much we can be afraid of right? Our health concerns, our death concerns, our family concerns, but what about the Kingdom concerns? Is that the least of my priorities? I felt mostly unmoved yesterday, until a lady that runs an orphanage asked for money for food. She's never asked for that so I felt the need to answer the orphan's plea, and fittingly, the scriptures that day had said "Make justice your aim (Like St. Joseph): redress the wronged,hear the orphan's plea, defend the widow." So I reached out to everyone, emails and word of mouth. I was unmoved and silent mostly at the Knights of Columbus meeting at night, but something asked me to plea for the orphans. I was given a runaround answer by the council, but after the meeting, some brother Knights handed me money personally. This almost brought tears to my eyes. The Spirit of Saint Joseph, the father of the Holy Family lives on. Some gave a couple hundred, and one gave five bucks, but he doesn't have a job...Saint Joseph lives on. And so, before my kids went to bed, I asked all of us to pray. One 3yr. old cried loudly "but I don't want to pray, why do we have to pray every day!" and another 2yr. old wasn't around but she joined in from the dark saying with her big curls and big eyes, "I pray too". There was nothing easy about joining to pray, but it also almost moved me to tears, especially when the one yr. old boy was holding hands, let go, and knelt in the middle of our prayer circle, and we all followed suit, ending with a group hug. The boy, the son, brought us together, his name is Andres, meaning manly or brave. It takes a brave soul to kneel before all and show the way. Jesus was brave and manly, more than all as he took a knee to be scourged for our sins. What moves me is love. The love of my brothers, the love of God's family in action for His Kingdom. The orphans have no mother or father, but they do have fathers that care and mothers that watch them. What has been said is truth. We have a great carpenter that died for us, the Son of a Carpenter, died on a piece of wood, taking on beatings and death for the love of us and for us to be brave as well. Now that I am coming to the light a little more, there are no braver men and women in my book than those that take on the life of Christ. This courage is formed through humility and obedience, like Joseph and Mary, of which one was the lineage of Kings and the other of priests, joined in the Son of Man, the Son of God. Being chosen means so much, and you for reading this are blessed in the choice from above.
Let us be concerned for His Kingdom alone as Jesus was found when we lost Him at one time and then found Him where He Has always been...in Our Father's House.
image from foodforthepoor.org
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