Patronage: The dying, the universal Church, fathers, carpenters and social justice.
While not much is said of Joseph in the bible, there is still much we can learn from this
First of all, if God saw Joseph as being a suitable father for His Son, we too can look to
Joseph as a fatherly figure for us. Before the incarnation, God knew that the Jews would kill Mary for conceiving a child outside of marriage. Therefore, God chose a man who would be able to look past the fact that his betrothed is pregnant and recognize the divine plan that was being unravelled. Joseph was so full of virtue that even before he knew how Mary became pregnant he protected her. Joseph chose to divorce her in secret as to save her from being stoned by the other Jews and to protect her dignity.
His true character and devotion to Yahweh was shown when he received the vision from the angel. Joseph accepted his mission without hesitation and immediately married Mary. Not only was he responsible for Mary's well being, but also the Son of God as his foster father. Just imagine Joseph teaching Jesus the scriptures and carpentry as He grew up.
Since St. Joseph is not mentioned during Jesus' public ministry it is presumed that he died
before then. That means that as Joseph died he had both Mary and Jesus at his side. This is
why Joseph became the patron saint of the dying, because what better way to go than in the
arms of Christ and His mother.
St. Joseph was first entrusted to the mother of Jesus, and now he has been entrusted to His
bride the Church. Just as he protected and loved Mary, so too does Joseph guide the Church
and protect her from all evil. In doing so, St. Joseph has earned the title of “Terror of
Fathers; use St. Joseph as your role model of virtue because he is your patron too. Just as
Jesus is our role model on how to be a good husband (dying for our brides), Joseph shows us
how to be a father by giving absolutely everything he had to his adopted Son. Teach your kids
virtue and morality. Be their spiritual guide and help them learn the sacred scriptures. But
most of all, be an example of faith and love of God for them. When they look up to you, make
sure your eyes are looking up as well. That way, they can come to know their eternal Father.
St. Joseph, pray for us.
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