Friday, 1 May 2015

St. Joseph the Worker (Saint of the Day -- May 1st, 2015)

St. Joseph has two feast days - the second one, dedicated to St. Joseph the worker in particular, is today.

There is little about Joseph in the Scripture, however, we know that he the husband of Mary and the foster father of Jesus - he was a poor man and worked as a carpenter. An interesting fact, that many may not know, is that he came from the royal lineage of King David. In fact, the angel who first tells Joseph about Jesus greets him as "son of David".

Joseph was a kind, humble, and caring man. After they had been betrothed, he discovered that Mary was pregnant, yet he was still unaware that she bore the son of God, so he planned to divorce Mary as he believed the child was not his. Joseph was concerned for her in case she be accused of adultery, so her decided to divorce her quietly to not expose her to shame or cruelty. Joseph was also obedient to the will of God; when an angel visited him in a dream to reveal to him that Mary was bearing Jesus, Joseph immediately took Mary as his wife. Again, when the angel returned to warn him that his family was in danger, Joseph left at once with his wife and child, for he dearly loved his family and was always ready to protect them. 

St. Joseph is the patron of various things, including dying (because he died a happy death with Mary and Jesus by his side), the universal Church, fathers, carpenters, and social justice.

O Glorious St. Joseph, model of all those who are devoted to labor, obtain for me the grace to work conscientiously, putting the call of duty above my natural inclinations, to work with gratitude and joy, in a spirit of penance for the remission of my sins, considering it an honor to employ and develop by means of labor the gifts received from God, to work with order, peace, moderation and patience, without ever shrinking from weariness and difficulties, to work above all with purity of intention and detachment from self, having always death before my eyes and the account that I must render of time lost, of talents wasted, of good omitted, of vain complacency in success, so fatal to the work of God.

All for Jesus, all through Mary, all after thine example, O Patriarch, St. Joseph. Such shall be my watch-word in life and in death.

– Composed by St. Pius X



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