Wednesday, March 19, 2014
An ordinary man on whom God relied – St Joseph
How does St. Joseph exercise his role as protector? Discreetly, humbly and silently, but with an unfailing presence and utter fidelity, even when he finds it hard to understand. – Pope Francis
Gospel text: (MT 1:16, 18-21, 24A)
Jacob was the father of Joseph, the husband of Mary.
Of her was born Jesus who is called the Christ.
Now this is how the birth of Jesus Christ came about.
When his mother Mary was betrothed to Joseph,
but before they lived together,
she was found with child through the Holy Spirit.
Joseph her husband, since he was a righteous man,
yet unwilling to expose her to shame,
decided to divorce her quietly.
Such was his intention when, behold,
the angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream and said,
“Joseph, son of David,
do not be afraid to take Mary your wife into your home.
For it is through the Holy Spirit
that this child has been conceived in her.
She will bear a son and you are to name him Jesus,
because he will save his people from their sins.”
When Joseph awoke,
he did as the angel of the Lord had commanded him
and took his wife into his home.
Today, the Church celebrates the solemnity of Saint Joseph, Mary's husband. Since the fourteenth century there has been a specific day set aside in the Roman calendar to honor him. He is viewed as the "Patron" of the universal Church, of all husbands and of social justice. He has also been designated as the patron of all workers, this Carpenter who taught the Word Incarnate, the Child Jesus, how to work with wood.
Though the Scriptures say little about Joseph, even that absence speaks volumes. Why? Because to Joseph, he was not the one who was important, others were. He loved Mary above himself and his behavior was "just" as a result of his love.
He was prepared to "do the right thing" when she was found to be with child. He could have chosen otherwise. How refreshing this upright manly behavior is in an age where men often cower in the face of difficulty.
There was not an ounce of false bravado or "machismo" in this servant of God. Joseph emptied himself in order to be filled with the love and life of God. He gave himself fully to God through accepting his unique and specific vocation as a guardian of the Redeemer. He still invites men to turn the ordinary into extraordinary through cooperation and participation in God's plan.
God is looking for “a few good men”, like Joseph, who will work in the “workshop of the world” that he created in order to recreate it anew in His Son.
In this age with few heroes, men should rediscover this true hero. Then, we need to follow his example by courageously, humbly and faithfully loving Jesus Christ. We need to learn to give our "Yes" to the God whose love always invites participation.
We Need Courageous men in this age to learn Joseph's Way. Let us decide this day to be among their number. St. Joseph, pray for us.
Posted by Joe Reciniello at 6:07 AM