Feast of St. Joseph – March 19

JOSEPH

Our Missionary Society wants to give priests afire with zeal to a world that needs them, so badly.

“We are what we are before God, and not what we seem to be in the eyes of men.” (Saint Francis of Assisi)

Our titles, our position, and our functions are of secondary importance, externals. They are merely what we appear to be in the eyes of men. However, what we are, what we are really worth is measured by the extent to which we live inwardly by our love of Christ.

Mary, a humble housewife, who kneaded bread and mended clothing; Joseph, a simple workman who made tools, wooden chests; Jesus, an apprentice carpenter, who worked in his father’s workshop, amid the smell of wood. Such did these three great souls appear in the eyes of men.

Joseph, an honest artisan, whose social position was far from brilliant, was none the less the man chosen because of his righteousness, to be – after Mary – the guardian and depositary of God’s secrets.

Cum esset justus!” He was perfect in all the virtues (Saint Leonard of Port Maurice). In Saint Joseph “were gathered all the wisdom and holiness of all the other saints taken together, so that his life might conform more closely to the lives of Jesus and Mary” (Saint Gregory Nazianzan). “To be just is to be perfectly united to the Will of God, and always to conform to it in every circumstance, whether propitious or adverse” (Saint Francis de Sales).

Silence, prayer, mental prayer, work: these words sum up Saint Joseph. They also sum up the Missionary of the Holy Apostles.

Written by Father Menard in the MSA Spiritual Directory Christmas 1962

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