“Joseph, son of David, do not be afraid…”Matthew 1:20
Today, we celebrate the feast day of St. Joseph. We don’t hear much about St. Joseph when we read the gospels. What we do know is that he was a faithful servant of God. When he discovered Mary was with child, he had decided to divorce her quietly to preserve her from any shame. But, God had a different plan. He sent an angel to Joseph, calming his fear the angel revealed God’s message to Joseph that he was to father Jesus. He was to protect Mary and Jesus, preserve the family.
Today in our culture, the basis and identity of family is dying. Our culture faces a high rate of divorce, children born outside of marriage and a push to redefine marriage with same sex unions.
In the midst of all this brokenness, God continues to pour out His love for His family, all His sons and daughters. It is through the obedience of the Holy family that God delivers us from the world in which we live in.
Mary and Joseph, both, from what we infer in the Bible were fearful when visited by an angel. The angel affirms to both of them that they have nothing to fear. Through the immense trust they had in God, they fulfilled God’s plan as mother and father to Jesus. Through their faithfulness, God fulfilled His plan of salvation for each of His beloved children. We each became adopted children in God’s family. We were no longer orphaned and separated from God, but brought to His bosom and nurtured.
Today as we meditate on St. Joseph’s life, let us ask his intercession for all of God’s family and preservation of the nuclear family. Pray for his protection of the unborn, the identity of marriage, and preservation of the unity of families.
St. Joseph, patron saint of fathers, the unborn, workers, travelers, immigrants, a happy death and the universal church, pray for us. Amen