Life of St. Joseph

St. JosephSt. Francis points out that one of the great virtues of St. Joseph was his constancy. When, seeing Our Lady with Child and not knowing how that could be, it must have caused him great distress! St. Joseph did not complain, he was not unkind, or less gracious towards his spouse; he did not mistreat her, but remained as gentle and as respectful to her as he had ever been.

St. Joseph demonstrated valor and strength. It takes a strong man to be humble and humility is seen throughout the whole course of St. Joseph's life. By his demeanor and humble acceptance of God's plan, St. Joseph was able to conquer the two great enemies of man, the devil and the world! With regard to perseverance, we must first recognize what St. Joseph was up against. St. Joseph was greatly tried by God, and even by people on his life's journey. The Angel commanded Joseph to set out quickly and to take Our Lady and the child Jesus into Egypt. Joseph set out at once without saying a word. He did not inquire, “Where shall I go? What road shall I take? How shall we find food? Who will receive us?” He set out immediately. In fact, he probably carried his carpenter's tools on his back, so he could still provide for his family. The Angel had not even told him how long he was to remain in Egypt! Not knowing when the Angel might command him to return, he could not establish himself in any permanent home. St. Joseph remained in a foreign country, assured in the fact that God who had commanded him to go, would again command him when he had to return. St. Joseph was always ready to obey.

Our Constitutions remind us that, “in the lives of the Saints, God shows Himself to us and speaks through them (#45)." St. Joseph is known as “the Just Man.” To be just is nothing else but to be perfectly united to the will of God, and to be conformed to it in all events, prosperous or adverse. It is this attachment to God's will that John Bosco wanted each Salesian Sister to embody.

Though thou hast recourse to many saints as thine intercessors, go especially to St. Joseph, for he has great power with God.

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