19 March – Solemnity of St. Joseph, husband of the Blessed Virgin Mary
Joseph is a descendant of the house of David. A layman and a carpenter, he was the earthly spouse of the Blessed Virgin Mary, and foster and adoptive father of Jesus Christ. He was a visionary who was visited by angels, and is noted for his willingness to immediately get up and do what God told him.
Prayer to St. Joseph
Blessed Joseph, husband of Mary, be with us this day.
You protected and cherished the Virgin;
loving the Child Jesus as your Son,
you rescued Him from the danger of death.
Defend the Church, the household of God,
purchased by the blood of Christ.
Guardian of the Holy Family,
be with us in our trials.
May your prayers obtain for us
the strength to flee from error
and wrestle with the powers of corruption
so that in life we may grow in holiness
and in death rejoice in the crown of victory.
-Patron Saint Index
2 Samuel 7:4-5,12-14,1
The word of the Lord came to Nathan:
‘Go and tell my servant David, “Thus the Lord speaks: “When your days are ended and you are laid to rest with your ancestors, I will preserve the offspring of your body after you and make his sovereignty secure. (It is he who shall build a house for my name, and I will make his royal throne secure for ever.) I will be a father to him and he a son to me; if he does evil, I will punish him with the rod such as men use, with strokes such as mankind gives. Yet I will not withdraw my favour from him, as I withdrew it from your predecessor. Your House and your sovereignty will always stand secure before me and your throne be established for ever.”’
The promise of inheriting the world was not made to Abraham and his descendants on account of any law but on account of the righteousness which consists in faith. That is why what fulfils the promise depends on faith, so that it may be a free gift and be available to all of Abraham’s descendants, not only those who belong to the Law but also those who belong to the faith of Abraham who is the father of all of us. As scripture says: I have made you the ancestor of many nations – Abraham is our father in the eyes of God, in whom he put his faith, and who brings the dead to life and calls into being what does not exist.
Though it seemed Abraham’s hope could not be fulfilled, he hoped and he believed, and through doing so he did become the father of many nations exactly as he had been promised: Your descendants will be as many as the stars. This is the faith that was ‘considered as justifying him.’
Jacob was the father of Joseph the husband of Mary; of her was born Jesus who is called Christ.
This is how Jesus Christ came to be born. His mother Mary was betrothed to Joseph; but before they came to live together she was found to be with child through the Holy Spirit. Her husband Joseph; being a man of honour and wanting to spare her publicity, decided to divorce her informally. He had made up his mind to do this when the angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream and said, ‘Joseph son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary home as your wife, because she has conceived what is in her by the Holy Spirit. She will give birth to a son and you must name him Jesus, because he is the one who is to save his people from their sins.’ When Joseph woke up he did what the angel of the Lord had told him to do.
Joseph son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary home as your wife.
Back when I was younger, my hands and my classmates’ hands would shoot up when our teacher asked us who would want to do an errand for her. Sometimes, she would send me, sometimes, she would send another whose hand was raised. Sometimes, she would send someone who did not even raise his hand.
In the first reading, Daving volunteered to build a house for God but God told him it was not for him to build. In the Gospel, Joseph decided to divorce Mary but God told him to take care of Mary and Jesus. Why doesn’t God just send those who volunteered? Why would God choose those who did not volunteer?
I do not have an answer. All I know is that I would need humility and obedience in both cases. That’s where God is consistent. He wants our total surrender.
To be or not to be? Just obey with humility.
(Today’s OXYGEN by Stephanie Villa)
Prayer: Lord, you work in ways I don’t understand. Sometimes, it frustrates me. And if you always want me to surrender, please give me the grace to do it.
Thanksgiving: Thank you, Lord, for the opportunities you gave me to serve you and to show my love for you. Thank you just the same when you said ‘No’ to my proposal.