Liturgical Colour : White
Dear brothers and sisters in Christ, on this day we celebrate the great feast of St. Joseph, the Spouse and husband of the Blessed Virgin Mary, the mother of our Lord Jesus Christ, and that makes him the foster-father of our Lord Jesus Christ. He is the legal and adoptive father of our Lord, because of his marriage to Mary, and he is a very essential figure whose actions were crucial in keeping the young Baby Jesus and Child Jesus safe through the world.
And it was also likely that an honourable man and servant of God as he was, he would have contributed greatly to the responsible upbringing of our Lord, guarding Him as He grew up as a Child, and providing for Him as all fathers had done. And in St. Joseph we saw the very important values of responsibility, of commitment, of devotion to God and to the works he has been entrusted to, which are some of those that we ourselves can apply to our own lives.
St. Joseph was an upright man who held righteousness and justice in highest esteem, and he has always lived in accordance to this principle, even though materially, he was just a simple and humble carpenter, making his work as a way to earn a living for his family. And from what information we can gather from the Gospel, it is evident that the people at that time did not respect much such a profession, which they likely thought to be menial and humiliating in nature.
But St. Joseph did not care about all that, he lived responsibly and with faith in the Lord, and he cared deeply for his family, and even most importantly for Jesus, as even though He was not his biological son, but St. Joseph treated Jesus as his own, and he protected Him from all dangers of the world when He was still young and defenceless. He brought his whole family to Egypt when king Herod, jealous and worried about Jesus, tried to kill Him by killing all the newborns in Jerusalem.
St. Joseph cared for his family as a father should have done, and he loved them with all of his heart, and truly, he is a role model to all fathers, and to all families. And as I have mentioned, his life and his works are also inspirations for us all to follow, in how we ought to live our lives as faithful brothers and sisters in our Lord. He did not cheat, or do anything that is wicked for the pursuit of worldly comfort, wealth and influence, and instead he was content with living a quiet and honest life with his family in Nazareth, as he helped to bring up Jesus with Mary.
As we celebrate the solemnity of this special day, the feast of St. Joseph our Lord’s foster father and the spouse of His mother Mary, all of us ought to remember whatever he had done, and all the things he had done in righteousness and justice, and endeavour to model ourselves after him. He was among the greatest of the saints because of his closeness to our Lord and Saviour, and there is much for us to learn from him.
Let us all ask ourselves, how often is it that we all have forgotten our duties and responsibilities to our own families? To our own neighbours and those whom we have been entrusted with? How many of us actually have done what we have been expected to do, and not to take shortcuts or take measures that benefit ourselves and disadvantaged others? Let us reflect on this and think about our actions, all that we have done.
Brothers and sisters in Christ, let us approach the Holy Week next week with a clear mind, and with a clear and renewed focus as we reflect on St. Joseph and his life, and in whatever things he had done in life, and in how he devotedly cared for his adopted Son, our Lord Jesus Christ. Let us model our lives after him, rejecting all forms of worldliness, greed and all desires that lead to selfishness and destruction.
And one more thing, that as St. Joseph guarded Jesus, he therefore also guards the whole Holy Church of God, which God Himself also likely entrusted to his intercession and protection. In the same way as he had cared for the Lord when He was young, St. Joseph is also concerned about the Church his adopted Son had established on earth, and about us all who believe in Jesus and are members of that Church.
Therefore, let us all today ask for the intercession and protection of St. Joseph for the whole Church, and let us also ask him to intercede for our sake, that all of us sinners may find our way to his adopted Son through his guidance and protection, and that he will inspire many of us, especially our young ones, to live our lives with faith, with responsibility and with hard work to reach out to God and to be worthy of Him in all things.
May God bless us all and strengthen our faith, and may He through the intercession of His foster-father, St. Joseph, be with us always and protect us and the whole Church at all times. God bless us all. Amen.