Monday, 20 March 2023 : Solemnity of St. Joseph, Spouse of the Blessed Virgin Mary (Homily and Scripture Reflections)

Liturgical Colour : White

Dear brothers and sisters in Christ, today the Church celebrates the great Solemnity of St. Joseph, the Spouse of the Blessed Virgin Mary, Mother of God, and who was also the Foster-father of the Saviour of the world and Son of God, Jesus Christ, Our Lord. That is why St. Joseph was accorded with such a great honour by the Church, as one of the important member of the Holy Family of Jesus, Mary and Joseph, and as the one who had taken care of the Lord in His early age, and was a great father figure to Him and a devoted husband to his wife, Mary, the Mother of God. That was why, over a century and half ago, St. Joseph was declared the Protector of the Church by Blessed Pope Pius IX, as the patron and intercessor for the whole Universal Church, the one we can look up for guidance and inspiration in the way how he himself had lived his life with great faith and dedication to God and also to his family.

In our first reading today, we heard from the Book of the prophet Samuel in which God spoke to the prophet Nathan the words that he was to deliver to King David of Israel, detailing what God had intended for him and his family. King David was one of the most righteous and greatest among the kings of Israel, and he was full of love for the Lord and was also a great shepherd, guide and leader for the people entrusted to his care by God, just the way how he cared for his sheep when he was still a shepherd in his youth. God therefore reassured David that his rule and reign over Israel, and that of his descendants, the reign of the House of David will last forever, and the descendants of David will always sit on the Throne of Israel. God had blessed David and his house, his descendants, and as long as they were faithful to the Lord, the kingdom of the people of God flourished and prospered.

However, it was not always that the kings, the descendants of David had been faithful to God. Many of the kings beginning with Solomon himself, the son and successor of David, and the kings of Judah were unfaithful to God and were wicked in their way of life and actions. Thus, the fortunes of the kingdom of God’s people waned and eventually, as many of them remained unfaithful to God and committed great sins against God, the kingdom was destroyed and crushed, and the people of God scattered to many places. Yet, God still provided for those whom He loved, including even those who have sinned against Him. He gathered back the Israelites and preserved the descendants of David, through whom eventually St. Joseph was born, as the heir of David. It was through St. Joseph that the Lord Jesus became known as the ‘Son of David’ or the ‘Heir of David’. Despite them not biologically related, but the legal marriage of St. Joseph to Mary, the Lord’s Mother, made Jesus to be the legal heir of David.

Then we heard in our second reading today from St. Paul and his Epistle to the Church and the faithful in Rome, of the Lord’s promises made to Abraham and his descendants, of the Covenant that He has established with all of them. The Lord called Abraham from the land of his ancestors and for his faithfulness, righteousness and commitment to Him, He established a Covenant with him and his descendants, promising that he would become the father of many nations, and everything that God had promised did come true in the end. This was just like what He has promised to David, and God showed His promises coming true in all occasions, of which Christ is the culmination and fulfilment of all those promises. How is that so, brothers and sisters in Christ? That is because through Christ, Who has come into this world as the Son of God born in the flesh and adopting our human nature, all of us have been made children of God by adoption as well, and every one of us through this spiritual link to Abraham, have made the latter our father in faith as well.

Not only that, but God also fulfilled the promises He made to David, for Jesus Christ came to be the One to sit on the Throne of David for eternity, to be the one true and eternal King over all of God’s people, and hence, the House of David does indeed last forever as God had intended it. Yet, it was their righteousness, those of Abraham and David, as well as St. Joseph, that brought about this justification and grace in the first place. God saw what was inside man’s heart, even to the deepest parts within us that we may not even be aware of. He saw in all of these faithful predecessors of ours, a strong and dedicated love for Him, and the love for righteousness and justice in all things, and the desire to follow Him wholeheartedly, as they had done in their whole lives. St. Joseph in particular was known to be an upright figure, righteous and hardworking, dedicated and committed to God much in the same way as his ancestors, Abraham and David had lived their lives.

In our Gospel passages today, the two Gospel choices we have both highlighted the actions of St. Joseph in the brief mention of his story in the Gospel narratives, as much of the Gospels are focused on the later ministry of the Lord Jesus rather than on His early life. From the Gospel of St. Matthew we heard how St. Joseph took care of the Holy Family, of the Lord and Mary, His mother, when danger was about to come for the Holy Child. Back then, King Herod the Great wanted to kill the Child Jesus, having seen Him as a rival and danger to his own hold on the throne of Judea and his other lands, which was then tenuous at best. King Herod did not even hesitate to order the slaughter of all the innocent children in Bethlehem aged two and below, in order to eradicate this potential threat to him and his rule. St. Joseph was therefore warned by God to bring the Child Jesus and His mother to Egypt, in order to hide there for a while until those who sought His death had passed on.

St. Joseph obeyed this dutifully and carried on his role as the Protector and the father figure of the Holy Family with genuine dedication and commitment. While details are very scant of what happened in those years, St. Joseph must have taken good care of both the Lord and Mary, his wife, and cared for them, bringing them back to Nazareth after everything had stabilised as the Lord commanded it. Then in the other Gospel passage today from the Gospel of St. Luke, we heard of the account of the moment when the Lord Jesus stayed behind in the Temple of Jerusalem at the age of twelve. St. Joseph was there together with Mary, His mother, as they searched for Him and found Him in the Temple. It was mentioned how the Lord obeyed His parents and went back with them to Nazareth, and how He grew in stature and wisdom in the world, in the eyes of God and man alike.

This must have been contributed by St. Joseph, which in the face of the lack of details of what exactly happened, but he must have brought up the Lord Jesus well, and taught Him what he knew of the Law and commandments of God, guiding and teaching Him in the same path of righteousness and justice that St. Joseph himself had allowed all his life. The lack of mention of St. Joseph in the later parts of the Gospels during the Lord’s ministry and according to the Apostolic traditions suggest that St. Joseph had passed away before the Lord Jesus embarked on His ministry, but his role in bringing up, caring and taking care of his foster Son, is something that all of us as Christians should very well take heed on, and remember as we ourselves carry on living our lives in this world. All of us are called and reminded particularly during this season of Lent, to be faithful and committed to God, and to be righteous and just in our way of life, just as St. Joseph and our other holy predecessors had done.

Hence, brothers and sisters in Christ, let us all reflect how we can be better disciples and followers of the Lord from now on, by following the inspirations and examples from our holy predecessors, like that of Abraham and King David, but especially in particular from that of St. Joseph, so that we may also be truly worthy of being called God’s children, His holy people. Let us all make good use of the time and opportunities provided to us, particularly during this season of Lent, so that we may redirect our focus and attention in this life to the path that God has shown and taught us to follow. Let us all ask our patron and protector, the great St. Joseph, our great role model and guide to intercede for us and to help us so that we will always strive to be righteous, good and faithful in our way of life, and remain firm in our commitment to the Lord, the way that St. Joseph himself had done in his life. May God bless us all and be with us in our journey of faith throughout life. Amen.

Saturday, 19 March 2022 : Solemnity of St. Joseph, Spouse of the Blessed Virgin Mary (Homily and Scripture Reflections)

Liturgical Colour : White

Dear brothers and sisters in Christ, this day we celebrate the great Solemnity of St. Joseph, the Spouse of the Blessed Virgin Mary. On this great St. Joseph’s day, we celebrate this wonderful man of God who had so faithfully dedicated his whole life to God’s service, and who had shown us what it means for us to be disciples and followers of the Lord, by our faith and actions. As the Spouse of Mary, the Mother of God, St. Joseph was also the Foster-Father of the Lord, as although he was not the biological father of the Lord, but he was His legal father, through his marriage to Mary, our Lord’s Mother.

St. Joseph dedicated his life to the Lord and to do His will. He has always lived virtuously and honourably, a model Christian in all things. Although he was just merely a humble carpenter of a small village at the periphery of the Jewish world at that time, St. Joseph was indeed a great man, one whom God had chosen to be the instrument through whom He would enter into the world and perform His works. St. Joseph was also the upright and courageous man who have always shown love for both God and for his fellow men.

St. Joseph whose feast we celebrate today is the great Protector of the Church and all of us Christians just as he is the loyal, committed and faithful Protector of the Holy Family. And we remember all that he had done in caring for the Holy Family, that is first and foremost in how he laboured hard to protect the vulnerable Child Jesus from the hands of His enemies, all those who sought for His death. He protected Jesus and Mary from harm even before Jesus was born, caring for Mary and helping her to find a lodging as she and St. Joseph made their way down to Bethlehem for the census of the Emperor Augustus.

And later on St. Joseph brought Mary and Jesus to Egypt fleeing from the hands of King Herod, who wanted the Child Jesus to be killed, as the former saw the Lord as a threat and rival to his power. St. Joseph followed the word and advice of the Angel of God who told him to bring his family out to Egypt. He cared for them there and brought Mary and Jesus back to Nazareth after the enemies of the Lord had passed on. He was truly a great father and a righteous man, dedicating himself and his life to the mission that has been entrusted to him. He might be just a mere lowly carpenter often looked down by everyone else, but his virtues and greatness far surpassed anything else.

Through St. Joseph, Our Lord Jesus was born legally as the Heir and Son of David, as according to the genealogy that we heard today from the Gospel of St. Matthew, Joseph was the rightful heir of David, born of his line and house, and therefore, just as the Lord promised to David that his rule, house and kingdom would be forever firm, these all were fulfilled in Christ. Through Jesus Christ, God has come into this world, to reign as our King, claiming the Kingship of His forefather David, and reestablish the true Kingdom of God in this world.

But as I have mentioned just earlier, we celebrate the glorious memory of St. Joseph more than just because he was the foster-father of Our Lord and Saviour. It was because of his great virtues and righteousness that we rejoice to have such a great role model and inspiration in our own lives. St. Joseph is that great example whom we can follow in our own lives, as we look upon him as our guide in our own journey of faith through life towards God. We are constantly reminded that we too have to be righteous, good and committed in our lives, walking with God and helping to guide one another in faith towards Him.

That is why, in this season of Lent, all of us are called to look upon the good examples set by St. Joseph and we are called to emulate him in our own lives, reminding ourselves to be more righteous and just, more committed to follow the Lord by following the examples of St. Joseph, who laboured hard in life with honesty and justice, not minding his own personal desires, ambition, ego or greed. He placed God above all else and the mission that He has entrusted to him, he has carried out with patience and virtue all the same.

All of us must remember that as Christians we have to exhibit these virtues in life, in our every moments and actions, in whatever we say and do. Let us really make good use of the time and opportunity afforded to us this Lent for us to rediscover our faith in God, reconnect our lives to Him, reorientate our ways, thoughts and all the things we say and do, that all those may come harmoniously along with God and His path. Let us all do our very best and come ever closer to God and His salvation, that we may be filled with His grace and love, at all times.

May God be with us all, and may He empower each and every one of us that we may always walk faithfully in His presence, and may He bless all of our actions and works, and may St. Joseph, the Protector of the Holy Family and the Protector of the Church, intercede for us always, and help us through his inspirations and his prayers, that we may always walk courageously as he himself had done, in the path of his foster Son, Our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ. St. Joseph, holy saint of God, pray for us! Amen.

Tuesday, 19 March 2019 : Solemnity of St. Joseph, Spouse of the Blessed Virgin Mary (Homily and Scripture Reflections)

Liturgical Colour : White

Dear brothers and sisters in Christ, on this day we celebrate together the great Solemnity of St. Joseph, the Spouse of the Blessed Virgin Mary, the foster-father of Our Lord and God, Jesus Christ. St. Joseph was a humble and simple carpenter of the village of Nazareth, probably uneducated and poor, unremarkable and unknown, and yet, God chose him to be the one who would protect and be part of the Holy Family into which He was to send His Saviour.

St. Joseph was the heir of David, as he was descended from David’s son, king Solomon, as well as the rightful kings of Judah of the house of David, and then to their heirs in exile in Babylon and after the return to the Promised Land. St. Joseph was the forgotten heir to the kingdom of Israel, who was so unknown that even in his own village, he was not highly regarded and later on, the Lord Jesus would be ridiculed for being supposedly the mere Son of the village carpenter when He came to proclaim His truth in Nazareth.

God chose St. Joseph because of the great virtues exhibited by his life and actions, which exemplified righteousness. St. Joseph was highlighted in the Scripture as an upright and just man, who always acted in obedience to the laws and the commandments of God, and yet at the same time, also constantly cared for his fellow men, keeping others around him in his thought. This is made evident by the accounts of the Scripture although St. Joseph did not appear many times in the Bible.

St. Joseph was a God-fearing and righteous man, because he knew and understood the precepts of the Law. When he heard that Mary was with Child even though she has not even married and consummated the marriage with him yet, St. Joseph obeyed the Law and wanted to break the engagement with her. Yet, at the same time, he was also considerate and compassionate, as he wanted to do so in secret, knowing that had he divorced Mary in public, she would have been stoned to death.

He was a righteous man who was responsible as well as loving, as shown in how he willingly took up Mary to be his wife and embrace the Lord Jesus Christ as his own Son, despite him not being biologically related to Him. He willingly took care of the Lord Jesus as a legal father and He as his Foster-Son, as if He is of his own flesh and blood. He followed wherever the Lord led his path, when the census called him and the rest of the Holy Family to travel the long journey to Bethlehem, taking care of the heavily pregnant Mary along the way.

St. Joseph also protected Mary and the Baby Jesus, when king Herod wanted to slaughter all the babies and children below the age of two in his attempt to eliminate the threat to his kingdom. When the Angel of God came to him and told him to bring his family into Egypt to keep them safe there, St. Joseph willingly obliged and guided Mary and the Child Jesus to the land of Egypt for a period of time until it was safe for them to return back to Nazareth.

In all of these, we have seen how St. Joseph was truly a great father figure to Our Lord Jesus Christ, Our Lord and Saviour. Although He is the Divine Word Incarnate, God in the flesh, Son of God, but He is also the Son of Man, born of man and having the frailness of the human body, save that of sin. When He was a mere Baby and a young Child, St. Joseph as a father to Him must have taken good care of Him, and prepared Him for the life and works that had been entrusted to Him.

As all fathers at that time did, St. Joseph must have also taught the Lord Jesus how He ought to live in this world, teaching Him important skills in life, and helping Him to grow in wisdom and faith. This is why the role that St. Joseph plays in our faith and in the Church is not one that is insignificant. In fact, that is why Blessed Pope Pius IX declared St. Joseph as the Patron and Protector of the Universal Church in the year of Our Lord 1870.

There are many things that we can learn from the examples shown by St. Joseph. And we are called to follow these good examples in our own lives, in how we act in righteous ways, obeying the Lord and also loving Him. Thus, today, we look up to St. Joseph, holy father and protector of the Church, asking him to intercede for our sake, the faithful and the Church of God, so that God may grant us all the strength to persevere through the challenges and difficulties, trials and oppositions we may encounter.

And let us all keep on remembering the righteousness and courage that St. Joseph has shown, in all of his actions, in being a good role model for his Foster-Son, Our Lord Jesus. Let us all also learn from him, and try our best to live our lives better and more attuned to the ways of God, that we may grow ever closer to Him, particularly during this blessed season of Lent. Let us all rediscover that love which we ought to have for God, and do our best to be righteous at all times. May God bless us always, now and forevermore. Amen.

Monday, 19 March 2018 : Solemnity of St. Joseph, Spouse of the Blessed Virgin Mary (Homily and Scripture Reflections)

Liturgical Colour : White

Dear brothers and sisters in Christ, on this day we celebrate together as the whole Church, the great Solemnity of the Protector of the Church, Foster father of Our Lord Jesus Christ, that is St. Joseph, the husband of Mary, Mother of God and Our Lord. The Church places St. Joseph in a very honourable place because of his closeness to Our Lord Jesus, as the foster father who protected and guided Him in His early years of earthly life, and also because of his righteousness and faith in God.

St. Joseph was the crucial link between God and His long awaited promise to Adam, Abraham, David and all those to whom He has made His Covenants with. First of all, St. Joseph was the legal father of Our Lord even though he was not His biological father, as the Lord was incarnate by the Holy Spirit in the womb of Mary, His mother and not conceived by earthly means unlike that of any other men. Through that legal fatherhood, Jesus Our Lord and Saviour became a descendant of Adam, Abraham, David and all mentioned earlier.

In our first reading today we heard about the exchange between the prophet Nathan and king David, who spoke about the building of the Temple of God in Jerusalem. If we read through the book of the prophet Samuel and the book of Kings we will realise that David had really wanted to build a House for God, and made lots of preparation for it. But God told him that it was not him who would build a House for him, but his son.

In this, we can see two interpretations of what God told to David through His prophet Nathan. The first one is the literal one, meaning that the son of David, king Solomon would be the one to build a magnificent Temple worthy of God, and which was indeed henceforth remembered after him as Solomon’s Temple. But there is a second, parallel meaning that if we read the entirety of the Old and the New Testament, then we will understand it better.

What is this, brothers and sisters in Christ? It is the Lord Jesus, Who was born as the legal Son of St. Joseph, who himself was the legal heir and descendant of David. As such, that was why Our Lord Jesus was also known as the Son of David. When a blind man heard that Jesus was approaching in one of the Gospel accounts, he shouted, ‘Son of David, have mercy on me!’ highlighting this relationship that Our Lord has with His ancestor David, the king of Israel.

And if Solomon built the physical Temple of Jerusalem, the first Temple built in the honour of God and known by many as Solomon’s Temple, then the Lord Jesus came into this world as the Temple itself, for He is indeed Man and God, having human and divine natures united in His person. He spoke of this when He told the chief priests and the Pharisees that He would tear down the Temple and in three days, He would rebuild it again, which alluded to His crucifixion, death and resurrection from the dead.

So, brothers and sisters in Christ, through St. Joseph, we see there is a clear link between what God had promised to His people in the ages past, and what He has fulfilled through Jesus Christ His Son, Whom He had sent into the world for our salvation, by His death and resurrection from the dead. Through His suffering and death, He fulfilled the promises He made to us from long ago, that He would save us from our sins, and we will enjoy forever the grace of His blessings and love.

And how did St. Joseph fit in all these? St. Joseph, just as Mary is, is a role model for all of us Christians, through his exemplary lifestyle and commitment to the mission he was entrusted with by God. St. Joseph was an upright man and a steadfast believer in God, and he acted with justice and with faith, even treating Mary fairly when she apparently became pregnant before she was married to him. He did not want to disgrace her by divorcing her publicly.

But the Lord revealed to him that Mary’s pregnancy was part of God’s greater plan, the long awaited salvation of all mankind, that St. Joseph would play a big part in. St. Joseph trusted in God and followed whatever he was told to do, protecting Mary and the baby Jesus during the earliest days of His infancy, and bringing them both to Egypt when king Herod wanted to have the Baby Jesus killed.

Even though it was not mentioned explicitly in the Gospels, St. Joseph must have had a significant role in the upbringing of the young Jesus, as He grew up to be a fine and healthy adulthood, by teaching Him many crafts of the world. It was indeed possible that Jesus was a carpenter like His foster father, St. Joseph, or at least have learnt the craftsmanship of a carpenter from him.

All of these tell us that as Christians we should devote ourselves and live our lives much as St. Joseph has lived his. We should be upright in our dealings and in our actions, and put God first and foremost in our minds and in our hearts. Unfortunately many of us Christians do not live by this standard, and instead, we take part in selfish attitudes such as gossiping, plotting against one another and being conceited, above all other things. It is even often that we Christians have done all sorts of actions unbecoming of us as those who profess to be faithful to God.

Brothers and sisters in Christ, on this day all of us are called to reflect on our own lives, and on all that we have done in our lives. Have we been faithful to the Lord in our actions and deeds? If we have not done so, then perhaps it is indeed time for us to change ourselves, by turning ourselves from our sins and wicked actions, and by spending more time with God, in prayer and in loving devotion.

And we are also called to do what we can to help our brothers and sisters, by being charitable and caring for those who are suffering and those who have no one to love them and to care for them. This is our calling as Christians, following in the footsteps of God’s saints, particularly that of St. Joseph. After all, God has loved us first, and He loved us so much that He sent us Jesus, His own beloved Son. Why can’t we love Him in the same manner, and why can’t we love one another in the same way?

Let us ask St. Joseph for his intercession, that he will always intercede and pray for us, and for the sake of God’s Church. Just as he had been entrusted with the care of the Lord Jesus in His youth and the Holy Family, let us ask him for his protection and prayers, that each and every one of us Christians may be able to draw ever closer to God, and therefore find our way to His salvation. May the Lord bless us all, now and forevermore. Amen.

Monday, 20 March 2017 : Solemnity of St. Joseph, Spouse of the Blessed Virgin Mary (Homily and Scripture Reflections)

Liturgical Colour : White
Dear brothers and sisters in Christ, today we celebrate the great solemnity and feast of St. Joseph, the Foster-father of our Lord Jesus Christ by the virtue of his marriage to Mary, the mother of God. While it was through both Joseph and Mary that the Lord Jesus was born into the family of the descendants of Israel and Abraham, it was through St. Joseph that the Lord was the rightful heir of David, the great king of Israel.

In the genealogy of Jesus, it was mentioned His descent from Adam and Abraham, as well as the descent from David through the line of the kings of Israel and Judah, and down to the ancestors of our Lord to the time when the Lord deemed it right for His glorious Saviour Jesus to enter into the world, at the end of the genealogy mentioned, as the perfect fulfilment of God’s promise to all of His people throughout the ages. God is indeed forever faithful.

When mankind first fell into sin at the time of Adam and his wife, Eve, God promised to mankind that He will save them from the evils of Satan, the great enemy who had tempted and deceived our ancestors to sin against God. He promised a deliverance that was to come through the sons of man, through the Woman who would bear the salvation for the whole world. All these were fulfilled through Mary, who bore Jesus the Son of Man and Son of God, Saviour of all mankind.

But God did not stop there, and He renewed His promises made to our forefathers, beginning from Abraham, the father of many nations, with whom God first made a Covenant with His people. God promised Abraham and called him to follow Him, that He will bless him because of his great faith and obedience to His ways and His laws.

God kept His word and gave the son which He had promised Abraham, through whom He became the father of many nations and peoples, many tribes and groups, and eventually, the Lord also fulfilled His promise to Abraham, that the glory of his name will remain forever, for among his descendants, the Lord and Master of the Universe Himself is counted among them.

And to David, the descendant of Abraham and Israel, God had given the kingship over Israel as He had promised to him, because of his great faith and obedience to God, over that of Saul, who was the first king of Israel but who was disobedient and committed grave sins against God. God promised David that his descendants will remain on the throne of Israel forever, and his kingdom will be forever firm.

It might seem that God did not fulfil this promise when the kingdom of Israel was torn apart into the northern kingdom of Israel and the southern kingdom of Judah, and when the line of the kings ended in Judah as the Babylonians destroyed Jerusalem and ended the southern kingdom of Judah. However, in reality, God fulfilled the promise He had made yet again with the coming of Christ, Who is the Heir of David through St. Joseph, and He reestablished the kingdom which God had given to David, and this time, His kingdom will never end.

Through Jesus God had fulfilled the promises He had made to all mankind, in the past, present and in the future to come. Through St. Joseph, God had made Himself to be the Heir to all that God had promised to all of our forefathers, from the time of Adam, to Abraham, to David, and ultimately to all of us. God is always faithful, and He did not abandon us to our sins and to our destruction.

And St. Joseph as the foster-father of our Lord Jesus, besides giving Him the means to be the Heir of David and Abraham, he was also very crucial for our Lord especially in the early years of His life on earth. For it was St. Joseph, in the Gospels we read, who protected Him from all those who was looking for His death, from Herod the Great who wanted Jesus dead as He was a rival to his own kingship, and all other dangers and difficulties.

St. Joseph was a hardworking and patient man, a righteous and just person, who obeyed the Lord and His precepts, who was a role model and an exemplary father to Jesus our Lord, Who in His humanity was born a fragile baby in Bethlehem, Who needed to learn the tools and trade, the ways of this world. And St. Joseph, together with Mary, His mother certainly provided all that the young Jesus needed.

In the person of St. Joseph, we can see the qualities of the faithful people of God in the past, namely Abraham, whose faith in God was so great, that he placed his complete trust in Him. St. Joseph trusted in God in His plans, even though Mary, when she was still just betrothed to him, conceived a Child without any intercourse with him. But he placed his full trust in God, and carried out his obligations as a father just as much as if Jesus is his own biological son.

St. Joseph is the head of the Holy Family, of Jesus, Mary and Joseph. He did his duties as a loving and faithful father, filled with love, care and concern for Jesus and Mary, even though these two persona often surpassed him in renown and he was often eclipsed by their importance. He committed himself to the care of the young Jesus, equipping Him with what He needed in life, and thus He grew well and blessed by God, ready for His mission.

The commitment which St. Joseph gave to his mission made him a great model for all of us Christians throughout the world, and just as he watched closely over the young Jesus, he still indeed continues to watch over the whole Church that Jesus had established in this world, as the great patron saint and protector of the whole Universal Church, a title and role that the Church itself had officially recognised as belonging to the great patron saint, St. Joseph, whose feast and honour we remember today.

Let us all reflect on all the good deeds St. Joseph had done, and how the Lord has also loved us all and how He has been faithful to all of His promises throughout the ages, all being fulfilled through Christ His Messiah, through Whom all of us have received the promise of everlasting life by our faith in Him. In this time of preparation, during this season of Lent, let us redouble our efforts to live faithfully as St. Joseph had been faithful, be more charitable and loving to our brethren, particularly those who are in need.

Let us show love to our fellow brethren, and let us turn our backs to our sinful past, and instead embrace a new future blessed by God. Let us all also ask for the intercession of St. Joseph, that he will pray for our sake, for the Church that his foster Son Jesus had established in this world, that God will continue to protect it and bless all of its works. May God bless us all and His Church. Amen.