March 19 is the feast of Saint Joseph, the father of Jesus, husband of Mary and a patron of the Universal Church and of the Diocese of San Jose.
Here some thoughts locally and internationally on this beloved figure.
In a column he wrote for The Valley Catholic in March 1997, Founding Bishop Pierre DuMaine described Saint Joseph: “Saint Joseph is not, of course just a legendary wonder-worker. His silent but powerful presence in the Gospels stimulated centuries of veneration for this ‘just man,’ faithful provider and guardian of our Savior and his Mother. As such, he has become the special patron of fathers, of families, manual laborers, treasurers, and of the Universal Church.
“Wider devotion of Saint Joseph was promoted in the sixteenth century by Saint Teresa of Avila and Saint Ignatius of Loyola. I like to associate these names with the Carmelite daughters of Teresa and the Jesuit sons of Ignatius, because the contemplative Carmelite Monastery in Santa Clara is a powerful source of prayer and witness for our Diocese and the rich Jesuit history in this valley includes their care of Saint Joseph Church in San Jose (1851 to 1992).”
In a general audience on the Solemnity of Saint Joseph, March 19, 2014, Pope Francis remarked: “Saint Joseph’s mission is certainly unique and unrepeatable, as Jesus is absolutely unique. However, in protecting Jesus, in teaching him how to grow in age, wisdom and grace, he is a model for every educator, and in particular for every father. … I ask for you the grace to be ever closer to your children, allow them to grow, but be close, close! They need you, your presence, your closeness, your love. Be, for them, like Saint Joseph: protectors of their growth in age, wisdom and grace. Guardians of their path, and educators: walk alongside them. And with this closeness, you will be true educators.”
Prayer to Saint Joseph, our Diocese’s Patron Saint
Saint Joseph – San Jose, we honor you as our Patron.
We revere you as that “wise and loyal servant”
whom the Lord placed over His household.
With faith you trusted God’s message and acted on it.
With a husband’s love you cherished Mary, our Mother.
With a father’s care you watched over Jesus, our Savior.
With honest labor you provided for your Holy Family.
Pray for us now in this Diocese which bears your name that we may nourish each other in faith, support each other in our temporal needs,
and renew our Church in the pattern of your own Household.
Copyright © 1996, Most Reverend R. Pierre DuMaine, First Bishop of San Jose.