St. Joseph

Saint Joseph was a just man, a tireless worker, the upright guardian of those entrusted to his care. May he always guard, protect and enlighten families. ~ Pope John Paul II

St. Joseph’s Feast Day: March 19, 2012

The husband of Mary and the foster father of Jesus is often said to be a “carpenter.” In fact, he was a tekton, a more general term of his time for someone who works in construction. (It shares the same root as “technology.”) As such, Joseph would have been more of a general contractor, working with iron or stone as well as wood. In fact, some scholars think he might have even worked on major Roman construction projects in Sepphoris, a larger city about three and a half miles from Nazareth, where the Holy Family lived.

The Gospels of Matthew and Luke give us the few details known about his life. He was most likely poor — he offered only two turtle doves at the Temple where Jesus was circumcised. And yet, both Matthew and Luke place Joseph in the line of King David (see Mt 1:1-16 and Lk 3:23-38). Indeed, the angel who first tells Joseph about Jesus greets him as “son of David” (Mt 1:20), a royal title used also for Jesus.

We do know that Joseph was a good man who took his responsibility of caring for Jesus and Mary seriously. He said yes to this awesome responsibility and did not hesitate to move his family to keep them safe. Celebrate St. Joseph on March 19 by asking for his care and protection of your family this day and always.

In his memory:

  • Read the story of the angel’s visit to Joseph in Matthew 1:20-21.
  • Pray a novena for all who are looking for work.
  • Teach your children how to do simple carpentry such as cutting a board or hammering a nail (as is appropriate for their age).


Prayer to St. Joseph

O St. Joseph, whose protection is so great, so strong, so prompt before the throne of God, I place in you all my interests and desires.