St. Joseph and the Birth of Jesus

Today, we offer a few thoughts on St. Joseph’s role in the Nativity of Our Lord Jesus Christ from the writings of Father Reginald Garrigou-Lagrange, O.P.

ST. JOSEPH’S EXCEPTIONAL MISSION

To St. John the Baptist was entrusted the task of announcing the immediate coming of the Messiah. It can be said then that he was the greatest precursor of Jesus in the Old Testament; and it is in this sense that St. Thomas understands our Lord’s pronouncement in St. Matthew’s Gospel:  “Amen I say to you, there hath not risen among them that are born of woman a greater than John the Baptist.”  But our Lord immediately adds: “Yet he that is the lesser in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he.”

The kingdom of heaven is the Church on earth and in heaven, the New Testament surpassing the perfection of the Old although some just men of the Old have been holier than many of the New. And in the Church who is “he that is the lesser”? These mysterious words have received more than one interpretation. They make us think of words spoken later by Jesus: “For he that is the lesser among you all, he is the greater.”

The lesser means the most humble, the servant of all, and therefore, because of the connection and proportion of the virtues, the one who has the greatest charity. And who in the Church is the most humble? He who was neither apostle nor evangelist nor martyr—exteriorly at least—nor pontiff nor priest, nor doctor, but who knew and loved Christ Jesus certainly no less than the apostles, the Evangelists, the martyrs, the popes and doctors of the Church: the humble artisan of Nazareth, the humble Joseph.

The apostles were called to make the Savior known, to preach the gospel that men might be saved. Their mission, like John the Baptist’s, belongs to the order of grace necessary for the salvation of all; but an order still higher than the order of grace exists, one constituted by the very mystery of the Incarnation, the order of the hypostatic or personal union of the humanity of Jesus with the very Word of God. Mary’s unique mission of divine motherhood adjoins this order, and Joseph’s hidden mission also, in a sense, has a like position. . . .

Bossuet expresses all this with lovely clarity in his first panegyric on this great saint when he tells us:

“Among vocations I have noticed two in the Scriptures that seem direct opposites, the apostles’ and Joseph’s. Jesus is revealed to the apostles to be announced throughout the universe; He is revealed to Joseph to be passed over in silence and to be kept hidden. The apostles act as light, to show Jesus Christ to the world. Joseph serves as a veil to cover Him; and under this mysterious veil are hidden for us Mary’s virginity and the Savior’s greatness. . . . He who glorifies the apostles with the honor of preaching glorifies Joseph with the humility of silence.”

Before the manifestation of the first Christmas should come, it had to be prepared for by thirty years of hidden life. For each of us perfection consists in doing what God wills in the life to which He has called us. Joseph’s entirely exceptional vocation seems, in its silence and obscurity, to surpass the calling of the greatest apostles, touching so closely the mystery of the redemptive Incarnation. After Mary, Joseph appears nearer than anyone else to the Author of grace; and if he was, then he received in the silence of Bethlehem, during the sojourn in Egypt, and in Nazareth’s little home, more graces than any other saint will ever receive. His special mission in regard to Mary consisted chiefly in contracting with the Mother of God a real and absolutely holy marriage.

According to the account given in St. Matthew’s Gospel, an angel of the Lord appeared to Joseph in his sleep and told him: “Joseph, son of David, fear not to take unto thee Mary thy wife, for that which is conceived in her is of the Holy Ghost.” Mary was really his wife by a true and entirely heavenly marriage, which was to have a fruitfulness wholly divine. The initial fullness of grace given to the Virgin in view of her divine motherhood in a sense evoked the mystery of the Incarnation.

As Bossuet says: “The virginity of Mary drew Jesus down from heaven. . . . Since her purity made her fruitful, I have no fear to assert that Joseph had his part in this great miracle; for if angelic purity is Mary’s treasure, this treasure lay in the keeping of the just Joseph.”

Joseph, in the simple framework of a village carpenter’s life, had the privilege of sharing in a stainless and reverent union with the most perfect creature that God has ever made. He has drawn nearer the Mother of God than any other saint, more closely allied than anyone else to the Mother of all men, Joseph himself included. Under all her titles as co-redemptrix, universal mediatrix and distributer of all grace, Joseph loved Mary with the purest and most devoted love, a love that can rightly be called theological, for he loved the Virgin in God and for God, because of all the glory that she gave to God.

The beauty of the whole universe bears no comparison to the sublime union of these two souls, a union created by the Most High, giving delight to the angels and joy to God Himself. As to Joseph’s exceptional mission in regard to our Lord, we know that in all truth the Word of God made flesh was confided to him rather than to any other of the just men of all generations. The holy old Simeon took the child Jesus into his arms for a few moments and saw in Him the salvation of the people, “lumen ad revelationem gentium,” but Joseph looked after Him night and day during His whole infancy, often holding in his arms the Child in whom he beheld his Creator and Savior. From Him he received grace upon grace during the long years when he lived with Him in closest daily intimacy, watching Him grow, contributing to His human education, receiving His obedience.

(Joseph) is commonly called the “foster father of the Savior,” but he was in a sense more than that for, as St. Thomas points out, by marriage a man becomes a child’s “foster father” or “adopted father” only accidentally; while there was nothing at all accidental in Joseph being given charge of Jesus. He had been created and put into the world for just that end. It was his predestination, and in view of his wholly divine mission Providence had accorded to him all the graces that he had received from his infancy, graces of deep piety, of virginity, of prudence, and of perfect fidelity.

In the eternal designs of God, Joseph’s union with Mary existed simply for the Savior’s protection and education, and Joseph received from God a father’s heart to care for the Child Jesus. This was his principal mission; in view of it he received sanctity proportionate, in a sense, to his rank, to the mystery of the Incarnation, which dominates, in its infinite reaches, the whole order of grace.

Sinibaldi’s recent work, La Grandezza di San Giuseppi, brings out St. Joseph’s eternal predestination as the Blessed Virgin Mary’s spouse, explaining with St. Thomas the threefold fitness of such a predestination. The Angelic Doctor established the same point himself; asking whether it was fitting that Christ should be born of a virgin who had contracted a real marriage, he gave as his answer that it was fitting for the sake of Christ Himself, His Mother, and us. It was highly fitting for our Lord Himself because, until the time should come for the mystery of His birth to be manifested, He would not then be considered an illegitimate son and would have protection during His childhood. For the Blessed Virgin it was no less fitting because it kept her from being judged a guilty adulteress and stoned as such by the Jews, as St. Jerome observed; it also served to protect her in the difficulties and persecution that began with the Savior’s birth.

It was, St. Thomas adds, very expedient for us, too, because we thus learn through testimony above suspicion, Joseph’s, about Christ’s virginal conception; in the human order of things, his testimony also lends support to Mary’s. Lastly, it was supremely fitting that we should find in Mary at once the perfect model of virgins, of wives, and of Christian mothers. Herein lies the explanation of why, according to some authors, the eternal decree of the Incarnation, so far as it must be realized hic et nunc, in such and such determined circumstances, included not only Jesus and Mary but Joseph as well.

From all eternity indeed it was decided that the Word of God made flesh should be born miraculously of Mary ever virgin united to the just Joseph in bonds of true marriage. St. Luke thus expresses the carrying out of this providential decree: “And in the sixth month, the angel Gabriel was sent from God into a city of Galilee, called Nazareth, to a virgin espoused to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David; and the virgin’s name was Mary.” . . .

In a discourse that was given in the Consistory Chamber on the feast of St. Joseph, March 19, 1928, His Holiness Pope Pius XI compared St. Joseph’s vocation with St. John the Baptist’s and St. Peter’s. There is significance, His Holiness said, in the fact that God raises up certain magnificent and lustrous figures so near to one another as to be almost contemporaries: St. John the Baptist, who came out of the desert with a voice now thundering like a roaring lion and now speaking with the accents of the friend of the bridegroom rejoicing at the bridegroom’s glory, and at the last offering up before the world the glory of his own martyrdom; Peter, who heard the divine Master speak to him divine words that bore witness about him before all men of all ages: “Thou art Peter; and upon this rock I will build My Church.” “Going therefore, teach ye all nations.”

His was a magnificent and divinely radiant mission. Between these two, St. Joseph’s appears, in recollection and in silence, almost unperceived and unknown, coming to light only centuries later when its silence was to be broken by a resounding hymn of glory.  There where the mystery lies deepest, the surrounding night grows darkest, the silence grows greatest, the highest mission is to be found, accompanied and reechoed by a happy necessity in a brilliant retinue of virtues and merits. It is a unique and very high mission to guard the Son of God, the King of the world, to watch over the virginity and sanctity of Mary, to have a hidden place and share in this great mystery, shielded from the eyes of the centuries while cooperating in the Incarnation and Redemption.

All Joseph’s sanctity lies precisely in the completely faithful accomplishment of this great and humble mission, so high and so hidden, so splendid and so surrounded with shadows. [End Quote]

So, in the shadows of these dark times, we see a light growing brighter, as the mission of St. Joseph becomes clearer.

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The preceding essay is from  Father Reginald Garrigou-Lagrange’s essay, “St. Joseph, model of the hidden life and first among the saints”.

June 22, 2017, What Now?

We offer today’s updated repost in response to questions posed by concerned readers. It is my attempt to explain that although Pope Francis gives every appearance of being the Apostate Pope of the Third Secret, and thus an indicator of how rapidly we are advancing towards the culmination of the material and spiritual chastisements, we must strengthen our trust in the Immaculate Heart of Mary, to whom the victory has been given.  My update follows at the end of the post.

When asked if it was possible for the Cardinals to elect a heretical Pope, Father Malachi Martin responded,

Yes, we could have an apostate as Pope. In that case, we would be into something terrible. We would be into something which is nightmarish. It would test the faith of the greatest saint. … Your faith would be battered to pieces. If that happens, they (The Kingdom of Darkness) would have the prize and everything would have to go underground. We are, indeed, on our way to becoming, as Paul VI described in his misery, an infinitesimally small part of humanity. (Fr. Malachi Martin)

In another quote,  Fr. Martin expanded on his prophecy about this pope:

Roman Catholics will then have the spectacle of a pope validly elected who cuts the entire visible body of the Church loose from the traditional unity and the papacy-oriented apostolic structure that the Church has hitherto always believed and taught was divinely established. The shudder that will shake the Roman Catholic body in that day will be the shudder of its death agony. … Many will accept the new regime. Many will resist. All will be fragmented. There will be no one on earth to hold the fractionating members of the visible Roman Catholic body together as a living compact organization.”

Admittedly, there are creditable doubts about the validity of Pope  Francis’s papacy, nevertheless, he is the current occupant. And he continues in his stated mission to make a mess of the Church. This past Thursday, this Pope of Affliction continued to prove that he is, in tragic fact, the Apostate Pope foretold by Fr. Martin those many years ago. At a recent address in St. John Lateran, the Bishop of Rome once again struck at the roots of the Church’s doctrine.

The Pope of Irreversible Change
The Pope of Irreversible Change

When asked about the “crisis in marriage”, Bergoglio responded with an anecdote about a young man who wanted to become a priest “but only for 10 years”, stating that, “it’s the culture of the provisional”. He then went on, “It’s provisional, and because of this the great majority of our sacramental marriages are null. Because they say “yes, for the rest of my life!” but they don’t know what they are saying.” He then added, “I’ve seen a lot of fidelity in these cohabitations, and I am sure that this is a real marriage, they have the grace of a real marriage because of their fidelity,…”

Note how he skillfully worked in doubts about the validity of Holy Orders while also undercutting the validity of Sacramental marriage! Clever, no? Although even Fox news has noticed that the Pope is doing incalculable harm to the Church and should be made to resign, the great number of catholics prefer to deny the obvious. I heard them described once as “those who gather butterflies on Mount Calvary”. Right at the scene of the crucifixion of the Bride of Christ, they are following illusions, intently ignoring the Passion of the Church. In an earlier post, we wrote of this,

“Since the vast majority of Catholics do not respond to the Chastisement of the faith, nor now, even the open and outright apostasy of the faith in this post-synodal Church of Mercy®, the “New Church” instituted by Pope Francis, God will most likely allow the final stages of the Chastisement. This will be the Chastisement of the material world, with immense suffering and in which the few survivors will envy the dead. But it will take most men by surprise because, since they refuse to follow the command of Our Lady for penance and prayer, their intellects and spirits are darkened. …”

This is the time foretold in the Apocalypse, as Sister Lucia warned us and many approved prophecies before her. The “great dragon, that old serpent, who is called the devil and Satan” will be cast out of the Church. As Malachi Martin warned us, this malignant force which currently controls the Vatican cannot be dislodged by human means. It is supernatural and draws its immense strength from the Lord of this World. In nearly 100 years, faithless and lukewarm catholics have failed to obey the warnings of our Lord Jesus Christ and His Mother, thus giving free rein to the evil entrenched in the Vatican.

What now? Two thoughts on this from two holy women:

From Blessed Elizabeth Canori Mora:

Behold, my daughter, such great ungodliness.” Blessed Elizabeth then saw “apostates brazenly trying to rip her most holy Son from her arms. Confronted with such an outrage, the Mother of God ceased to ask mercy for the world, and instead requested justice from the Eternal Father. Clothed in His inexorable Justice and full of indignation, He turned to the world. At that moment all nature went into convulsions, the world lost its normal order and was filled with the most terrible calamity imaginable. This will be something so deplorable and atrocious that it will reduce the world to the ultimate depths of desolation.”

From St. Hildegard von Bingen:

Before the Comet comes, many nations, the good excepted, will be scoured with want and famine. The great nation (*) in the ocean that is inhabited by people of different tribes and descent by an earthquake, storm and tidal waves will be devastated. It will be divided, and in great part submerged. That nation will also have many misfortunes at sea, and lose its colonies in the east through a Tiger and a Lion.

The Comet by its tremendous pressure, will force much out of the ocean and flood many countries, causing much want and many plagues. [After the] great Comet, the great nation (*) will be devastated by earthquakes, storms, and great waves of water, causing much want and plagues. The ocean will also flood many other countries, so that all coastal cities will live in fear, with many destroyed. All sea coast cities will be fearful and many of them will be destroyed by tidal waves, and most living creatures will be killed and even those who escape will die from a horrible disease. For in none of these cities does a person live according to the laws of God. “Peace will return to Europe when the white flower again takes possession of the throne of France.” [St. Hildegard von Bingen]

*Many believe this refers to USA.

Although there is no chance any longer of stopping or even mitigating the culmination of the Chastisement, we must return vigorously to the true message of Fatima. Right now, we must resolve to pray at a minimum, one Rosary a day for the specific intention of reparation for the blasphemies against the Immaculate Heart of Mary and for the Consecration of Russia. Our Lord told us that the Pope would do it, “but it will be late”. He also cautioned us to pray very much for the Pope. Once the current occupant is cleansed from the See of Peter, we may hope for the promised Holy Pope who will consecrate Russia and restore the Faith. but there will be much bloodshed and violence in the interim.

Jesus asked that we honor the Image of His Sacred Heart!

As a footnote, I have lost many readers through my opposition to the “Divine Mercy” devotion. For those who remain, I urge you to use Our Lady’s Rosary only for that use which she asked for, and to always keep in mind that Our Lord Jesus Christ requested that the image of His Sacred Heart be the object of devotion.

Therefore, to waste our time with novel devotions to a heartless image is a great offense to Him. Our Lady of Fatima warned us to stop offending Him. She repeated this at Akita, after the official Church attempted to silence her message at Fatima. She emphasized her warning by stating that fire would fall from the sky and the survivors would envy the dead.

Readers, I do not see how any of this could possibly be made any more clear. Catholics have become willfully blind and will follow one another to destruction. We must pray the Rosary, we must fast, do penance and beseech heaven right now for mercy. We are at Golgotha and the Church is in Her Passion. This is not the time to go wandering around in search of other “revelations”, other devotions which contradict the true devotions to the Sacred Heart of Jesus and the Immaculate Heart of Mary.

NOTE  22 June, 2017: A year has passed and we are ever more advanced on this perilous decline, but we must not lose heart because we belong to the very Mother of God,  who assures us,  “I will never forsake you. My Immaculate Heart will be your refuge and the way that will lead you to God.”

And so we trust in her and through her, in the infinite mercy of Our Lord Jesus Christ, Who has assured us that despite the lateness of the hour, it is never too late to implore His mercy with a humble and contrite heart. 

I have not written enough about how we are to achieve this “humble and contrite heart” and have been rightfully called to account by several readers.  I hope to remedy this soon, but in the meantime, offer you briefly:

Our Lady of the Rosary has given us the remedy: It is her rosary! But then you say, “I cannot keep my focus, I am plagued with terrible distractions, it is such a battle!”  Yes! It is as battle and each time we return to our prayers, spurning the distractions, we bring great blessings for poor sinners. But, to help you focus,  I have offered remedies:  such as minimizing the internet, eliminating television and other blather, fasting, and arising at night or an hour earlier each day for quiet, uninterrupted time with Our Lady and her Rosary.  Still , they are not sufficient for some readers, it is claimed.  I must admit, I have difficulty believing that those methods, if assiduously followed have proven unfruitful; but if so, please consider that St. Joseph has never at any time failed to help anyone who turned to him with trust and asked that he assist them to pray the Rosary attentively.

Please simply ask St. Joseph to help you pray your Rosary. If you start your day, as early as possible – you must get up earlier than the devil, as Sister used to tell us when we were children! – so get up early, ask St. Joseph to help you prepare your heart and mind, and then pray your first Rosary of the day, the Joyful Mysteries are his especial forte! Trust in him! You will not be disappointed. That is why he appeared at Fatima and he will bring you peace and many blessings!

If you still have questions, of course you may email me; however, be aware that at present, I am unable to respond to individual emails due to constraints of time and energy. I appreciate emails and will endeavor to respond in posts or on the “About” page when indicated.

For information on the Message of Fatima and the requisite devotions, please see our post: The Message of Fatima. Thank you.

Dear readers, thank you for reading. May God be with you all and Mary keep you close to her Immaculate Heart!

Please, pray the Rosary and confound the devil!

†  Immaculate Heart of Mary, Queen of our hearts, Mother of the Church, do thou offer to the Eternal Father the Precious Blood of Our Lord Jesus Christ, for the conversion of poor sinners, especially our Pontiff.

  Most Sacred Heart of Jesus, Thy Kingdom come, Viva Cristo Rey!

†  St. Joseph, guardian of the Holy Family, protect our families, protect our priests!

†  St. Michael the Archangel, defend us in battle.

~ by evensong for love of the Immaculate Heart of Mary and the Sacred Heart of Jesus Christ, King.
Vouchsafe that I may praise thee, O Sacred Virgin! Give me strength against thine enemies!

© All Content Copyright 2013-2017 ReturntoFatima.org. All Rights Reserved.

St. Joseph, Too

“… Christ was promised to Abraham as man, to David as his successor in his kingdom, but to Joseph under the name of Saviour;  in order that we may be persuaded that, although Joseph had no share in the formation of the Body of Jesus neither did he place the crown upon His head, he nevertheless contributed to making Him the Saviour of all men, journeying and labouring and toiling along with Him, and supporting Him by the fruit of his toils for so many years. And thus (he says) he was the last of the Patriarchs to whom the Messias was promised, but in a more excellent manner than all.” (The Life and Glories of St. Joseph, Edward Healy Thompson, Aeterna Press, Kindle)

Thou salt call His name Jesus

Since St. Joseph is silent in the Scriptures, regrettably many erroneous impressions have been given of him. He was not, as some assert, a decrepit old man when he and the Blessed Virgin were betrothed, but was fair-haired and in his prime, about 33 years old. He had no other children, for he was a virgin, having made his vow to that effect at the age of 12. Joseph and Mary both knew of each others’ vow of chastity. For to marry under Hebrew Law without advising each other of that vow would have  been deceitful. And so, when Matthew 1, 18 tells us, “She was found with child, of the Holy Ghost”, it was Joseph himself who realized this, for he and the Blessed Virgin were aware of the sacred vows each had made, to offer their virginity to God as a sacred oblation. Most of the following is from the book cited above, with my comments.

St. Joseph did not ever, for one instant, doubt Our Lady, but simply sought God’s will. In his profound humility, he was abashed to think that the Lord God would choose him for the spouse and consort of the Mother of the Savior. When the Blessed Virgin saw that Joseph was perplexed, she prayed to God to enlighten him; a prayer which was heard by God most promptly. Thompson tells us that according to Eastern legend, not a night passed before Joseph was delivered from his uncertainty. As scripture tells us,

“But while he thought on these things, behold the Angel of the Lord appeared to him in his sleep, saying, ‘Joseph, son of David, fear not to take unto thee Mary thy wife, for that which is conceived in her is of the Holy Ghost. And she shall bring forth a son; and thou shalt call His name Jesus: for He shall save His people from their sins”.

There is much insight available on this passage, but many writers do not make use of it and prefer instead to weave misleading fables about how Joseph was “afraid”, doubted God, doubted Mary and so on. Note that the angel called Joseph by his name, and added the honorific, “Son of David”. Thus showing him deference which would not have been indicated were he to have doubted God or the Blessed Virgin. We have already seen how Zachary was reproved for his doubts! Although many suppose that the angel’s words were an instruction to Joseph to wed the Virgin, the angel was actually telling him to remain with her.

According to Pope Benedict XIV, quoted by Edward Healy Thompson:

“The word of the angel by which he bade him not to fear to take unto him Mary for his wife is a Hebrew mode of expression, which does not signify the commencement of an act, but the continuation of an act already begun. The meaning of his mandate is this: ‘Retain and keep the wife you have taken, and do not forsake her’; and such is the interpretation of those who are adepts in the Hebrew idiom.”

The angel does not tell Joseph to discard his suspicions, for he has none. But the angel does tell Joseph, “thou shalt call His name Jesus: for He shall save His people from their sins”. Now, note the wording here: the angel does not say, “His name shall be Jesus”, but says, “Thou shalt call His name Jesus”, which was also said to Mary, thus acknowledging Joseph’s rights and dignity as the foster father of Our Lord.

With this knowledge, St. Joseph’s soul was flooded with a superabundance of grace, for only by a special favor of God was he able to approach this true “Ark of the Covenant”, this most sacred “Temple of the Trinity”. In her Revelations, St. Bridget tells us that when Joseph beheld her with Child by the Holy Ghost, he feared exceedingly, suspecting no evil of her, but, remembering the words of the prophet which foretold how the Son of God would be born of a virgin, reputed himself unworthy to serve such a mother, until the angel in sleep bade him not to fear, but to minister to her with charity. And our Lady added: “From that moment Joseph never ceased to serve me as his sovereign and I humbled myself to the lowest offices to show him my submission.” (Thompson, op. cit.)

Continue reading “St. Joseph, Too”

The Feast Day of St. Joseph, 2017

Today we honor St. Joseph, the spouse of the Blessed Virgin Mary and the foster father of Our Lord Jesus Christ. Now more than ever, when traditional Catholic families are under attack even from Pope Francis and the leaders of the Church who support him, we turn to St. Joseph, strong defender of the family.

The Church liturgically honors St. Joseph tomorrow, since his feast falls on a Sunday, and so we post today, and will have another post honoring great St. Joseph tomorrow, as well.

St. Teresa of Avila, the great Carmelite reformer, mystic and doctor of the Church was especially devoted to St. Joseph. From her Autobiography we read of St. Joseph, “I know by long experience what blessings he can obtain for us from God. I have never known anyone who was truly devoted to him by particular services who did not advance greatly in virtue: for he helps in a special way those souls who commend themselves to him.”

At the last apparition of Fatima, on October 13, 1917, St. Joseph appeared holding the Child Jesus, who blessed the crowds. This was an emphatic indication of the importance of St. Joseph in these turbulent times.

St. Joseph, defender of the faith, defender of families, pray for us!

Venerable Maria de Agreda, in “The Mystical City of God”, recounts the special privileges which make St. Joseph a most powerful intercessor on behalf of his children.

  • Attaining purity and overcoming sensuality.
  • Escaping sin and returning to the faith.
  • Increasing love and devotion to his spouse, the Most Blessed Virgin Mary.
  • Securing the grace of a happy death and defending the soul against the devil’s wiles at that crucial time.
  • St. Joseph is the terror of demons and they flee at his name.
  • St. Joseph is a great intercessor for all our needs, especially helpful for our families and health.

Venerable Maria de Agreda quoted Our Lady’s words to her, “That which my spouse asks of the Lord in heaven is granted upon the earth and on his intercession depend many and extraordinary favors for men if they do not make themselves unworthy of receiving them.” Indeed, trusting in St. Joseph as the foster father of our family has brought us closer to living our consecrations to the Sacred Heart of Jesus and the Immaculate Heart of Mary. In speaking of St. Joseph, it is difficult to adequately express his tender love for us, his willingness to protect us, even from ourselves and obtain for us the graces we need to live our consecrations.

Continue reading “The Feast Day of St. Joseph, 2017”

Consecration to St. Joseph

We offer the following in response to a reader’s request. Consider that taking a bit of time to seek the strength and protection of St. Joseph, is far from a burden; Our Lady told Sister Lucia that St. Joseph will give us peace. Let’s seek his peace as we prepare for the birth of Our Lord this holy season!

In times of trial, go to St. Joseph!

https://www.returntofatima.org
Jesus, Mary and Joseph, Holy Family, bless our family, bless our Church!

Dear readers, we know that the Sacred Hearts of our Lord Jesus Christ and His most pure and Immaculate Mother are inseparable. And we know that this self-same Mother is also the most pure and perfect Spouse of the Holy Ghost, and the most beloved and treasured child of the Eternal Father. We know as well that this loving Father entrusted these two most beloved beings, Jesus and Mary, to St. Joseph to guard and protect them from the evil and hostile powers of the Lord of the World and his minions. And now, in these dark and calamitous times when our families and our very faith are under attack from those who should protect and nurture it, we turn again to St. Joseph, to the Holy Family, inseparably united to the Most Holy Trinity, to keep us safe in the faith of all times.

Readers, do not be surprised if soon the few small certainties and comforts of the faith are soon taken from us, for as Cardinal Manning said,

These are times of sifting. Our Divine Lord is standing in the Church: “His fan is in His hand, and He will thoroughly cleanse His (own) and He will gather the grain into His barn, and will burn up the chaff with unquenchable fire.” It is a time of trial, when ‘some of the learned shall fall’, and those only shall be saved who are steadfast to the end. … Saint Alphonsus says: ‘Hence St. Bonaventure says that in the Mass God manifests to us all the love that He has borne us, and includes in it, as in a compendium, all His benefits. On this account the Devil has always endeavored to abolish the Mass throughout the world by means of heretics, making them the precursors of Antichrist who, before all things, will endeavor to abolish, and in fact will, in punishment for the sins of men, succeed in abolishing the Holy Sacrifice of the Altar, according to the prediction of Daniel: ‘And strength was given him against the continual sacrifice because of sins.’

We must understand, and help others to understand, the importance of using the precious little time we have left to bond ourselves as securely as possible to the Sacred Heart of Jesus and the Immaculate Heart of Mary. To this end, I have posted often on Total Consecration to the Sacred Heart of Jesus through the Immaculate Heart of Mary.

And now, I hope that you will avail yourselves of an additional help to accomplish this, which is Consecration to St. Joseph, the faithful Guardian of Jesus and Mary, appointed by our loving Father Himself. At Fatima in 1917, Our Lady promised the little shepherds that in October, St. Joseph and the Child Jesus would come to bless us with peace. We need this peace! And while we struggle to live our Consecrations to Jesus through Mary, St. Joseph goes before us to lead us safely to our goal, so that we may be truly one holy family, now and always, in the glory of God, the Father, Son and Holy Ghost.

Continue reading “Consecration to St. Joseph”

St. Joseph, Remedy for Error

“We saw, beside the sun, Saint Joseph with the Child Jesus and Our Lady clothed in white with a blue mantle. Saint Joseph and the Child Jesus seemed to bless the world with gestures which they made with their hands in the form of a cross.” (Sister Lucia of Fatima)

St. Joseph, defender of the faith, defender of families, pray for us!
St. Joseph, defender of the faith, defender of families, pray for us!

This little noted event tells us so much! Even as the miracle of the sun is occurring, St. Joseph appears, holding the Child Jesus and both bless the world. This reminds us that God, Father, Son and Holy Ghost, entrusted the Child Jesus to St. Joseph. Indeed, God’s wisdom entrusted the Holy Family to the quiet man, and now, at Fatima, he is revealed to us, to bless us in this time prefigured by the miracle of the sun.

At the miracle of the sun, the earth stood firm while the sun moved erratically. How can this be? And yet it happened. How can the Church, established by Christ become so erratic as it is today, under Pope Francis? How do we reconcile that the gates of hell will not prevail and the Holy Ghost will always guide her, with what we now see? St. Joseph solved a similar conundrum and he stands ready to help us now.

Matthew 1, 18-25 tells of Joseph’s dilemma and its resolution. His example of humility and steadfastness is precisely the example for us today. Faithful Catholics are torn today between the temptation to abandon the church, or to go along with the errors of the Bergoglio/Kasper agenda.

What did Joseph do when faced with an unsolvable dilemma? He turned to God in prayer and stayed with it until God gave him light. He didn’t become his own God, or in today’s terms, his own pope. Neither did he accept the unthinkable option that somehow Mary had broken her vow, but that false mercy was required on his part to simply accept unfaithfulness. That would be the spiritual sloth of today’s catholics, who simply go along to get along, and welcome unrepentant vice into the church. “Who am I to judge?”

If the Lord God entrusted the Ark of the Covenant to the keeping of St. Joseph, can we not also turn in confidence to him, secure in the knowledge that he will teach us the humility and patience to stand firm in the faith until these erratic and uncertain times are over and the Blessed Virgin clears the smoke of Satan from the Church?

In the Bible, we see that in obedience to God, St. Joseph took the child Jesus and the Blessed Virgin to Egypt in order to save them from murderous Herod. Now, Egypt was a country similar in many ways to our modern post-Christian societies, very much in the control of the Lord of the World. And yet St. Joseph kept them safe. And now he stands ready to help faithful priests guard their flocks. He helps Catholic fathers protect their families.

In 2008, Cardinal Caffara spoke of a correspondence he had with Sister Lucia of Fatima. In her letter she said that, “the final battle between the Lord and the reign of Satan will be about marriage and the family.” “Don’t be afraid”, she added, because “anyone who works for the sanctity of marriage and the family will always be fought and opposed in every way, because this is the decisive issue.” And then she concluded: “however, Our Lady has already crushed its head.”

Certainly, the Fatima vision of St. Joseph and the Child Jesus blessing us, in conjunction with Sister Lucia’s remarks to Cardinal Caffara, should give us consolation today. There is another bit of information on this subject. Solange Hertz, in her book, The Sixth Trumpet, tells us that Sister Lucia, when asked about the Third Secret confirmed that it is about Apocalypse Chapter 12. Mrs. Hertz posits that Apocalypse 12:14 may apply to us in these times.

“And there were given to the woman two wings of a great eagle, that she might fly into the desert unto her place, where she is nourished for a time and times, and half a time, from the face of the serpent.”

In the mystical language of St. John in the Apocalypse, ‘the woman’ refers to the Church, but also to the Blessed Virgin Mary. Mary is inseparably bound to the Church and St. Joseph is the Guardian of both. In Hertz’ view, the Holy Family’s sojourn in Egypt prefigures this passage, and indicates that St. Joseph is given to us in these dire times to strengthen and defend us, and to bring us safely home again.

H J M White has offered some perspective regarding the “desert option”:

“For now, I will offer the words of St. Basil on what people were doing to keep the Faith during the worst days of the Arian crisis:

“Religious people keep silence, but every blaspheming tongue is let loose.
Sacred things are profaned; those of the laity who are sound in the Faith avoid the places of worship as schools of impiety, and raise their hands in solitude, with groans and tears to the Lord in Heaven.”

Four years after, he writes: “Matters have come to this pass: the people have left their houses of prayer, and assembled in the deserts, – a pitiable sight; women and children, old men, and men otherwise infirm, wretchedly faring in the open air, amid most profuse rains and snowstorms and winds and frosts of winter; and again in summer under a scorching sun. To this they submit, because they will have no part of the wicked Arian leaven.”

Again: “Only one offense is now vigorously punished an accurate observance of our fathers’ traditions. For this cause the pious are driven from their countries and transported into deserts.”

Do you remember that saying of Pope Francis after his “World Youth Day”? It was “¡Hagan lío!”  The sycophant press as translates it as, “Make a mess!”, but it is more colloquially understood as, “Raise hell!”

Motto of the Bishop of Rome: ¡Hagan lío! That is, "Raise Hell!"
Motto of the Bishop of Rome: ¡Hagan lío!
That is, “Raise Hell!”

The Peronist Pontiff has certainly succeeded in “raising hell” in the Church since he took office and now reigns over a church remade totally in his own image. We really need to keep the above two images in mind. The Bishop of Rome commands us to obey him, the “Supreme Pastor” in the new Church of Mercy, a church where no repentance is needed, where we can “make a mess” and wallow in it, I guess.

And yet at Fatima, Our Lady of the Rosary offers us St. Joseph and our Lord Jesus Christ, calling us to the unchanging faith, the eternal truth. No mess, no raising hell, but instead, raising our hearts to God.

As we survey the wreckage left in the wake of the synod, we know that the Immaculate Virgin Mary has already crushed satan’s head, and in the end, her Immaculate Heart will triumph. Our job is to stand firm in the faith, and St. Joseph is our sure unfailing defender.

  St. Joseph defender of the family, defender of the faith, we entrust our families and our faith to thee!

†  Immaculate Heart of Mary, intercede for us!

  Most Sacred Heart of Jesus, Thy Kingdom come!

~ by evensong for love of the Immaculate Heart of Mary

Vouchsafe that I may praise thee, O Sacred Virgin, give me strength against thine enemies!

Fatima, St. Joseph and the Family

“We saw, beside the sun, Saint Joseph with the Child Jesus and Our Lady clothed in white with a blue mantle. Saint Joseph and the Child Jesus seemed to bless the world with gestures which they made with their hands in the form of a cross.”
(Sister Lucia of Fatima)

St. Joseph, defender of the faith, defender of families, pray for us!
St. Joseph, defender of the faith, defender of families, pray for us!

This little noted event tells us so much! Even as the miracle of the sun is occurring, St. Joseph appears, holding the Child Jesus and both bless the world. This reminds us that God, Father, Son and Holy Ghost, entrusted the Child Jesus to St. Joseph. Indeed, God’s wisdom entrusted the Holy Family to the quiet man, and now, at Fatima, he is revealed to us, to bless us in this time prefigured by the miracle of the sun.

At the miracle of the sun, the earth stood firm while the sun moved erratically. How can this be? And yet it happened. How can the Church, established by Christ become so erratic as it is today, under Pope Francis? How do we reconcile that the gates of hell will not prevail and the Holy Ghost will always guide her, with what we now see? St. Joseph solved a similar conundrum and he stands ready to help us now.

Matthew 1, 18-25 tells of Joseph’s dilemma and its resolution. His example of humility and steadfastness is precisely the example for us today. Faithful Catholics are torn today between the temptation to abandon the church, or to go along with the errors of the Bergoglio/Kasper agenda.

What did Joseph do when faced with an unsolvable dilemma? He turned to God in prayer and stayed with it until God gave him light. He didn’t become his own God, or in today’s terms, his own pope. Neither did he accept the unthinkable option that somehow Mary had broken her vow, but that false mercy was required on his part to simply accept unfaithfulness. That would be the spiritual sloth of today’s catholics, who simply go along to get along, and welcome unrepentant vice into the church. “Who am I to judge?”

If the Lord God entrusted the Ark of the Covenant to the keeping of St. Joseph, can we not also turn in confidence to him, secure in the knowledge that he will teach us the humility and patience to stand firm in the faith until these erratic and uncertain times are over and the Blessed Virgin clears the smoke of Satan from the Church?

In the Bible, we see that in obedience to God, St. Joseph took the child Jesus and the Blessed Virgin to Egypt in order to save them from murderous Herod. Now, Egypt was a country similar in many ways to our modern post-Christian societies, very much in the control of the Lord of the World. And yet St. Joseph kept them safe. And now he stands ready to help faithful priests guard their flocks. He helps Catholic fathers protect their families.

In 2008, Cardinal Caffara related a correspondence he had with Sister Lucia of Fatima. In her letter she said that, “the final battle between the Lord and the reign of Satan will be about marriage and the family.” “Don’t be afraid”, she added, because “anyone who works for the sanctity of marriage and the family will always be fought and opposed in every way, because this is the decisive issue.” And then she concluded:  “however, Our Lady has already crushed its head.”

Certainly, the Fatima vision of St. Joseph and the Child Jesus blessing us, in conjunction with Sister Lucia’s remarks to Cardinal Caffara, should give us consolation today. There is another bit of information on this subject. Solange Hertz, in her book, The Sixth Trumpet, tells us that Sister Lucia, when asked about the Third Secret confirmed that it is about Apocalypse Chapter 12. Mrs. Hertz posits that Apocalypse 12:14 may apply to us in these times.

“And there were given to the woman two wings of a great eagle, that she might fly into the desert unto her place, where she is nourished for a time and times, and half a time, from the face of the serpent.” In the mystical language of St. John in the Apocalypse, “the woman” refers to the Church, but also to the Blessed Virgin Mary.  Mary is inseparably bound to the Church and St. Joseph is the Guardian of both. In Hertz’ view, the Holy Family’s sojourn in Egypt prefigures this passage, and indicates that St. Joseph is given to us in these dire times to strengthen and defend us, and to bring us safely home again.

Whatever the Bergoglio/Kasper agenda serves up at October’s Synod, we know that the Immaculate Virgin Mary has already crushed satan’s head, and in the end, her Immaculate Heart will triumph. Our job is to stand firm in the faith, and St. Joseph is our sure unfailing defender.

St. Joseph defender of the family, defender of the faith, we entrust our families and our faith to thee!

Immaculate Heart of Mary, intercede for us!

 

St. Joseph, Protect Our Families!

Today is the feast day of St. Joseph, the spouse of the Blessed Virgin Mary and the foster father of Our Lord Jesus Christ. Now, when traditional Catholic families are under attack not only from the anti-christian governments and anti-life cultures, but also from the papacy and church leaders, we need to call on St. Joseph, strong defender of the family.

St. Teresa of Avila, the great Carmelite reformer, mystic and doctor of the Church was especially devoted to St. Joseph. From her Autobiography we read of St. Joseph, “I know by long experience what blessings he can obtain for us from God. I have never known anyone who was truly devoted to him by particular services who did not advance greatly in virtue: for he helps in a special way those souls who commend themselves to him.”

At the last apparition of Fatima, on October 13, 1917, St. Joseph appeared holding the Child Jesus, who blessed the crowds. This was an emphatic indication of the importance of St. Joseph in these turbulent times.

Venerable Maria de Agreda, in “The Mystical City of God”, recounts the special privileges which make St. Joseph a most powerful intercessor on behalf of his children.

  • Attaining purity and overcoming sensuality.
  • Escaping sin and returning to the faith.
  • Increasing love and devotion to his spouse, the Most Blessed Virgin Mary.
  • Securing the grace of a happy death and defending the soul against the devil’s wiles at that crucial time.
  • St. Joseph is the terror of demons and they flee at his name.
  • St. Joseph is a great intercessor for all our needs, especially helpful for our families and health.

Venerable Maria de Agreda quoted Our Lady’s words to her, “That which my spouse asks of the Lord in heaven is granted upon the earth and on his intercession depend many and extraordinary favors for men if they do not make themselves unworthy of receiving them.” Indeed, trusting in St. Joseph as the foster father of our family has brought us closer to living our consecrations to the Sacred Heart of Jesus and the Immaculate Heart of Mary. In speaking of St. Joseph, it is difficult to adequately express his tender love for us, his willingness to protect us, even from ourselves and obtain for us the graces we need to live our consecrations.

The following is an especially appropriate prayer to St. Joseph composed by Pope Leo XIII, called Ad te Beate Joseph. It seems especially appropriate in this time of crisis of the faith in the Church and in our families, who seem to be betrayed by the very Church which should defend and nourish them. It is said before Mass by those attending Chapels of the Society of St. Pius X and Bishop Fellay is especially devoted to St. Joseph.

Ad Te Beate Joseph

To thee, O blessed Joseph, do we have recourse in our tribulation, and having implored the help of thy thrice holy Spouse, we confidently invoke thy patronage also. By that charity wherewith thou wast united to the Immaculate Virgin Mother of God, and by that fatherly affection with which thou didst embrace the Child Jesus, we beseech thee and we humbly pray, that thou wouldst look graciously upon the inheritance which Jesus Christ hath purchased by His Blood, and assist us in our needs by thy power and strength.

Most watchful Guardian of the Holy Family, protect the chosen people of Jesus Christ; keep far from us, most loving father, all blight of error and corruption: mercifully assist us from heaven, most mighty defender, in this our conflict with the powers of darkness; and, even as of old thou didst rescue the Child Jesus from the supreme peril of His life, so now defend Gods Holy Church from the snares of the enemy and from all adversity; keep us one and all under thy continual protection, that we may be supported by thine example and thine assistance, may be enabled to lead a holy life, die a happy death and come at last to the possession of everlasting blessedness in heaven. Amen.
— A partial indulgence is attached to this prayer

Another favorite prayer of mine is this Consecration to St. Joseph

Beloved St. Joseph, adopt me as thy child, take care of my salvation, watch over me day and night, preserve me from all occasion of sin, obtain for me purity of body and soul! Through thy intercession with Jesus grant me a spirit of sacrifice, of humility, self-denial, a burning love for Jesus in the Most Blessed Sacrament, and a sweet, tender love for Mary, my Mother. St. Joseph, be with me living, be with me dying and obtain for me a favorable judgement from Jesus, my merciful Savior. Amen

St. Joseph has brought me through so many perils to my faith and continues to protect even those of my children who are lapsed from the faith. He is a most compassionate and loving protector to all who turn to him.

St. Joseph, foster father to our Lord, be foster father to our family!

St. Joseph, terror of demons, cast out evil from our homes, from our families, from the Church!

St. Joseph intercede for us now and at the hour of our death!

~ evensong ~

St. Joseph, Patron of Families

Today is the feast day of St. Joseph, the husband of the Blessed Virgin Mary and the foster father of Our Lord Jesus Christ. Devotion to St. Joseph has grown over the centuries. St. Teresa of Avila, the great Carmelite reformer, mystic and doctor of the Church was especially devoted to St. Joseph. From her Autobiography we read of St. Joseph,  “I know by long experience what blessings he can obtain for us from God. I have never known anyone who was truly devoted to him by particular services who did not advance greatly in virtue: for he helps in a special way those souls who commend themselves to him.”

At the last apparition of Fatima, on October 13, 1917, St. Joseph appeared holding the Child Jesus, who blessed the crowds. This was an emphatic indication of the importance of St. Joseph in these turbulent times.  Continue reading “St. Joseph, Patron of Families”