In this Year of St. Joseph celebrating 150 years since being proclaimed the Patron of the Universal Church, one of St. Joseph’s two feast days will be celebrated this month on March 19. The Church offers a plenary indulgence for those who participate in established prayer practices with special devotion to St. Joseph.

You may also consider inviting your students to prepare for and consecrate their lives to St. Joseph. A thirty-three day preparation leading to a consecration on May 1, the Feast of St. Joseph the Worker begins on March 30. The Marian Fathers of the Immaculate Conception offer more explanation along with resources to assist anyone who wishes to make an act of consecration to St. Joseph.

Share these words of reflection on St. Joseph with your students:

 

In the Gospel according to Luke, Saint Joseph is portrayed as a discreet man, conscious of the immense responsibility he must accept without quite understanding it. He trusts in God, to be sure. Still, he shows great humility in accepting the role into which he is cast. He is a faithful, silent servant and a servant so retiring that he was almost forgotten for several centuries, even by the church. In short, Joseph’s existence is justified only by the Child he serves. He accompanies Mary, he protects his Son, he works in silence. He fulfills his mission, that of being God’s most docile instrument as he reveals his love to the world. Joseph is the man forgotten when we revere those he served. Joseph stands aside to make for those greater than he is. He works ceaselessly, and yet never a word is spoken about him. Joseph is Jesus’ first friend, Mary’s loving companion: a true family man, who would do anything for those he loves.

Joseph is not a doctor of the law or a scribe. He is an uneducated laborer, working with his bare hands. Joseph is an exile, struggling to survive in a foreign land. He is an ever-watchful confidant, listening and giving counsel. We go to Joseph, without being overwhelmed by awe, when we want to converse with the Mother and Child. Joseph is the mediator, the link, the bridge.

—excerpt from Brother André: Friend of the Suffering, Apostle of Saint Joseph by

 Jean-Guy Dubuc