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Musings 2007/218

St. Joseph

Scriptural passages on St. Joseph are very meagre, just as they are with the BVM.
However in spite of this, Popes and scholars of The Church, down the centuries have been loud in their praises of this husband of Mary and foster-father of Jesus.
And that he was husband and father is

certainly enough
for anyone to realise
that Joseph must have been a rare personage indeed -

in his heights of goodness and loyalty; in his spiritual capacity.
That he is declared Patron of The Church is an honour of exceptional moment. If we tried to call someone else
Patron of The Church, no matter who, we would find him wanting. Even one of the great Saints - perhaps Augustine or Patrick; perhaps a Prophet - even Abraham or Elias; perhaps a great Pope - even Peter himself: no, only Joseph is fit for this Office.
And so, we glimpse the greatness of this husband of Mary.
But Joseph was the guardian of Mary and Jesus throughout those early days in Israel and Egypt and afterwards, taking responsibility for the family not only in providing house and sustenance, basic comforts and protection, but also in giving fatherly instruction on the history of Israel and the surrounding nations, on the customs and manners of his people not excluding religious matters. That is to say, doing everything that a
perfect father should do.
It has often been said that Jesus, Mary and Joseph are a family that perfectly reflects The Holy Trinity in the physical creation and how could anyone deny this?
Jesus is The Son of God and so He certainly reflects the Second Person of The Trinity - He IS The Second Person. Because Jesus issues directly from His Mother, Mary, then Mary perfectly reflects The Eternal-father from Whom Jesus also issues, in eternity.
And of course, Joseph reflects The Eternal-spirit, being husband of Mary and foster-father of Jesus.
Now it is The Spirit that
will come upon Mary and the power of The Most High that will overshadow her, and

here we may perceive a further identification
of Joseph
with The Spirit.

Here we can identify The Spirit - to look at the reverse position - with Joseph, Mary's husband, in The Spirit's holy action upon Mary at the conception of Jesus in her sacred womb.
Because, while Joseph did not produce the seed by which Jesus was conceived, the fact that Joseph is the perfect reflection of The Spirit, indicates - in a certain way, one might safely suggest - that Joseph was not altogether excluded in this conception, certainly in a spiritual intention.
Most certainly, from the instant Joseph accepted the Truth of the divine Action in Mary's pregnancy, he continued the work of fatherhood begun by The Spirit.
Further, it might also be suggested,

that as The Spirit acted in His Capacity
within the Godhead,
fulfilling The Eternal-father's Fatherhood
in the conception of Jesus in Mary's womb,
so might The Spirit have acted
on behalf of Joseph
in his human fatherhood of Jesus
in Mary's womb.

That is to say, the fatherhood of Joseph is not to be undermined in any way.
In some way, I would believe, Josephs' fatherhood of Jesus is particularly cherished by God - more even, then
any other human fatherhood.
And so, I have devised the following prayer, hopefully with heavenly assistance:-

Dear Father Joseph,
Patriarch of Patriarchs of the Old Covenant
the unchallenged Patriarch of the New Covenant,
being Father of The Christ
and husband of Mary, The Immaculate Conception.
Therefore Christ's Vicars have named you
Patron of The Universal Church.
Just as Mary was the fulfilment of The Eternal-father's Era,
The Era of Goodness,
and just as your Son Jesus fulfilled His Own Era,

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