As I write this column, we are preparing for two special feasts ~ that of Saint Patrick, March 17, and that of Saint Joseph, Protector of Christ, March 19. This year, 2021, Pope Francis has proclaimed the Year of Saint Joseph, the protector of Jesus. In our Archdiocese, we are invited to participate in a Novena to Saint Joseph, praying for his intercession on the 19th of each month.
Here is the prayer from the Novena that you might use on any day during this year ~
O Saint Joseph, Spouse of the Blessed Virgin Mary and Foster Father of the Divine Child, Jesus, you were entrusted as the protective guardian of the Holy Family in Nazareth. Give today this same protection to the family of the Church in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia. Intercede with Christ before the Father of us all: For the clergy and faithful, For married couples and single men and women, For all those in the consecrated life, For families and young people, For the poor, the lonely and neglected, For all the sick, suffering and dying. For a deepening of our spiritual life, For a strengthening of the moral life, For a bolder witness to the truth of the Gospel.
For all of us, Saint Joseph, with you as our firm example, may we remain confident in the plan of the Father for us, with lives of faith rooted in the saving death and resurrection of his Son and ever faithful to the demands of the Christian life with the grace of the Holy Spirit. Through Christ our Lord. Amen.
Saint Joseph, patron and protector of the Universal Church. Pray for us!
The Office for Divine Worship has many more resources and much information on Saint Joseph that will inspire and inform. Check these out at http://archphila.org/joseph/ . May we invoke not only Saint Joseph’s protection but also draw upon his faith, hope and love as we continue our Lenten journey towards Easter, celebrating the Lord Jesus’ resurrection and victory for our sakes.
God bless you, God love you,