March 19, 2020
Filed In: Faith
While I normally post once per week, I wanted to write today because it’s a special day. While the World grapples with the Coronavirus pandemic and the United States economy grinds to a halt, we find ourselves celebrating the first day of Spring. Panic, fear, and uncertainty run through our minds, while nature seems not to have noticed. My azalea bushes are in full bloom, birds are chirping and building their nests, and the trees bring forth their new leaves.
Today is not just special because we are in the season of renewal. Today is a special day because it’s the Solemnity of St. Joseph. The Church holds this celebratory feast in such high esteem that the practices of Lent are suspended. Priests around the world wear their white chasubles to honor the purity of St. Joseph. The Gloria finds its way back into the sequence of the Mass. Today is a day of rejoicing and celebration in the middle of Lent.
Seven years ago, as I began work on this project, I specifically chose the Solemnity of St. Joseph as the launch date. My first post went live on the morning of March 19, 2013. At the time, I thought it appropriate to launch a blog about the vocation of marriage on the day that the Church honors the prototypical husband. A year later, I published my first book, The Transition.
This year, I’ve taken my devotion to St. Joseph to an entirely new level. Although I was given the middle name Joseph at my Baptism, I never developed a true relationship with the silent saint. In January, Fr. Donald Calloway published the book Consecration to St. Joseph, a 33 day devotional that, in one of its cycles, reaches its apex today.
For the past 33 days, I’ve been immersed in the theology of St. Joseph. I’ve learned about him, about his apparitions, about his place in the Church, and about the very special relationship he desires to cultivate with me. I’ve learned about his eagerness to point me to his foster son, and how only now is the Church beginning to fully understand and truly embrace his role in salvation history.
I’ve learned about his many titles, including Glory of Domestic Life and Terror of Demons. I’ve learned about how his life and virtue directly correlate not only to my vocation as husband and father, but to my role as a stay-at-home dad. I learned about the privileges of devotion to St. Joseph, including the attainment of virtue, escape from sin, increased love for Mary, the grace of a happy death, filling demons with terror, gaining health of body, and securing the blessing of children. These privileges are not the works of a genie, but gifts from a loving father for the sanctification of his children.
Today, I formalize our bond. Today, I entrust my vocation, health and well-being to his patronage. Today, I consecrate myself to St. Joseph, my spiritual father.
St. Joseph is humble in ways that I will never understand. He lead, protected, and provided for the Holy Family of Nazareth, but he never seeks credit or adoration. He desires nothing more than for the faithful to honor and respect Mary, his wife, and give themselves totally to his son, Jesus Christ.
May this Solemnity, in the midst of a difficult time, be a source of joy, celebration and peace for you and your family. May St. Joseph wrap you in the protection of his cloak and bring your intentions to Jesus. May the work of Catholic Husband continue to be a source of knowledge, inspiration, and guidance for you in the years to come.