Patron Saint

Patron Saint

Introduction

Saint Joseph was the husband of Our Blessed Lady and the legal father of Jesus. Saint Matthew's genealogy of Jesus tells us that Saint Joseph was a descendant of King David and so through him, Jesus belongs by law to the house of David (Mt 1:1-16).

Vocation

The Scripture picture Saint Joseph as a man of honour, who strived to do what was right and who wasdeeply in love with Our Blessed Lady, his betrothed. When he found out that Mary was with the child before they came to live together, he wanted to spare her the publicity and so decided to divorce her informally (Mt 1:18-20).

Saint Joseph was also a man of prayer, able to discern the will of God communicated by the angel in a dream. He had both the courage and the generosity to respond to God's call, to take Mary home and adopt Jesus as his son (Mt 1:20-25).

Life in Nazareth

In the town of Nazareth, where the Holy Family settled after return from Egypt, Saint Joseph was known as a carpenter and it is very likely that he taught Jesus his trade (Mt 13:55).

Thus he took care of, provided for and protected the Holy Family and "Jesus increased in wisdom, in stature and in favour with God and men." (Lk 2:52)

Saint Joseph appears in the Gospels for the last time when the Holy Family went to Jerusalem for a feast and our Lord stayed behind in the Temple without his parents knowing. When they found him, after four days, he was talking to the doctors of the Law who were all astounded at his intelligence and replies. Our Lord was then twelve years old (Lk 2:41-50).

Death of Saint Joseph

Saint Joseph's death is not recorded in the Scriptures. One hint suggesting that he died before the beginning of Jesus' public ministry is that Saint Joseph does not appear at the wedding feast in Cana, although our Lady and our Lord with His disciples are there(Jn 2:1-10).

Tradition has it that Saint Joseph died a happy death, with Our Saviour and Our Lady at his side and so he is also a patron of a happy death.

Feast days

Two main feasts of Saint Joseph are the solemnity of Saint Joseph, the Husband of the Blessed Virgin Mary, celebrated on the 19th of March and the memorial of Saint Joseph the Worker, celebrated on the 1st of May.