Saint Joseph, you were the guardian of Jesus on earth, be our guardian too
St Joseph, spouse of BVM (Feast) : Thursday, 19th March 2020
2 Sam. 7:4-5,12-14,16; Ps. 89(88):2-3,4-5,27,29;
Mt. 1:16,18-21,24 or Lk. 2:41-51 (Psalter proper)
Joseph was a “just man” (Mt 1:19). The only character trait affirmed about Joseph by Scripture. That he decided to put Mary away secretly because he did not want to divorce her publicly, may seem to imply that he was not a very just and honest man.
Yet, it is precisely in this context that he is called “just”. This fact challenges us not to be so superficial in reading the Gospel but to reflect more deeply. Instead of thinking of “just” in any social or socio-political sense, we must think of it in a biblical sense.
With greater insight into biblical terminology, we may affirm that “just” means “a man of God”, someone who is sensitive to the presence of God in every aspect of life. Being sensitive to God, Joseph would have realised that Mary’s pregnancy could not be the result of infidelity and must, somehow, be from God.
Hence, his fidelity to God and his sensitivity demanded that he withdraw from his relationship with Mary. He wanted to protect her reputation and guard her against being misunderstood. In response, God called him to continue his relationship with Mary as Jesus’ guardian.
Saint Joseph, as You were the guardian of Jesus on earth, guard us in our life’s pilgrimage on earth.