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SATURDAY OF THE 2ND WEEK OF LENT

19TH MARCH 2022


THE GREATNESS OF JOSEPH


Solemnity of Saint Joseph, husband of the Blessed Virgin Mary



What is it that made Saint Joseph so great? He wasn’t immaculately conceived as our Blessed Mother was. He was not divine like Jesus. But he was the head of the Holy Family, its guardian and its provider. He became the legal father of the Savior of the World and the spouse of the Mother of God. But Joseph is not great only because he was given such incredible privileges. First and foremost, he was great because of the choices he made in life. Today’s Gospel refers to him as a “righteous man” and as a man who “did as the angel of the Lord commanded him.” Thus, his greatness is primarily on account of his moral righteousness and obedience to the will of God. The same for us, we become great in loving, obeying and serving God.

Joseph’s obedience is so great and powerful, radical and unconditional. His obedience is especially seen in the fact that he obeyed the voice of God given to him in the four dreams recorded in Scripture.

In his first dream, Joseph is told “do not be afraid to take Mary your wife into your home. For it is through the Holy Spirit that this child has been conceived in her. She will bear a son and you are to name him Jesus, because he will save his people from their sins” (Matthew 1:20–21). In his second dream, Joseph is told, “Rise, take the child and his mother, flee to Egypt, and stay there until I tell you. Herod is going to search for the child to destroy him” (Matthew 2:13). In his third dream, Joseph is told,

“Rise, take the child and his mother and go to the land of Israel, for those who sought the child’s life are dead” (Matthew 2:20). And in his fourth dream, Joseph is warned to go instead to Galilee rather than Judea (Matthew 2:22). In all this, Joseph was not very prompt to the voice of God though it was not physically or direct. He was not given that direct command from God but he never doubted about the command. This is a powerful example you and I. we need to be very much attentive to the voice of the Holy Spirit and ready to follow even we are not yet sure of what the command is all about; because in doubtful situation, God’s work and power work so great. We need to listen to our inner voice, the voice of our conscience because God can communicate and reveal to us His will in many ways.

Las point I want to express is about Joseph’s selfless sacrifice in fulfilling the command of God. It demanded great sacrifice including material and physical sacrifice. Joseph responded with complete submission and full determination. The commands Joseph received were not insignificant. His obedience required that he and his family travel great distances, take up residence in strange lands, and do so all in faith.

In all this we can learn many things from Joseph. He was a great man, taking care and protecting his own family. He was docile to the command of God. His way of raising his family was so special in such a way that he allowed God to be the Master of each and every decision he needed to make. He put first God’s agendas not his. He gave great place for the Holy Spirit in educating and bringing Jesus up. All this is great lesson for each and every family especially for all the heads of family not to put their own agenda in the place of God’s.

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