Sunday, February 18, 2018

3rd Sunday of St. Joseph

Lorenzo Lotto. Madonna and Child with St. Jerome, St. Joseph and St. Anne.

Joseph, Husband of Mary

Painters have traditionally depicted Joseph as an elderly man in order to emphasize the perpetual virginity of Mary. Yet it is more likely that Joseph was not much older than Mary. You don't have to wait to be old or lifeless to practice the virtue of chastity. Purity comes from love; and the strength and joy of youth are no obstacle to a noble love. Joseph had a young heart and a young body when he married Mary, when he learned of the mystery of her divine motherhood, when he lived in her company, respecting the integrity God wished to give the world as one more sign that he had come to share the life of his creatures. (St. Escriva, Christ is passing by)

Let us ask the Holy Patriarch to teach us how to live this kind of love in the circumstances to which God has called us. We want this love that lights up the heart (St. Thomas, On Charity) so that we may perform our ordinary work with joy.


  1. The tradition of presenting Joseph as an older man go back much further than suggested. The Protoevangelium of James gives us a widower Joseph who married Mary understanding that he was to be her caretaker (she who was a consecrated temple virgin).

  2. Well, I don't really go for those old legends from dubious sources. Church Tradition, sure thing. Gospels, sure thing. But that other stuff really just distracts us from the point it seems to me.