This past week we celebrated the Sacred Heart of Jesus and the Immaculate Heart of Mary. Each of these devotions remind us of undying love. The Immaculate Heart of Mary has a special significance to me because it is specifically mentioned in Scripture when Simeon predicted Mary’s heart would be “pierced by a sword”. This prediction of the sorry she would experience upon the death of her son should fill each of us with love for the sacrifice made by her Son to save us all. The one who is present for the prediction and through the life of Jesus is the one least mentioned in Scripture, Joseph.
We do not know much about Joseph other than he was a carpenter and he loved Mary beyond all telling. He was willing to face ridicule and scorn for taking Mary into his home when she was carrying a child not his own. He loved Jesus as his own and raised Him, teaching Him a trade and how to be a man. We can assume Jesus loved him as His father and did everything He was asked to do as a member of the Holy Family. We do not know how old Jesus was when Joseph died, but as when any child loses a parent, we can guess His sorrow was profound and Jesus continued to carry on His father’s trade until His heavenly Father called Him out to fulfill the mission for which He was sent.
The example of the fatherhood of Joseph is one each father should strive to emulate. There are many children in the world without the example of a father willing to do anything and everything for His children. There are also many men who fulfill the role of “Daddy” to children who are not their own and seek be the best example possible for the children in their lives. The men who father children and remain with them throughout their lives are blessed indeed because they have the opportunity to mold the life of the child in their life and help them become example of loving and giving persons. I pray today for those men raising children, those they have fathered and those who are examples to children in their lives. May these children grow and come to know the sacrifices made for them and love and honor these men for all they have done and do for their families. I also pray for those men who have fathered children and are not a part of their lives. May the Lord fill their hearts with the knowledge of what they have rejected and may they experience a conversion of heart and mind to become a part of the lives of their children. May all men look to Joseph as an example of fatherhood and become that example to their children. God bless.