The WORD in Other Words by Fr Melencio Balay SVD (Philippines)
March 19 Feast of Saint Joseph
2 Samuel 7,4-5.12-14
Matthew 1,1.618-21.24 or Luke 2,41-51
As we celebrate today the Solemnity of St. Joseph, the Spouse of the Blessed Virgin Mary, we give glory to God for giving us a person like St. Joseph, a model father for his son Jesus and a loving husband to the Blessed Virgin Mary, a protector and a good provider for his family.
Although Scriptures have only a few accounts about the life of St. Joseph, there is enough for us to believe that he was a pious and faithful servant of the Lord.
In today‘s gospel for instance, no single word is uttered by St Joseph. But after listening to the Lord‘s exhortations, he selflessly obeyed and committed himself to taking Mary and the child Jesus under his care.
In our society today, absentee fatherhood is not a new phenomenon, but it makes us realize how important the role of the father is in nurturing children, families, and communities. Various studies show that children with involved and loving fathers are significantly more likely to do well in school, have a healthy self-esteem, exhibit empathy and pro-social behavior, and avoid high-risk behaviors such as drug use, truancy, and criminal activity compared to children who have uninvolved fathers.
To strengthen again the family, fathers nowadays should emulate the example of St. Joseph, a righteous man, a father to the Lord Jesus and loving husband to the Blessed Virgin Mary. He selflessly offered his life to fulfill God‘s redeeming plan for the world.