A Consecration to St. Joseph by Erica Leung
St. Joseph. What comes to mind when you think of him? Maybe when you were growing up (or learning about him currently) you’ve heard about him as Jesus’ “foster father” or the man who willingly and lovingly said “yes” to God in taking Mary, the Holy Mother of our Lord, as his wife even though she was bearing a child that was not his biologically.
Maybe, you have not thought about St. Joseph very much at all except when it is Christmas time. As a teenager into my young adult life, I knew St. Joseph was an important figure when it came to the birth of Jesus -- but other than that I didn’t really think of him that often. This was not until I made my consecration to St. Joseph.
This year is the Year of St. Joseph, as proclaimed by Pope Francis in his Apostolic Letter, Patris Corde. Catholics across the world are honoring the ordinary, yet obedient man who dedicated his entire life to God’s plan for salvation by taking on the role of being a tender and loving father to Jesus and husband to Mary. When I learned that I could make my consecration to St. Joseph, I immediately knew that I wanted to learn more about him and how I could embody his wisdom, faith and love for my Lord.
So what IS a consecration to St. Joseph? A consecration to St. Joseph is acknowledging that St. Joseph is our spiritual father (note: he’s not God, our Heavenly Father) but someone you “entrust yourself entirely into his paternal care so that he can help you acquire his virtues and become holy.” I embarked on this spiritual journey by reading “Consecration to St. Joseph: The Wonders of Our Spiritual Father” by Father Don Calloway every day for 33 days. Each day has a section written describing part of the Litany to St. Joseph and how St. Joseph lived out a holy life. Actively praying with each reading was very helpful in guiding my understanding of who St. Joseph truly was.
One section of the Litany reading that resonated with me was “Mirror of Patience.” This section describes how St. Joseph is the pillar of the virtue of patience because he had to do a great deal of waiting. Whether this was through waiting for God’s guidance when he learned of Mary’s pregnancy or taking Mary and Jesus to Egypt, St. Joseph was always ready to do God’s will. I hope that in times of trial, I will remain calm, peaceful, kind and abandoned to Divine Providence just like St. Joseph did.
I admire St. Joseph’s faithfulness to Mary and Jesus even though what was asked of him was not easy. I really desire the traits of St. Joseph and I know I can’t do this without seeking his spiritual guidance. Now that I’ve completed my prayerful journey with St. Joseph, I hope I share what I’ve learned with others through my actions and words.
“Devotion to St. Joseph is powerful because he gives his protection, his example and his blessing.”
-St. George Preca