MARCH DEVOTIONS IN THE MONTH OF DEAREST SAINT JOSEPH

Let us consider the Christian family and its duties and responsibilities, as we think of Saint Joseph

The family has a special role to play throughout the life of its members, from birth to death. It is truly the sanctuary of life: the place in which life (the gift of God) can be properly welcomed and protected against the many attacks to which it is exposed, and can develop in accordance with what constitutes authentic, human growth. Consequently the role of the family in building a culture of life is decisive and irreplaceable. Christian marriage ia a sacrament of salvation. It is the pathway to holiness for all members of a family. With all my heart, therefore, I urge that your homes be centres of prayer, homes where families are at ease in the presence of God, homes to which others are invited to share hospitality with prayer and the praise of God. The Church is vitally concerned for the pastoral care of the family in all difficult cases. We must reach out with love – the love of Christ – to those who know the pain of failure in marriage, to those who know the loneliness of bringing up a family on their own, to those whose family life is dominated by tragedy, or by illness of mind or body. I praise all those who help people wounded by the breakdown of their marriage, by showing them Christ's compassion, as well as counselling them according to Christ's truth. Through prayer you will receive the strength to resist the spirit of the world. You will receive the power to show compassion to every human being – just as Jesus did. Through prayer you will have a part in salvation history as it unfolds in your generation. In prayer you will be able to enter into the heart of Jesus and understand His feelings towards His Church. By using the Psalms, the Prayer Book that Jesus used, you will be able to repeat, under the action of the Holy Spirit, the praise and thanksgiving that have been offered to God for centuries by His people.

{Pope John Paul II}

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Saint Joseph, foster father of Jesus, is the epitome of a devoted and loving father and husband. Let us pray to him always to protect all Christian families in these deeply troubling, rebellious times!

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Let us pray: May Christ the Lord, the Universal King, the King of families, be present in every Christian home, as He was at Cana in Galilee, bestowing light, joy, serenity and strength. We beg Him that every family may generously make its own contribution to the Coming of His Kingdom in the world. May every Christian family know God's love and entrusted to Him, to Mary and to Joseph.

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And a Passing Thought

Faith is the beginning and love is the end – and God is the two of them brought into unity. Then comes everything else that makes up a Christian. [Saint Ignatius of Antioch]

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JESUS, MARY AND JOSEPH: KEEP OUR FAMILIES ALWAYS IN THY LOVE!

SAINT JOSEPH, PATRON OF THE UNIVERSAL CHURCH: PROTECT US ALL OUR DAYS!

SAINT JOSEPH, EVER FAITHFUL AND JUST: WE BLESS AND THANK THEE!

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Whereupon her husband Joseph (for he was a just man, and would not have her put to open shame) was for sending her away in secret. But hardly had this thought come to his mind, when an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream, and said: ‘Joseph, son of David, do not be afraid to take thy wife Mary to thyself, for it is by the power of the Holy Ghost that she has conceived this child; and she will bear a son, whom thou shalt call Jesus, for He is to save His people from their sins.'

Saint Matthew. Chapter 1. Monsignor Knox Translation

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Let us pray: We beseech Thee, O Lord, that we may ever be aided by the merits of Saint Joseph, the Spouse of Thy most holy Mother: that, what of ourselves we cannot obtain, may, through his constant intercession, be given unto us. Who lives, one God, world without end. Amen.

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The Just shall grow as the lily: and flourish for ever before the Lord. [Hosia. Chapter 14]

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