During the COVID-19 pandemic, we invoke the intercession of a sleeping saint: Saint Joseph, the spouse of blessed Virgin Mary and the father of Jesus.
I don’t know why. I am gradually increasing my devotion to Saint Joseph. Keeping aside the popular devotion, prayers to the sleeping saint are growing.
He is the principal patron of Canada. Workers regard him as their patron saint. The month of March is dedicated to him. He is called the protector of the Catholic church and model for fathers, husbands, and leaders. He is the guardian of the Holy family and our families, especially amidst the times of coronavirus. Admittedly, the devotion to Saint Joseph is increasing with the popes emphasizing him.
The scripture proclaims St. Joseph as just and wise man. Pope Francis says that saint Joseph became a guardian and proctor “by being constantly attentive to God, open to the signs of God’s presence and receptive to God’s plans, and not simply his own.”
Saint Joseph is the patron saint of retired Pope Benedict XVI. Pope Francis formally inaugurated his papacy on St. Joseph’s feast day, March 19.
Pope Francis popularized statues of Saint Joseph sleeping – or, better, dreaming – placing difficult prayer requests under the statue. Since 2013, St. Joseph’s name is permanently in the Eucharistic prayers used at most Masses in the Latin rite.
I never knew that there was a Rosary of St. Joseph. For the first time, I prayed to honor the feast of St. Joseph. It is like Marian rosary, substituting the “Hail Mary” with “Joseph, Son of David, and husband of Mary; we honor you, guardian of the Redeemer, and we adore the child you named Jesus. Saint Joseph, the patron of the universal church, pray for us, that like you, we may live totally dedicated to the interests of the Savior. Amen.”
I looked on the net. The Oblates of St. Joseph use it as their special devotion. The five mysteries of St. Joseph Rosary: Betrothal to Mary (Mt 1:18); Annunciation to Joseph (Mt 1:19-21); Birth and Naming of Jesus (Mt 1:22-25); Flight into Egypt (Mt 2:13-15) and Hidden Life at Nazareth (Mt 2:23; Lk 2:51-52).
The internet is flooded with prayers to the sleeping Saint. I am not finding one with an imprimatur – officially approved version by the Roman Catholic Church.
I am not a great adherent of formal prayers. But some prayers and saints coincidently are my favorite. You can look at the EWTN website for nine special prayers to St. Joseph. There is a prayer to St. Joseph after Rosary composed by Pope Leo XII in 1889.
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