Skip to main content

Conversations with the saints: St. Joseph

In this blog I will be holding a conversation with St. Joseph, the great saint, the one who was privileged to be the foster father of our Lord.  The passages that are in bold are from the Bible.  Here is the interview as it occurred:

Me: "Good Afternoon St. Joseph.  How are you doing?"

St. Joseph:  "I am doing very well thank you."

Me: "I have been very excited to finally meet with you.  You have been one of my favorite saints, and I have prayed to you often.  In my eyes you are a celebrity, sort of like Elvis!"

St. Joseph:  (Laughing) "Well then I am grateful for your admiration; even though I can't sing or move like Elvis I appreciate the honors."

Me: "Now that I have compared you to Elvis, we can begin our interview.  Tell me a little about your background, upbringing, etc."

St. Joseph: "As it is written in the Gospel of Matthew and Luke I am a direct descendant of the Davidic line of succession.  My father was Jacob who was also a devout man."

Me: "Can you tell me a little more about your father?"

St. Joseph: "Yes.  My father Jacob was a simple, humble, unassuming man.  He faithfully lived his life according to the principles of our Jewish faith.  He was well known in the temple as a faithful servant of the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob.  He also owned a carpentry shop in Nazareth and was well known in our local area as an expert in carpentry.  I am indebted to my father for teaching me the faith and a craft that has allowed me to sustain myself and my family."

Me:"Can you tell us a little about your relationship with Mary? particularly how it began"

St. Joseph: "Sure.  Mary was the daughter of Anne and Joachim.  I had met her previously only once during a wedding of Baruch, who was a local townsman.  Anne, her mother approached me one day asking me if I wanted to marry her.  I accepted this request because I knew that Anne and Joachim were good and faithful people."

Me: "Can you tell us a little more about your initial interactions with Mary?"

St. Joseph: "Sure.  After meeting with Anne I then met with Mary in person.  She was a gentle, unassuming and meek creature.  She was also very young, which caused me to have some doubts, but since she came from such a faithful lineage as Anne and Joachim I was content."

Me:"Can you elaborate your reactions and feelings when Mary told you that she was pregnant with Messiah from "the spirit of God?"

St. Joseph: "Initially I was deeply troubled, because we had just celebrated our betrothal.  I was also deeply disturbed and hurt because I had taught that Mary had gone behind me back and had caused me great shame.  This didn't make any sense to me, since I knew her upbringing, so I initially decided that I would keep this between only us as not to cause a scandal in our village and to safeguard her life."

Me: "What finally convinced you that she was telling the truth?"

St. Joseph: "One night as I was sleeping and angel came to me and told me, "Joseph, son of David, do not fear to take Mary your wife, for that which is conceived in her is of the Holy Spirit." After this assurance I was consoled and I then resolved myself to follow the will of God as thoroughly as possible even if it was difficult or didn't make any sense to me."

Me: " Wow, that was very inspiring.  It was wonderful that even when we don't understand God's will, he still guides us to safety it seems that all we can and need to do is exercise our faith and he will do the rest.  Can you tell me about the night that Jesus was born.  Specifically the events that led to his birth?"

St. Joseph: "Sure.  About a month before the birth a decree went out from the emperor Caesar Augustus. Since I was from the Davidic line I needed to go to Bethlehem to enroll Mary and myself.  After we had made the journey to Bethlehem and enrolled ourselves we needed to look for an inn since Mary was very tired, and near to giving birth.  I searched and I searched about 6 different inns, but they were all occupied.  All of these inns were occupied because of the heavy amount of visitors due to the census.  After being rejected 6 times Mary and I prayed to the Lord to help us to find a place so that Mary could rest and give birth.  I found another inn, but the innkeeper said the same, that there was no place for us.  I persisted and I asked if he knew of anyone in the area and he replied that he knew of someone who owned a stable that was not occupiedI went to the place that he showed us and I approached this inn keeper and I asked him if we could have the stable.  He kindly answered that he did have a stable available.  Despite my initial misgivings about the sanitary conditions of the stable I accepted the offer and I prepared a place for Mary to rest and for Jesus."

Me: "Can you elaborate a little more about your feelings during this tumultuous time?"

St. Joseph:  " I was upset and frustrated.  Not so much because of my own struggles, but more so for Mary who was pregnant and nearing her time to give birth.  I was more concerned for her and our child's well being.  But despite my feelings I offered up my sufferings to the Lord and I sincerely placed myself in his will."



St. Joseph: "We were both in the stable when all of a sudden Mary begin having severe child birth pains.  I immediately prepared a place for her and I gently help her hands as she was giving birth.  After doing this for several hours,  Jesus finally came out, crying.  We were both overjoyed and awed by the faithfulness of God's providence.  After that I cleaned off Jesus and placed him in a feeding trough since that was the best location for him.  Soon after that we heard a group of visitors on the outside as they made their way in. I noticed that they were simple shepherds from the local countryside.  They explained to me that an angel had appeared to them telling them, "Be not afraid; for behold, I bring you good news of a great joy which will come to all the people; for to you is born this day in the city of David a savior, who is Christ the Lord."  We were both deeply moved by their humility and obedience to the voice of our Lord."

Me: " Can you explain a little about the Magi who came to visit Jesus?

St Joseph: " Were were one day tending to our normal affairs.  I went out to the market to purchase some items while Mary stayed behind to nurse Jesus.  As I was coming back I saw a wealthy caravan accompanied by what looked like three kings.  When they finally approached they asked to see the child and had explained to us that they had seen a North Star that led them to us.  They also explained that according to their studies of the stars that a new king was destined to be born.  After explaining this to us they preceded to give our child three gifts;  Gold, Frankincense and Myrrh.  We were astounded by these gifts since they were of great value.  Nonetheless we were moved and grateful for their generosity and respect."

Me: "Unfortunately our time is nearing it's end.  Do you have anything that you would like to say to the audience before we leave?"

St. Joseph: "Yes I would like to say something.  I just want to tell everyone that they need to trust in God with their entire beings, even if this trust seems to contradict basic logic and common sense.  This trust is the foundation that our Lord demands of all of his children.  Once we submit ourselves totally and completely to his will we will be serving him constantly blessing all of those we encounter.  The way of the Lord is quite simple, trust, and obey.  Everything flows from these two virtues."

Me: "Thank you so much for spending your time with me.  I look forward to the time where we will speak again."

St. Joseph: "We will meet again,  May God be always with you, in your heart, your mind, and most importantly in your soul."

Me: "Bye"

St. Joseph: "Bye"

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

10 Great Quotes from The Book of Sirach

The book of Sirach is a book that is often overlooked in the bible. This is unfortunate since this book contains many wise, practical saying on how to live a virtous life. The book was believed to have been written between 200-175 B.C.E.

Here are ten quotes that I feel best reflect this timeless work.

1."Do not become a beggar by feasting with\borrowed money, when you have nothing in your purse." Sirach 18:33

2."In all you do remember the end of your life, and then you will never sin." 7:36

3.."Glory and dishonor come from speaking; a man's tongue is his downfall." 5:13"

4."A wise man is cautious in everything." 18:27

5."One who trusts others is light minded." 19:4

6."If you pursue justice, you will obtain it and wear it as a glorious robe." 27:8

7."Many have fallen by the edge of the sword, but no many as have fallen because of the tongue." 28:18

8." In all of your work be industrious and no sickness will…

George Michael, Carrie Fisher, and The Afterlife

I was stunned, as was most of the world was when I heard about the passing of George Michael on Christmas day.  Michael possessed enormous talent was and one of the most successful acts in the 1980's and early 90's

Shortly after Carrie Fisher died.  Fisher was famous for her legendary role as princess Leia from the Star Wars movies.  Strangely her mother also died the day after.

2016 was notable year for celebrity deaths.

Some names include: Prince, Glenn Frey, David Bowie,  Doris Roberts, Alan Rickman, and Muhammad Ali.

As a Catholic these deaths got me thinking about the transient nature of life, and the inevitability of death.

Marcus Aurelius, the stoic, emperor, philosopher king wrote about the passing nature of life as he reflected, "Time is a sort of river of passing events, and strong is its current; no sooner is a thing brought to sight than it is swept by and another takes its place, and this too will be swept away."

Even though I agree mostly with Aurelius&#…

Me vs. The Almighty

There is famous scene in the bible where Jacob wrestles with God.  Jacob fights with God until God takes out a bone from Jacob's thigh. Interestingly, God eventually relents and stops fighting with Jacob. After this dramatic incident Jacob is renamed Israel which literally means, "he who struggles with God."

I can relate to this story.  Many times in my life I have argued with God. I still do. (my wife can attest to that.) Many times I have criticized his tactics, his ways, and his wisdom. In my worst moments I have even used choice language. I have a complicated relationship with God. Like Jacob I have wrestled with God. (thigh bone still intact)

Recently I approached a priest friend of mine and told him of my struggles with God.  I expected that he would chide me for my lack of respect and informality. What this priest said was illuminating and encouraging. He told me that it was OK at times to be angry with God, God understood. He in fact encouraged this honesty and o…