Below are pieces of a blog I wrote last year after Father’s Day where I reflected on Saint Joseph as a father in comparison to modern day fathers. As today we celebrate the life of Saint Joseph, the patron saint of families, I encourage you to read and share what a beautiful life Saint Joseph led and how we can imitate the love he showed for his family in our own lives.
Sunday I celebrated Fathers Day with my parents, siblings, cousins, and grandparents. We had a barbecue and spent the day outside with all the little cousins running around eating up the attention. Earlier that morning I sat in Mass and looked at the statue of Saint Joseph behind the choir and reflected on Saint Joseph as protector of the Holy Family (Virgin Mar.0y and Jesus). Saint Joseph’s betrothed wife was pregnant by the power of the Holy Spirit, and despite any doubt, or the embarrassment of Mary being thought of as unfaithful, Saint Joseph accepted his duty as the foster father of Jesus. Even through hard times, when the Holy Family had to flee to Egypt, Saint Joseph protected his family.
As I continued to think through this I thought of the many unborn children who were aborted because of the father’s apathy or his pressuring of the mother of his child to abort. There is a big social difference between today and the time of Jesus, and it broke my heart that morning to think of all the fathers who were not celebrating Father’s Day because of their apathy; an apathy that was not known to Saint Joseph.
This has continued to be on my mind this week. . . While I was working on a "Call to Action" piece for young people to be involved in pro-life work, I asked a friend of mine what she would say to encourage others be be involved in pro-life ministry. Here is what she sent me:
“I encourage men to stand up for the women in their life, and recognize that they are needed more than ever in these decisions. There are better choices and better options (than abortion), and the baby is theirs too. Men have a say in this choice. Many women would not have aborted their children if they knew they had the father’s support. I call upon men in society to be bold, and to stand up for life!” ~ Maddie Lopez Age 16 ~
Like me, Maddie is a young woman who has sidewalk counseled many times before, and we often see women at the abortion clinic who share that they are aborting because their boyfriend wasn’t excited or didn’t care when they said they were pregnant. Sometimes the boyfriend even insists on abortion.
Similar to Maddie, I encourage men to be protectors of their children both inside and outside of the womb. The child’s environment shouldn't be the influence that determines how your child will be cared for. Think again to the example of St. Joseph, he embraced the opportunity to be a father to the baby of a child that was not even his own. St. Joseph can be thought of as one of the greatest of men because he said, "yes", and in doing so raised the Greatest Man of all time, Jesus. I hope more men look to Saint Joseph as a role-model.
“O St. Joseph, foster father of Jesus Christ and true spouse of the Virgin Mary, pray for us and for the suffering and dying of this day/night.”
Happy Feast Day of Saint Joseph!
Dignity of the Born and Unborn,