Commentary on the Gospel of

Fr. Roland Chidiebere, CMF

St. Joseph: responsible, spiritual, hardworking husband.               

The Lord spoke to Nathan and said: “Go, tell my servant David: … I will raise up your heir after you … I will be a father to him, and he shall be a son to me … I will make his royal throne firm forever.” We all believe that these promises are fulfilled in the person of our Lord Jesus Christ. And blessed are the lucky couple, Mary and Joseph, through whom they are realized: “Jacob was the father of Joseph, the husband of Mary. Of her was born Jesus who is called the Christ.” They are numbered among the children of Abraham who awaited the fulfillment of the great promise (the poor of the Lord, the anawim), who put their trust in the Lord.

The Scripture presents Joseph not just as a righteous young man, but also as a responsible, hardworking husband. He was a great discerner of God’s will. Realizing that the woman, Mary, betrothed to him was with child, of course not his child; though worrisome for him, he had the patience and prudence to respect her personality and not disgrace or expose her to death penalty. Certainly, he was a protector of lives – of Mother Mary and of the unborn child Jesus. We are obliged to learn from Joseph that human life is gift from God, hence sacred. We all ought to be proactive in protecting life at all levels.

He was a carpenter, for sure the bread winner of the family. No doubt, from his hard work he provided daily bread for the holy family. Our Lord Jesus would later on continue the act of providing not just for his immediate family but for His family, the family of the entire human race. He fed the four thousand and five thousand, each ate and was satisfied! Just as Joseph shared with his family and fed His family, the same way we are encouraged to generously share with others.

The responsible husband guards and protects his household. At the event of threat, during the martyrdom of the Holy Innocents, Joseph led the way to Egypt. With Mary, he took the risk of sneaking out of the sight and sword of Herod with his militant soldiers. Joseph is the great protector of the helpless. We recourse to him for protection. And of course, only a deeply spiritual person, one who has the fear of the Lord does what Joseph does: he formally confirmed that he is a religious man with his presence in the Temple at the presentation and during the feast of the Passover – all with Jesus and Mary. The family that prays together, stays together!


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