Saint Joseph

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Saint Joseph holding baby Jesus

Saint Joseph, the husband of The Virgin Mary and earthly father of Jesus Christ, is the patron saint of carpenters and fathers. He is a member of The Holy Family. His feast day is celebrated on March 19th.

Saint Joseph is one of the few Saints that we find referenced in the Holy Bible itself. As the would-be husband to the Blessed Virgin Mary and the earthly father to Jesus Christ, Joseph is mentioned in all 4 Gospels. From the accounts we have, Joseph was a simply working man who followed the practices and traditions of Judaism as it was practiced in his day. His test came when Mary became pregnant prior to their nuptials, at a time and in a culture where such things were great scandals. However, Saint Joseph did not publicly spurn her; even before the Archangel Gabriel revealed to him that Mary's babe was the Son of God, Joseph's behavior, though he was heartbroken, was considerate and discrete. Then, in a dream, Joseph received an angelic revelation of the divine nature of Mary's pregnancy. With strength, humility, and a pure heart, Joseph shouldered the responsibility of caring for and protecting his family with loving kindness and determination. Because of his behavior through this trial, Joseph is known for possessing three virtues especially: obedience to God, a non-judgmental nature, and steadfastness. Today, Saint Joseph is called upon for matters relating to the family, the home and the household. Additionally, as Saint Joseph the Worker, he assists those who petition him for help with work, employment, and the development of skill in one's craft. A popular magical prayer-spell invokes Saint Joseph for the swift sale of a home or other real property. This spell involves burying a small statue of him on the grounds of the site to be sold. Some say to bury the statue in the front yard, some in the back; some say to bury it upside down, some not. This spell is widely known and used by many.

St. Joseph is almost always pictured as a bearded man in robes who holds white lilies. The beard is symbolic of the fact that he was a devout Jew and the lilies point to the celibacy of his early marriage. In some images Joseph is also seen holding or working with an array of carpenter's tools, a representation of the trade he practiced in life and that allowed him to provide for his family.

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