Feast Day of the Glorious Saint Joseph!

We continue with meditations taken from writings on the life of St. Joseph as found in Msgr. Gentilucci’s, The Life of the Blessed Virgin Mary:

 “Saint Joseph possessed the talent of combining in this world the toils of his office and glorious ministry with the most constant and sublime contemplation, as Saint Athanasius[1] assures us, and how that he is reaping in heaven the fruit of the glorious actions of his most holy life, he freely grants his aid to souls devoted to the exercise of prayer….the example offered [is] Saint Teresa of Jesus, who, under the protection of Saint Joseph, soared like the eagle to the highest contemplation, and induced other souls to imitate her flight..

“…among those cited by Father Barri, a great spiritual master, are two, who, desirous of devoting themselves to mental prayer, could not succeed in consequences of the difficulties which they encountered;  but having chosen Saint Joseph as a director, they suddenly beheld all obstacles overcome, and the once thorny and sterile path thick sowed with heavenly delights.  Another person, adds the same author, wishing to be entirely delivered from the distractions which molested him in time of prayer, took the holy patriarch as his advocate, and by his patronage obtained more even than he sought;  for he not only obtained the grace of a most elevated prayer, but a deliverance even in dreams, of the least thoughts against purity, being likened by both favors to the most blessed souls of Saint Joseph, of whom the eloquent Chrysostom said, [2] that his ministry required him to be a spirit free from those disquiets which give rise to importunate thoughts, and those troubles that banish repose and serenity from the heart.

“Saint Joseph bestowed, as Father Barri assures us, the same tranquility on a nun, who was greatly harassed with temptations in time of prayer and other spiritual exercises, to such a degree that she lost the hopes of attaining that precious liberty which is a kind of pledge and sign of divine love; still, far from giving way entirely to distrust, she recurred to the mother of the afflicted with the prayer:  ‘My mother and mistress, free me from this storm of troubles which surrounds me; grant me that peace and perfect tranquility which I need to converse with my God with a serene and fervent heart.  If thou wilt not listen to my humble prayer, vouchsafe to inspire me to address one of those saints most beloved in heaven, whom I may invoke in this anguish that breaks my heart.’  Scarcely had she concluded her petition when Saint Joseph appeared before the eyes of her understanding, filling her with a torrent of serenity and interior delight, which made her forget the cruel afflictions that had deprived her of all hopes of a close union with her Lord in the holy exercise of prayer.”

[1] St. Athanasius, Sermo de descriptione Mariae.  Patrionani, Lib. ch. iii § 7.)

[2] St. Chrysostom, Hom. 5. in Matthaeum.

About ihmprayforme

lifelong Catholic; homeschooled our children; have been regularly attending the Tridentine Mass for at least the past 17 years.
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