Lenten Reflection – 19th March

“He had made up his mind to do this when the angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream.” Matthew 1:20

Today is the Feast of Saint Joseph. We know very little about him. He doesn’t even speak in the biblical accounts of his story.

But we do know he was a man of great faith. A man who was willing to put that faith into action.

He had planned to divorce Mary informally, but all this changed when the angel visited him. He listened to the angel and did as he was instructed.

He was a simple village carpenter who became Mary’s husband and raised the child Jesus. He travelled to Bethlehem and fled to safety in Egypt when warned of danger. He went back to look for Jesus in the Temple when he stayed behind in Jerusalem as a boy.

Everything he does speaks of a man who loves and cares for his family, who believes in the mission entrusted to him by God, and who is determined to carry it out.

As Pope Francis wrote, “The Gospel presents Joseph as a just man, hard-working and strong. But he also shows great tenderness, which is not a mark of the weak but of those who are genuinely strong, fully aware of reality and ready to love and serve in humility.” (Laudato Si’, 242)

We all have the chance to put our faith into action. To listen to what it is that God is asking of us, and to act upon it.

Perhaps today we can follow the example of Saint Joseph, and quietly go about doing what we know to be right, with tenderness and compassion.