Pope St. John Paul II, Homily, 19 March 1987, on God’s Trust in St Joseph: The Church admires the simplicity and the depth of St Joseph’s faith. She admires and venerates his rectitude, his humility, his courage. How many values God entrusted to Joseph in his humble and hidden life as an artisan of Nazareth! He entrusted to him his own eternal Son, who in the house of Joseph embraced all that constitutes the truth of the Son of man. To Joseph God entrusted Mary, her virginity and her maternity–her virginal maternity. He entrusted to him the Holy Family. God entrusted to Joseph what is most holy in the whole history of creation, and that humble man, that carpenter, did not disappoint God’s trust. To the very end he showed himself faithful, thoughtful, provident, solicitous–after the model of the eternal Father Himself.



Pope St. John Paul II, Redemptoris Custos, on the Holy Espousals:  In the Liturgy, Mary is celebrated as "united to Joseph, the just man, by a bond of marital and virginal love." There are really two kinds of love here, both of which together represent the mystery of the Church -virgin and spouse - as symbolized in the marriage of Mary and Joseph. “Virginity or celibacy for the sake of the Kingdom of God not only does not contradict the dignity of marriage but presupposes and confirms it. Marriage and virginity are two ways of expressing and living the one mystery of the Covenant of God with his people,” the Covenant which is a communion of love between God and human beings.



Pope St. John Paul II, Redemptoris Custos, on the Circumcision of Christ:  At the circumcision Joseph names the child "Jesus." This is the only name in which there is salvation (Acts 4:12). Its significance had been revealed to Joseph at the moment of his "annunciation": "You shall call the child Jesus, for he will save his people from their sins" (Matthew 1:21). In conferring the name, Joseph declares his own legal fatherhood over Jesus, and in speaking the name he proclaims the child's mission as Savior.



Pope St. John Paul II, Redemptoris Custos, on the Return from Exile:  And so Jesus' way back to Nazareth from Bethlehem passed through Egypt. Just as Israel had followed the path of the exodus "from the condition of slavery" in order to begin the Old Covenant, so Joseph, guardian and cooperator in the providential mystery of God, even in exile watched over the one who brings about the New Covenant.



Pope St. John Paul II, Redemptoris Custos, on St. Joseph the Worker: Work was the daily expression of love in the life of the Family of Nazareth. The Gospel specifies the kind of work Joseph did in order to support his family: he was a carpenter. This simple word sums up Joseph's entire life. For Jesus, these were hidden years, the years to which Luke refers after recounting the episode that occurred in the Temple: "And he went down with them and came to Nazareth, and was obedient to them" (Luke 2:51). This "submission" or obedience of Jesus in the house of Nazareth should be understood as a sharing in the work of Joseph. Having learned the work of his presumed father, he was known as "the carpenter's son." If the Family of Nazareth is an example and model for human families, in the order of salvation and holiness, so too, by analogy, is Jesus' work at the side of Joseph the carpenter… At the workbench where he plied his trade together with Jesus, Joseph brought human work closer to the mystery of the Redemption.



Pope St. John Paul II, Redemptoris Custos, on the Patronage of St. Joseph:  The patronage of St. Joseph must be invoked, and it is always necessary for the Church, not only to defend it against dangers ceaselessly cropping up, but also and above all to support it in those fearful efforts at evangelizing the world, and spreading the new evangelization among nations where the Christian religion and life were formerly the most flourishing, but are now put to a difficult test…. May St. Joseph become for all a singular master in the service of the saving mission of Christ that is incumbent on each and every one of us in the Church: To spouses, to parents, to those who live by the work of their hands or by any other work, to persons called to the contemplative life as well as to those called to the apostolate.

Click above to read the Apostolic Exhortation "REDEMPTORIS CUSTOS" by St. John Paul II


PRAYER of POPE ST. JOHN PAUL II
whilst on Pilgrimage to ST JOSEPH'S ORATORY
Montreal, Canada

Saint Joseph, with you, for you, we bless the Lord. He chose you among all men to be the chaste spouse of Mary,the one who would remain at the threshold of the mystery of her divine maternity, and who, after her, would accept it in faith as the work of the Holy Spirit. You gave to Jesus legal paternity in the line of David.You constantly watched over the Mother and the Child with an affectionate concern, in order to protect their lives and to allow them to accomplish their destiny. The Saviour Jesus deigned to submit himself to you, as to a father, throughout his childhood and adolescence and to receive from you an apprenticeship in human life, while you shared his life in the adoration of his mystery.

You remain at his side. Continue to protect the whole church, the family born of the salvation of Jesus. Protect especially the people of Canada who have placed themselves under your patronage. Help them to come closer to the mystery of Christ in that attitude of faith, submission and love that was your own. See the spiritual and material needs of all those who beg your intercession, particularly families and those who are poor, in every sense; through you, they are certain to find Mary's maternal face and the hand of Jesus to assist them.

And you, Blessed (Saint) Brother Andre Bessette, porter of the college and keeper of this Oratory, give hope to all those who continue to seek your help. Teach them confidence in the virtue of prayer, and, with it, the path of conversion and the sacraments. Through you and through Saint Joseph, may God continue to pour out his blessings on the Congregation of the Holy Cross, on all those who come to this Oratory, on the City of Montreal, on the people of Quebec, on the Canadian people, and on the whole church. + Amen.