There is nothing better for man than to eat and drink and provide himself with good things by his labours. Even this, I realized, is from the hand of God. 

-  Ecclesiastes 2:24

 

Pope Francis I, Audience, 1 May 2013:

In the Gospel of St. Matthew, one of the times when Jesus returns to his native region, to Nazareth, and speaks in the synagogue, the Gospel underlines his fellow villagers' astonishment at his wisdom, and the question they ask one another: is not this the Carpenter's son?" (13:55). Jesus enters into our history, he comes into our midst, being born of Mary by the work of God, but with the presence of St. Joseph, the legal father who guards him and even teaches him his trade. Jesus was born and lived in a family, in the Holy Family, learning from St. Joseph the carpenter's trade, in the workshop of Nazareth, sharing with him his commitment, hard work and satisfaction, as well as each day's difficulties. This calls to mind for us the dignity and importance of work. … Work is part of the plan of God's love; we are called to cultivate and safeguard all the goods of creation and in this way we participate in the work of creation!


St. Peter Julian Eymard: At Nazareth Joseph's days were filled with work which necessarily took him away at times from his Infant God. During these hours Mary replaced him, but when evening brought him home again, he would pass the entire night in adoration, never tiring, only too happy for the chance to contemplate the hidden riches of Jesus' divinity. For he pierced the rough garments the Child wore, until his faith touched the Sacred Heart. In profound adoration he united himself to the special grace of each one of the events in the life of Jesus.

 

St. Josemaria Escrivá: Joseph was a craftsman from Galilee, just one man among many. What had life to offer to someone from a forgotten village like Nazareth? Nothing but work: work every day, with the same constant effort. And at the end of the day, a poor little house in which to rest and regain energy for the next day. But the name Joseph, in Hebrew, means "God will add." God adds unsuspected dimensions to the holy lives of those who do his will. He adds the one important dimension which gives meaning to everything, the divine dimension. To the humble and holy life of Joseph he added — if I may put it this way — the lives of the Virgin Mary and of Jesus, our Lord.

Venerable Pope Pius XII, 11 March 1958: O glorious Patriarch, Saint Joseph, humble and just artisan of Nazareth, thou hast given to all Christians, and particularly to us, an example of a perfect life through diligent labor and admirable union with Jesus and Mary.

 

Pope Leo XIII, Quamquam Pluries: For Joseph, of royal blood, united by marriage to the greatest and holiest of women, reputed the father of the Son of God, passed his life in labor, and won by the toil of the artisan the needful support of his family. It is, then, true that the condition of the lowly has nothing shameful in it, and the work of the laborer is not only not dishonoring, but can, if virtue be joined to it, be singularly ennobled. Joseph, content with his slight possessions, bore the trials consequent on a fortune so slender, with greatness of soul, in imitation of his Son, who having put on the form of a slave, being the Lord of life, subjected himself of his own free-will to the spoliation and loss of everything.


Blessed Pope John Paul II, Redemptoris Custos:  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.


Assumption of St Joseph, Nobility of St Joseph, Sanctification of St Joseph in the Womb, Happy and Holy Death of St Joseph, Holy Espousals, Marriage of the Virgin, Patron of Workers, Patron of a Happy Death, Virgin Father of Jesus, Foster Father, Entrustment, Consecration, Apostolate of St Joseph, Patron of the Church,