Not so much is known about Joseph, although we can learn more about him through the writings of some mystics. Some say that God revealed him and Mary to each other through prayer before they ever met. He knew that a very special woman named Mary existed before he ever met her. Consequently, they prayed for each other before they knew each other and before they married. Other writings say that Joseph had a difficult childhood, that he came from a difficult family where his older brothers teased him for being so pious and for always loving prayer so much. Fulton Sheen in his book on ďThe Worldís First Love,Ē believed that Joseph and Mary were a true love story, that God had brought them together, even though it may have looked like an arranged marriage. Perhaps we canít know for sure.
In Scriptures, we can learn that Joseph was a man with the virtue of obedience. He simply did what God was asking of him, even if it meant getting up in the middle of the night with his family to flee to Egypt. Joseph was a forgiving man. He was a brave man. He was a kind man. Even when he thought Mary had been unfaithful to him with another man, he dealt with her kindly. Even when they were not getting along as a couple, they were able to treat each other with kindness. We should aim for that, especially in our relationships with our boyfriends or girlfriends, husbands, or wives. This is a wonderful quality to have.
Joseph was a protector of virgins. He himself was a virgin and remained a virgin his whole life, as the writings of some mystics reveal. In these times, he wants to be venerated for his chaste heart. He is leading us back to chastity and purity. He protected Mary, another virgin, during their time of dating, during their courtship. He was a man of self-restraint and temperance. He had the virtue of chastity to a high degree. We should work toward that in our dating relationships as well. If we start to fast one time a week, to give something up, to say no to our body, we will grow in the virtue of temperance. We will then be able to apply this to our relationships. We will not push our boyfriends or girlfriends toward sin, we will truly love them and want what is best for them. We will learn to practice self-restraint with each other.
Sex, or the one-flesh union as it was called in ancient times, is a gift to be reserved for marriage. When we have relations with someone we are not married to, we lose Godís protection. We hurt our own soul as well as the souls of the people we sleep with. We are also at the risk for disease and pregnancy. We can gain Godís grace again by going to confession and repenting. But repenting means trying not to commit that sin again. Ask God to help you make improvements to your soul to avoid sexual sin and to grow in the virtue of chastity. Wear the brown scapular or the white scapular of St. Joseph or do the Angelic Warfare Confraternity of St. Thomas. Three hail marys for purity at night is a beautiful practice. God loves us and wants us to be with one man or one woman forever, one man or woman who will commit to us with a vow before God and love us for our whole life. Then we are protected by God, then we are in a blessed union.
Joseph was a model worker. He was a carpenter and did his work with skill, excellence, and pride. He worked in the workshop for many years of his life, quietly applying his trade. Certainly, he taught the Christ Child this trade. He probably learned many things from Jesus in this trade as well. We can work like Joseph did in our professions as single people, working with excellence, doing our work well, doing our work thoroughly. This is a way of sanctifying our daily work and it means that we make our daily work into a prayer.
Joseph had a happy death, surrounded by Jesus and Mary. We can ask Josephís intercession for a happy death as well, that we will have Our Lord and Our Lady near.
What are the ways singles can imitate St. Joseph?
Joseph lived chastity to a high degree. We should imitate him in this. Chastity is one of those virtues that is going to bring joy into our lives and also will give us a happier marriage. So as a single, choose to be a born again virgin or a virgin. So if you are a born again virgin or a virgin, whether you are a guy or a girl, donít be afraid to tell people. Let your light shine. Itís beautiful. You can also be a born-again virgin. Today is a new day, start fresh today. Make the decision to start living chastity today regardless of the past and wait for your spouse in the sacrament marriage. This is such a beautiful thing also that is so pleasing to God. Let your light shine brightly in our world! And God has such a great love for you, He also loves this because He knows you will view others with love. Wear the Brown Scapular and say the Rosary. St. Joseph and Our Lady will help you in this area of your life.
And then when you are dating someone, respect their decision to live chastity and aim for a chaste dating relationship as well. As a man, you can be a protector of born again virgins or virgins to the women you date. Lift those women up, treat them like princesses, protect and defend them. As a woman, take care of the man you are dating. Treat him as a prince, be kind to him, let him take care of you. Donít lead him to sin, aim for modesty in your dress, help him. Remember you both want to get to heaven! Remember also, that Our Lady of Fatima warned us against sins against the sixth and ninth commandment. Letís help each other. Letís change the culture.
2. ASK ST. JOSEPH FOR HELP
Iíve often turned to St. Joseph for guidance in dating relationships. Often, if I have gone on a few dates with someone or am thinking of it, I do a nine-day novena to St. Joseph asking for guidance. He never fails to come through for me. One time, I was pondering whether I should go out with one gentleman, I was doing a novena to St. Joseph. During the course of the novena, I had lunch with a friend who had also gone out with this man unbeknownst to me. She gave me some good advice on the situation. Quite often, St. Joseph has a sense of humor. I have done the Seven Sundayís Novena to St. Joseph to find a spouse also. One year, I was doing this novena, at the end of it, my brother who had just come back from an all menís weekend retreat, announced that he wanted to set me up with one of the gentleman from the retreat. St. Joseph responds! I went on a wonderful few dates with this man. Even though it didnít work out in the long-run with this gentleman, it was a good experience and all because of St. Joseph.
St. Joseph will help us in many ways in our lives if we turn to him.
St. Joseph, model of workers, pray for us singles.
St. Joseph, guardian of virgins, pray for us singles.
St. Joseph, pillar of family life, pray for us singles.
St. Joseph, terror of evil spirits, pray for us singles.
St. Joseph, pattern of patience, pray for us singles.
St. Joseph, terror of demons, pray for us singles.