CATHOLIC WORLD NEWS: SAT. MAY 01, 2010: HEADLINES-
VATICAN STATEMENT ON APOSTOLIC VISITATION OF: LEGIONARIES OF CHRIST-
AMERICA: VENEZUELA- US PRIEST STABBED IN HOME-
AFRICA: SOMALIA: MORE THAN 45 PEOPLE KILLED IN BOMBING AT MOSQUE-
EUROPE: TRADITIONALIST BISHOPS MEET WITH VATICAN OFFICIALS-
ASIA: CHINA: WORLD EXPO OPENS IN SHANGHAI-
AUSTRALIA: CATHOLIC SUPER APPOINTS NEWS ADMINISTRATOR-
VATICAN STATEMENT ON APOSTOLIC VISITATION OF: LEGIONARIES OF CHRIST
Radio Vaticana report: Below we publish a Vatican Radio translation of the Press Office Statement released Saturday May 1, at the conclusion of a two day meeting in the Vatican on the outcome of the Apostolic Visitation of the Congregation of the Legionaries of Christ:
1. On the days April 30 and May 1, the Cardinal Secretary of State chaired a meeting in the Vatican with five bishops in charge of the Apostolic Visitation of the Congregation of the Legionaries of Christ (Bishop Ricardo Blazquez, archbishop of Valladolid, Msgr. Charles J. Chaput OFM Cap., Archbishop of Denver, Mgr. Andrella Ricardo Ezzati SDB, Archbishop of Concepción, Mgr. Giuseppe Versaldi, Bishop of Alexandria; Mgr. Ricardo Watty Urquidi, M.Sp.S., Bishop of Tepic). It was attended by the Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith and the Congregation for Institutes of Consecrated Life and Societies of Apostolic Life and the Substitute for General Affairs of the Secretariat of State.
One of the sessions took place in the presence of the Holy Father, to whom the Visitors presented a summary of their report, which had been previously submitted.
During the visitation over 1,000 Legionnaires were met in person and hundreds of written documents were examined. The Visitors have visited almost all the religious houses and many of the works of the apostolate directed by the Congregation. They heard, orally or in writing, the opinion of many diocesan bishops of the countries where the congregation operates. The Visitors also met several members of the "Regnum Christi" Movement, although it was not the subject of the visit, especially men and women religious. They have also received considerable correspondence from laity and family members of the Movement.
The five Visitors testified to a sincere reception and a constructive spirit of cooperation shown them by the congregation and individual religious. While acting independently, they have reached a widely convergent evaluation and a shared opinion. They testified that to having met a large number of honest and talented religious individuals, many of them young, who seek Christ with genuine zeal and offer their entire lives to spread the Kingdom of God
2. The Apostolic Visitation was able to ascertain that the behaviour of Fr. Marcial Maciel Degollado has caused serious consequences in the life and structure of the Legion, so much so, to require a journey of profound re-evaluation.
The serious and objectively immoral behaviour of Fr. Maciel, supported by incontrovertible evidence, at times constitutes real crimes, and manifests a life devoid of scruples and of genuine religious feeling. The large majority of Legionaries were unaware of that life, particularly because of the system of relations created by Fr. Maciel, who had skilfully managed to build up an alibi, to gain the trust, confidence and surrounding silence and strengthen his role as a charismatic founder.
Not infrequently the lamentable disgracing and expulsion of those who doubted his upright conduct, and the misconception of not wanting to harm the good that the Legion was doing, had created around him a defence mechanism which made him untouchable for a long time , thus rendering knowledge of his real life difficult.
3. The sincere zeal of the majority of the Legionaries - which also emerged from the Visitation of the congregation houses and their many works, and which is appreciated by many - led many in the past to believe that the charges, which gradually became more insistent and widespread, could only be slander.
Therefore the discovery and knowledge of the truth about the founder resulted in surprise, dismay and deep sorrow among members of the Legion, as clearly evidenced by the Visitors.
4. From the results of the Apostolic Visitation it has emerged clearly, among other elements:
a) the need to redefine the charism of the Congregation of the Legionaries of Christ, preserving the core truth, that of "Militia Christi", which characterizes the apostolic and missionary action of the Church and which is not identifiable with efficacy at any cost;
b) the need to review the exercise of authority, which must be conjoined to the truth, in respect of conscience and to develop in light of the Gospel as an authentic ecclesial service;
c) the need to preserve young people's enthusiasm of faith, the missionary zeal, the apostolic dynamism, through appropriate formation. Indeed, disappointment about the founder could call into question the core of this vocation and charism that belongs and is specific to the Legionaries of Christ.
5. The Holy Father would like to assure all Legionnaires and members of the "Regnum Christi" Movement that they will not be left alone: the Church has a strong desire to accompany them and help them in the path of purification that awaits them. It will also mean sincere confrontation with all those who, inside and outside the Legion, were victims of sexual abuse and of the power system devised by the founder. It is to them, at this time, that the thoughts and prayers of the Holy Father go, along with his gratitude to the many who, even in the midst of great hardships, had the courage and perseverance to demand the truth.
6. The Holy Father, in thanking the Visitors for the delicate work which they competently carried out with generosity and deep pastoral sensitivity, assured them that he will soon indicate the modalities of this process of accompaniment, starting with the appointment of a Delegate and a Study Commission on the Constitution.
The Holy Father will send a Visitor to the Regnum Christi Movement, in response to insistent requests from consecrated members thereof.
7. Finally, to all Legionaries of Christ, their families, committed lay people in the Regnum Christi movement, the Holy Father renewes his encouragement during this difficult time for the Congregation and each one of them. He urges them not to lose sight that their vocation, which originated from Christ’s call and is animated by the ideal to witness his love to the world, is a true gift from God, a treasure for the Church, the indestructible foundation on which to build their personal future and that of the Legion.
VENEZUELA- US PRIEST STABBED IN HOME
CNA report. An elderly Catholic priest was found dead at home in a small eastern Venezuelan town Thursday morning. While some reports claim the priest was a victim of a robbery, authorities are still investigating the crime.
Local media reports that parishioners first knew something was wrong when the elderly priest didn’t go out for his 5 a .m. jog. When he wasn't available to open the doors of the church that morning, locals went to his house where they found his body. The missionary priest had been gagged and stabbed multiple times.
The Bishop of Ciudad Guayana Mariano Parra, commented on the tragedy saying that the murder of Fr. Woods is a “sign of the violence” that is being experienced throughout Venezuela.
SOMALIA: MORE THAN 45 PEOPLE KILLED IN BOMBING AT MOSQUE
All Africa report. More than 45 people including Al Shabaab insurgents were killed and 100 others wounded in an Iraq-style twin bombing inside a mosque in Somalia's restive capital Mogadishu, witnesses and security officials told Garowe Online.
Witnesses said the bombs went off shortly after the afternoon prayers inside the Abdalla Shideye Mosque in Bakara Market, a stronghold for the insurgent group, Al Shabaab.
"The explosions were big and occurred inside the Mosque. The place turned dark with huge black smoke everywhere the mosque. I saw several dead and injured people," said eyewitness Abdinasir Ahmed.
He added that at the time of the explosion, a senior commander of Al Shabaab named Sheikh Fuad Mohamed Shongole was delivering a sermon to the mosque's congregants.
Ali Muse of Mogadishu Ambulance Service said they have assisted "over 100" wounded people, and some are in critical condition.
Sheikh Ali Mohammed Rage, Al Shabaab's spokesman, blamed "foreign mercenaries" for the blasts.
"We have warned you early what happened today, which are masterminded by foreign mercenaries. They are targeting worship places where Muslims congregate," he said.
In January, Al Shabaab issued a public warning that "foreign mercinaries," such as Xe (former BlackWater) and DynCorp private security firms, had arrived in Mogadishu to "carry out bombings."
Somalia's transitional federal government and African Union have both condemned the blasts, terming it a total disregard for the religion and human lives.
It is the second explosion within a week that rocked a mosque inside Bakara market, a major headquarters for Mogadishu's insurgents since 2007.
On Tuesday, two people were killed and several others wounded when a landmine went off inside Al Shabaab's Abu Hureyra mosque.
No group has claimed responsibility for the two explosions, which highlight similarities with what is happening in Iraq after the 2003 U.S. invasion, where mosques are frequently targeted with explosions.
However, today's mosque bombing marks the deadliest attack inside a prayer center in Somalia since the outbreak of the Horn of Africa country's civil war nearly 20 years ago.
Al Shabaab is battling to oust the fragile UN-backed Somali government from Mogadishu and to install an Islamic government.
Over 21, 000 civilians have been killed and millions others displaced since the eruption of deadly insurgency in 2007.
TRADITIONALIST BISHOPS MEET WITH VATICAN OFFICIALS
Telegraph.co.uk report: Leading traditionalist bishops in the Anglican Church have secretly told senior Vatican officials that they are ready to defect to Rome, taking clergy with them.
A group of Church of England bishops met last week with advisers of Pope Benedict XVI to set in motion steps that would allow priests to convert to Catholicism en masse Photo: AFP/GETTY
In a move likely to raise tensions between the two Churches, a group of Church of England bishops met last week with advisers of Pope Benedict XVI to set in motion steps that would allow priests to convert to Catholicism en masse.
They are set to resign their orders in opposition to the introduction of women bishops and to lead an exodus of Anglican clerics to the Catholic Church despite Dr Rowan Williams, the Archbishop of Canterbury, urging them not to leave.
Archbishop of Canterbury faces final divide in Anglican Communion over gay clergyIt would be the first time for nearly 20 years that large numbers of priests have crossed from the Church of England to Rome, and comes only weeks ahead of a crucial General Synod debate on making women bishops.
The Sunday Telegraph has learnt that bishops travelled to the Holy See last week to hold face to face discussions with senior members of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, the most powerful of the Vatican's departments.
The Rt Rev John Broadhurst, the Rt Rev Keith Newton and the Rt Rev Andrew Burnham, the bishops of Fulham, Richborough and Ebbsfleet respectively, are understood to have informed senior Catholic officials that Church of England clergy are keen to defect to Rome.
It is the first significant response to the Papal offer made last year, which opened the doors for Anglicans to convert while retaining key elements of their tradition.
The Most Rev Vincent Nichols, the Archbishop of Westminster, was unaware of the summit, which is likely to prove embarrassing to the Catholic Church ahead of the Pope's visit to Britain later this year as it will rekindle fears that it is trying to poach Anglican clergy.
One source close to last week's discussions said that the Anglican bishops raised concerns with the Vatican officials that there is opposition to them defecting from Catholic bishops in England.
Nevertheless, they made clear they have become so disillusioned with the Church's liberal direction that they are keen to accept the Pope's offer if they can finalise plans to implement it.
The Vatican summit will raise the stakes at the General Synod in July when the Church of England's parliament will vote on how to treat traditionalist clergy opposed to the introduction of women bishops. Although the number of priests who have openly said that they plan to defect has been small so far, the group is likely to grow if they are not given adequate provisions.
A leading Anglican cleric said: "This will seriously embarrass the Pope.
"It's a plot within the Vatican that they are desperate to keep quiet until they are ready to go public.
"Many will see this as proof that the Catholic Church is intent on poaching clergy from the Church of England despite its reassurances to the contrary."
CHINA: WORLD EXPO OPENS IN SHANGHAI
Asia News report. Songs, dances, lights, fireworks, and high tech images are part of the most extravagant Expo in history. However, ordinary people and migrant workers are kept out so as not to ruin the pretty picture. Environmental concerns get virtual treatment in one of the most polluted countries in the world.
Shanghai (AsiaNews) – With Andrea Bocelli singing “Vincerò! Vincerò!” (I will win! I shall win”), the sound of Giacomo Puccini’s Turandot reverberated during the grand ceremony that inaugurated tonight Expo 2010 Shanghai China. The same aria was heard again during one of the many phantasmagorical performances on the Huangpu River, full of lights, colours, sounds and never-ending fireworks.
“I will win!” also expresses China’s pride in showing the world and its people what local papers are calling a new page in the history of humankind’s progress, something China had been waiting for 159 years.
The perfect choreography of the dances, the video and laser display show the level of perfection China has reached. It also shows the mainland showing off its fierce splendour, at a time when the world is suffering, disabled by a world crisis.
However, there is something unconvincing about the whole thing. Somehow, the opening extravaganza was not as grand as the opening ceremony of the Beijing Olympics in 2008. Both did have one thing in common: the absence of ordinary people. World leaders, including Chinese President Hu Jintao and Vice Premier Wang Qishan, were present, but the average man and woman in the street were just like extras on a movie set.
Indeed, organisers had asked Shanghai residents and people from the rest of China to stay away from the opening ceremony so as not to get in the way of the show. Migrant workers who built the city’s beautiful skyline and the various pavilions that dot the Expo site were forced out of the city because their presence could harm China’s image.
The use of fascinating virtual icons gave an impression that the whole thing was one giant sales pitch for China with the domestic and international audience as potential buyers. Trees were virtual, the fire was virtual, flags were virtual, even the songs praising the unity of humanity and the hugs between Chinese and Tibetan children appeared make-believe, this in a world where trade and ideological tensions between China and the rest of the world are growing and Tibet is still under the thumb of martial law.
It must be said however that this time, unlike the Beijing Games, Tibetan children were “real” and not Chinese children dressed up as Tibetans.
With a theme like “"Better City, Better Life", the environment also played an important rhetorical role in the ceremony, which stressed and showed possible ways for life to be respectful of nature, where man and the cosmos are in harmony.
Both indoor and outdoor segments, especially on the river, glorified clear waters, skies, and plant green. However, as we pointed out, the plants too were make-believe. In fact, China’s waterways and its skies are so dirty that the People’s Republic leads the world in environmental pollution.
Indeed, people in Shanghai are now wondering how the city will dispose of all the garbage generated by a world-class event like Expo once it is over and everything is dismantled or knocked down.
“I will win!” may be a fitting sentiment but it is just make-believe.
CATHOLIC SUPER APPOINTS NEWS ADMINISTRATOR
Cath News report: Catholic Super has appointed Catholic Church Insurances (CCI) its new administrator, as the fund moves to finalise its merger with the National Catholic Superannuation Fund.
The appointment to take the place of incumbent administrator AAS followed an exhaustive tender process, Catholic Super chief executive Frank Pegan told Investor Daily.
"Our contract with AAS was coming to an end, so we went to the market with a new tender. I am confident that CCI's commitment to Catholic Super members will provide an enhanced and improved administration system going forward," Pegan said.
"Being the only client of CCI means that our intellectual capital will remain safe."
The fund will be boosting its member services following the merger with the National Catholic Superannuation Fund, which was announced in April 2009, Investor Daily adds.
SPOUSE OF THE BLESSED VIRGIN MARY AND FOSTER FATHER OF JESUS
Feast: March 19
Information: Feast Day: March 19
Died: 1st century
The glorious St. Joseph was lineally descended from the greatest kings of the tribe of Judah, and from the most illustrious of the ancient patriarchs; but his true glory consisted in his humility and virtue. The history of his life hath not been written by men; but his principal actions are recorded by the Holy Ghost himself God entrusted him with the education of his divine Son, manifested in the flesh. In this view he was espoused to the Virgin Mary. It is an evident mistake of some writers, that by a former wife he was the father of St. James the Less, and of the rest who are styled in the gospels the brothers of our Lord; for these were only cousin-germans to Christ, the sons of Mary, sister to the Blessed Virgin, wife of Alphaeus, who was living at the time of our Redeemer's crucifixion. St. Jerome assures us1 that St. Joseph always preserved his virgin chastity; and it is of faith that nothing contrary thereto ever took place with regard to his chaste spouse, the Blessed Virgin Mary. He was given her by heaven to be the protector of her chastity, to secure her from calumnies in the birth of the Son of God, and to assist her in his education, and in her journeys, fatigues, and persecutions. How great was the purity and sanctity of him who was chosen the guardian of the most spotless Virgin! This holy man seems, for a considerable time, to have been unacquainted that the great mystery of the Incarnation had been wrought in her by the Holy Ghost. Conscious, therefore, of his own chaste behaviour towards her, it could, not but raise a great concern in his breast to find that, notwithstanding the sanctity of her deportment, yet he might be well assured that she was with child. But being , as the scripture calls him, and consequently possessed of all virtues, especially of charity and mildness towards his neighbour, he was determined to leave her privately, without either condemning or accusing her, committing the whole cause to God. These, his perfect dispositions, were so acceptable to God, the lover of justice, charity, and peace, that before he put his design into execution he sent an angel from heaven, not to reprehend anything in his holy conduct, but to dissipate all his doubts and fears, by revealing to him this adorable mystery. How happy should we be if we were as tender in all that regards the reputation of our neighbor; as free from entertaining any injurious thought or suspicion, whatever certainty our conjectures or our senses may seem to rely on; and as guarded in our tongue! We commit these faults only because in our hearts we are devoid of that true charity and simplicity, whereof St. Joseph sets us so eminent an example on this occasion.In the next place we may admire in secret contemplation with what devotion, respect, and tenderness he beheld and adored the first of all men, the new-born Saviour of the world, and with what fidelity he acquitted himself of his double charge, the education of Jesus and the guardianship of his blessed mother. "He was truly the faithful and prudent servant," says St. Bernard,2 "whom our Lord appointed the master of his household, the comfort and support of his mother, his foster-father, and most faithful co-operator in the execution of his deepest counsels on earth." "What a happiness," says the same Father, "not only to see Jesus Christ, but also to hear him: to carry him in his arms, to lead him from place to place, to embrace and caress him, to feed him, and to be privy to all the great secrets which were concealed from the princes of this world!" "O astonishing elevation! O unparalleled dignity!" cries out the pious Gerson,3 in a devout address to St. Joseph, "that the mother of God, queen of heaven, should call you her lord; that God himself, made man, should call you father, and obey your commands. O glorious Triad on earth, Jesus, Mary, Joseph, how dear a family to the glorious Trinity in heaven, Father, Son,, and Holy Ghost! Nothing is on earth so great, so good, so excellent." Amidst these extraordinary graces, what more wonderful than his humility! He conceals his privileges, lives as the most obscure of men, publishes nothing of God's great mysteries, makes no further inquiries into them, leaving it to God to manifest them at his own time, seeks to fulfil the order of providence in his regard without interfering with anything but what concerns himself. Though descended from the royal family which had long been in the possession of the throne of Judea, he is content with his condition, that of a mechanic or handicraftsman, and makes it his business, by labouring in it, to maintain himself, his spouse, and the divine Child. We should be ungrateful to this great saint if we did not remember that it is to him, as the instrument under God, that we are indebted for the preservation of the infant Jesus from Herod's jealousy and malice, manifested in the slaughter of the Innocents. An angel appearing to him in his sleep bade him arise, take the child Jesus, and fly with him into Egypt, and remain there till he should again have notice from him to return. This sudden and unexpected flight must have exposed Joseph to many inconveniences and sufferings in so long a journey, with a little babe and a tender virgin, the greater part of the way being through deserts and among strangers; yet he alleges no excuses, nor inquires at what time they were to return. St. Chrysostom observes that God treats thus all his servants, sending them frequent trials to clear their hearts from the rust of self-love, but intermixing seasons of consolation.4 "Joseph," says he, "is anxious on seeing the Virgin with child; an angel removes that fear; he rejoices at the child's birth, but a great fear succeeds; the furious king seeks to destroy the child, and the whole city is in an uproar to take away his life. This is followed by another joy- the adoration of the Magi; a new sorrow then arises; he is ordered to fly into a foreign unknown country, without help or acquaintance." It is the opinion of the Fathers that upon their entering Egypt, at the presence of the child Jesus all the oracles of that superstitious country were struck dumb, and the statues of their gods trembled, and in many places fell to the ground, according to that of Isaiah xix.:
After the death of King Herod, which was notified to St. Joseph by a vision, God ordered him to return with the child and his mother into the land of Israel, which our saint readily obeyed. But when he arrived in Judea, hearing that Archelaus succeeded Herod in that part of the country, apprehensive he might be infected with his father's vices- cruelty and ambition-he feared on that account to settle there, as he would otherwise probably have done, for the more commodious education of the child. And therefore, being directed by God in another vision, he retired into the dominions of his brother Herod Antipas, in Galilee, to his former habitation in Nazareth, where the wonderful occurrences of our Lord's birth were less known. St. Joseph being a strict observer of the Mosaic law, in conformity to its direction annually repaired to Jerusalem to celebrate the passover. Archelaus being banished by Augustus and Judea made a Roman province, he had now nothing more to fear at Jerusalem. Our Saviour being advanced to the twelfth year of his age, accompanied his parents thither; who, having performed the usual ceremonies of the feast, were now returning with many of their neighbours and acquaintances towards Galilee, and, never doubting but that Jesus had joined himself with some of the company, they travelled on for a whole day's journey without further inquiry after him before they discovered that he was not with them. But when night came on, and they could hear no tidings of him among their kindred and acquaintance, they, in the deepest affliction, returned with the utmost speed to Jerusalem; where, after an anxious search of three days, they found him in the temple, sitting among the learned doctors of the law, hearing them discourse, and asking them such questions as raised the admiration of all that heard him, and made them astonished at the ripeness of his understanding: nor were his parents less surprised on this occasion. And when his mother told him with what grief and earnestness they had sought him, and to express her sorrow for that, though short, privation of his presence, said to him, "Son, why hast thou thus dealt with us? Behold, thy father and I sought thee in great affliction of mind": she received for answer that, being the Messias and Son of God, sent by his Father into the world in order to redeem it, he must be about his Father's business, the same for which he had been sent into the world; and therefore that it was most likely for them to find him in his Father's house: intimating that his appearing in public on this occasion was to advance his Father's honour, and to prepare the princes of the Jews to receive him for the Messias; pointing out to them from the prophets the time of his coming. But though in thus staying in the temple, unknown to his parents, he did something without their leave, in obedience to his heavenly Father, yet in all other things he was obedient to them, returning with them to Nazareth, and there living in all dutiful subjection to them.
Aelred, our countryman, Abbot of Rieval, in his sermon on losing the child Jesus in the temple, observes that this his conduct to his parents is a true representation of that which he shows us, whilst he often withdraws himself for a short time from us to make us seek him the more earnestly. He thus describes the sentiments of his holy parents on this occasion."5 Let us consider what was the happiness of that blessed company, in the way to Jerusalem, to whom it was granted to behold his face, to hear his sweet words, to see in him the signs of divine lie wisdom and virtue; and in their mutual discourse to receive the influence of his saving truths and example. The old and young admire him. I believe boys of his age were struck with astonishment at the gravity of his manners and words. I believe such rays of grace darted from his blessed countenance as drew on him the eyes, ears, and hearts of every one. And what tears do they shed when he is not with them." He goes on considering what must be tie grief of his parents when they had lost him; what their sentiments, and how earnest their search: but what their joy when they found him again. "Discover to me," says he, "O my Lady, Mother of my God, what were your sentiments, what your astonishment and your joy when you saw him again, and sitting, not among boys, but amidst the doctors of the law: when you saw every one's eyes fixed on him, every one's ears listening to him, great and small, learned and unlearned, intent only on his words and motions. You now say: I have found him whom I love. I will hold him, and will no more let him part from me. Hold him, sweet Lady, hold him fast; rush on his neck dwell on his embraces, and compensate the three days' absence by multiplied delights in your present enjoyment of him. You tell him that you and his father sought him in grief. For what did you grieve? not for fear of hunger or want in him whom you knew to be God: but I believe you grieved to see yourself deprived of the delights of his presence even for a short time; for the Lord Jesus is so sweet to those who taste him, that his shortest absence is a subject of the greatest grief to them." This mystery is an emblem of the devout soul, and Jesus sometimes withdrawing himself, and leaving her in dryness, that she may be more earnest in seeking him. But, above all, how eagerly ought the soul which has lost God by sin to seek him again, and how bitterly ought she to deplore her extreme misfortune! As no further mention is made of St. Joseph, he must have died before the marriage of Cana and the beginning of our divine Saviour's ministry. We cannot doubt but he had the happiness of Jesus and Mary attending at his death, praying by him, assisting and comforting him in his last moments: whence he is particularly invoked for the great grace of a happy death, and the spiritual presence of Jesus in that tremendous hour. The church reads the history of the Patriarch Joseph on his festival, who was styled the saviour of Egypt, which he delivered from perishing by famine; and was appointed the faithful master of the household of Potiphar, and of that of Pharaoh and his kingdom. But our great saint was chosen by God the saviour of the life of him who was the true Saviour of the souls of men, rescuing him from the tyranny of Herod. He is now glorified in heaven, as the guardian and keeper of his Lord on earth. As Pharaoh said to the Egyptians in their distress, "Go to Joseph"; so may we confidently address ourselves to the mediation of him, to whom God, made man, was subject and obedient on earth.
The devout Gerson expressed the warmest devotion to St. Joseph, which he endeavoured by letters and sermons to promote. He composed an office in his honour, and wrote his life in twelve poems, called Josephina. He enlarges on all the circumstances of his life by pious affections and meditations. St. Teresa chose him the chief patron of her order. In the sixth chapter of her life she writes thus: "I chose the glorious St. Joseph for my patron, and I commend myself in all things singularly to his intercession. I do not remember ever to have asked of God anything by him which I did not obtain. I never knew anyone who, by invoking him, did not advance exceedingly in virtue; for he assists in a wonderful manner all who address themselves to him." St. Francis of Sales, throughout his whole nineteenth entertainment, extremely recommends devotion to him, and extols his merits, principally his virginity, humility, constancy, and courage. The Syrians and other eastern churches celebrate his festival on the 20th of July; the western church on the 19th of March. Pope Gregory XV in 1621, and Urban VIII in 1642, commanded it to be kept a holiday of obligation.
The holy family of Jesus, Mary, and Joseph presents to us the most perfect model of heavenly conversation on earth. How did those two seraphim, Mary and Joseph, live in their poor cottage! They always enjoyed the presence of Jesus, always burning with the most ardent love for him, inviolably attached to his sacred person, always employed and living only for him. What were their transports in beholding him, their devotion in listening to him, and their joy in possessing him! O heavenly life! O anticipation of the heavenly bliss! O divine conversation! We may imitate them, and share some degree of this advantage, by conversing often with Jesus, and by the contemplation of his most amiable goodness, kindling the fire of his holy love in our breasts. The effects of this love, if it be sincere, will necessarily appear in our putting on his spirit, and imitating his example and virtues; and in our studying to walk continually in the divine presence, finding God everywhere, and esteeming all the time lost which we do not spend with God, or for his honor.
Matthew 13: 54 - 58
54 and coming to his own country he taught them in their synagogue, so that they were astonished, and said, "Where did this man get this wisdom and these mighty works?
55 Is not this the carpenter's son? Is not his mother called Mary? And are not his brothers James and Joseph and Simon and Judas?
56 And are not all his sisters with us? Where then did this man get all this?"
57 And they took offense at him. But Jesus said to them, "A prophet is not without honor except in his own country and in his own house."
58 And he did not do many mighty works there, because of their unbelief.