St. Joseph surpasses all the other Saints
He was the crown of the patriarchs and of the ancestors of the Messiah announced to the world; he inherited all their benedictions, and saw them accomplished.
He was the crown of the saints of the Old Testament; their prerogatives, their wishes were united and perfected in his person.
He is the crown of the saints of the New Testament: in his quality as head of the Holy Family, of whom a Man-God was a member, he surpasses them all in dignity; and as he was in this charge the wise and faithful servant by excellence, he must surpass them all in glory.
Virtues to be imitated in St. Joseph
His faith, which was very lively and fruitful in good works.
His self-possession in adversity as in prosperity.
His zeal for the honor of God and the salvation of men.
Blessed Joseph, to whom alone was reserved the happiness of inheriting all the benedictions of the other patriarchs, and of seeing them accomplished in that which raised thee to the dignity of father of the Messiah, in whom all nations were to be blessed; let all the patriarchs come now, and place on thy head a crown of glory as to their king: let all the other saints of the Old Testament come also and crown thee as their chief with as many stars as there are degrees of sanctity by which thou hast surpassed them, by uniting in thee and by perfecting all their virtues. Lastly, let all the saints of the New Testament, the apostles, the martyrs, the confessors, the virgins, come in their turn, and, with their palms mingled with lilies and roses, crown the head of the family of God, the first disciple of Jesus Christ, the first imitator of His divine examples, the first confidant of the hearts of Jesus and Mary, the first saint of the law of grace proclaimed thus by the Sacred Books. Be blessed, holy patriarch, by all the saints; but raised to the height of felicity, do not forget to let thy poor servant participate in some of the abundant benedictions which enrich thee in eternity. What I desire above all others is, that thou wouldst make the salutary fruits of the passion of my Saviour descend upon me. If I obtain these fruits of benediction upon earth, I hope to arrive at the enjoyment of the fruits of glory with which the elect are satiated in Heaven. Amen.
Jacob was great by the eminence of his virtues and piety; but how much greater was that of our holy patriarch Joseph! He was greater than Noah and the other patriarchs. He is blessed among all men, for the same reason that the Blessed Virgin is blessed among all women.
He excels all the other patriarchs and prophets by two privileges; namely, as spouse of Mary, and as father of Christ.
He is the first, in the law of grace, who suffered persecution for justice, so that the sword also pierced his soul.
Joseph was so much the more excellent as he belonged to a higher order.
Novena to St. Joseph – Fifth Day
St. Joseph, Model of Justice
Joseph, her spouse, was a just man. St. Matthew 1:19
He was a model of the justice one owes to God. He obeyed His commandments and inspirations in every thing. His will tended continually to the perfect accomplishment of the Divine will.
He was a model of the justice we owe our neighbor in our thoughts, words, and actions. Seeing the pregnancy of the Blessed Virgin, and not knowing the mystery, he judged as favorably as he could. Accordingly, not the least complaint escaped him against Herod, who sought the life of the Divine Infant.
He was a model of the justice we owe to ourselves. He never flattered his senses in any thing. He knew no other interest than that of perfectly imitating the Incarnate God. We may then consider him as the first disciple of Jesus Christ also as the first Christian.
Virtues to imitate in St. Joseph
The exact observation of the law of God, and a perfect docility to His inspirations.
The love of the neighbor, and the desire of assisting him In every thing.
Imitation of Jesus Christ, our model, in His mortified and laborious life.
I rejoice with thee, my glorious protector, at the sight of thy indefatigable ardor to advance in the path of perfection. Thou hast been just towards God in devoting thyself, with all thy mind, with all thy heart, and with all thy strength, to the accomplishment of His holy will. Thou wert just towards thy neighbor in loving all creatures in God, and God in all creatures; thou wert just towards thyself, in desiring only those advantages which concerned thy greatest perfection, and the exact imitation of the virtues of humility, obedience, poverty, mortification, and charity, which thou didst see practiced by Jesus and Mary. I beseech thee, Joseph, thrice just, to teach me to accomplish justice in every point; but I conjure thee, especially, by the plenitude of thy virtues, and by thy immense credit with God, obtain for me the grace of commencing to become a perfect Christian; that is to say, a true imitator of God in His poverty, in His humility, in His patience. I acknowledge I have been but little so till now, but I propose to be more so in future, by thy assistance and that of thy holy spouse. Amen.
Joseph was just in his words and actions, just in the accomplishment of the law, and according to the measure of grace.
He was so dead to the world and to the flesh, that he sighed only after heavenly things.
He lived content in poverty.