Daily Devotions to Saint Joseph
by St. Alphonsus Liguori
The Prayer To Be Said Every Day
Reflections For Each Day:
Prayer To Be Said Every Day After Each Day's
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Most holy patriarch, St. Joseph, I rejoice at the
great dignity to which thou hast been raised in being made foster
father of the Son of God, endowed with authority to command Him
Whom Heaven and earth obey.
My holy patron, since Jesus Himself respected and served thee
as His father, I, too, wish to enroll myself in thy service. I
choose thee, after Mary, for my principal advocate and protector.
I promise to honor thee every day with some special devotion,
and each day I will place myself under thy protection.
As thou didst enjoy the sweet company of Jesus and Mary during
thy life on earth, grant that Imay ever live close to them and
never be separated from God by losing His grace. And as thou wert
assisted by Jesus and Mary at the hour of thy death, so grant
me protection at the hour of my death, that, dying in thy presence
and that of Jesus and Mary, I may one day go to thank thee in
Paradise, and in thy company praise and love God for all eternity.
St. Joseph, patron of the universal Church, protect
us. Protect our Holy Father, the Pope, and our Mother, Holy Church.
God, because of the great love He bears us, and His great desire
to see us saved, has given us among other means of salvation the
practice of devotion to the Saints. It is His will that they,
who are His friends, should intercede for us, and by their merits
and prayers obtain graces for us which we ourselves do not deserve.
But everyone must know that, after the Mother of God, St. Joseph
is, of all the Saints, the one dearest to God. He has, therefore,
great power with Him and can obtain graces for His devout clients.
Let us then frequently say:
St. Joseph, give me the greatest confidence in thy powerful intercession.
We should, indeed, honor St. Joseph, since the Son of God Himself
was graciously pleased to honor him by calling him father. "Christ,"
says Origen, "gave to Joseph the honor due to a parent."
The Holy Scriptures speak of him as the father of Jesus. "His
father and mother were marveling at the things spoken concerning
Him" (Luke 2:33). Mary also used this name: "in sorrow
thy father and I have been seeking thee" (Luke 2:48 ). If,
then, the King of Kings was pleased to raise Joseph to so high
a dignity, it is right and obligatory on our part to endeavor
to honor him as much as we can.
St. Joseph, I consecrate myself to thy service forever. Protect
me all the days of my life.
The example of Jesus Christ, Who wished to honor St. Joseph so
much, and to be subject to him on earth, ought to inflame all
with a fervent devotion toward this great Saint. Since the Eternal
Father shared His Own authority with St. Joseph, Jesus always
regarded him as a father, and respected and obeyed him for thirty
years. St. Luke says He "was subject to them" (Luke
2:51). These words mean that during all this time the sole occupation
of the Redeemer was to obey Mary and Joseph. To St. Joseph, as
head of the little family, belonged the office of commanding,
and to Jesus as a subject, the duty of obedience. Hence, a learned
author has justly said: "Men should pay great honor to him
whom the King of Kings wished to raise to such a height."
St. Joseph, by the obedience which Jesus rendered to thee, make
me always obedient to the will of God.
St. Bernardine of Siena says that we should be persuaded that
Our Lord, Who respected St. Joseph on earth as His father, will
refuse Him nothing in Heaven; but on the contrary, will most abundantly
grant His petitions. Jesus Himself advised St. Margaret of Cortona
to cherish a special devotion to St. Joseph, and never to allow
a day to pass without rendering some homage to him as His foster
father. Let us not, then, fail to recommend ourselves each day
to St. Joseph and to ask him for graces.
St. Joseph, make me faithful in invoking thee daily.
All the faithful should be devoted to St. Joseph in order to
obtain the grace of a good death, and this for three reasons.
1. Because Jesus Christ loved him not only as a friend, but as
a father, and, therefore, his intercession is more powerful than
that of the other Saints. 2. Because Our Lord, in return for having
saved Him from Herod, has given St. Joseph the special privilege
of protecting the dying against the snares of the devil. 3. Because
St. Joseph, who died in the company of Jesus and Mary, is the
model of a holy death and can obtain this grace for his clients.
St. Joseph, obtain for me that, like thee, I may die in the arms
of Jesus and Mary.
According to St. John Damascene: "God gave St. Joseph the
love, the care, and the authority of a father over Jesus. He gave
him the affection of a father that he might guard Him with great
love; the solicitude of a father, that he might watch over Him
with care; and the authority of a father that he might feel sure
that he would be obeyed in all that he arranged concerning this
St. Joseph, be always a father to us; and grant that we may be
always thy faithful children.
When God, destines anyone for a particular office, He gives him
the graces that fit him for it. Therefore, since God chose St.
Joseph to fill the office of father over the person of the Incarnate
Word, we must certainly believe that he conferred upon him all
the sanctity which belonged to such an office. Gerson says that
among other privileges Joseph had three which were special to
him. 1. That he was sanctified in his mother's womb, as ere Jeremias
and St. John the Baptist. 2. That he was at the same time confirmed
in grace. 3. That he was always exempt from the inclinations of
concupiscence-----a privilege with which St. Joseph by the merit
of his purity, favors his devout clients by delivering them from
St. Joseph, shining light of chastity, preserve the angelic virtue
In the Gospels St. Joseph is called "just." What is
meant by a just man? St. Peter Chrysologus says: "It means
a perfect man-----one who possesses all virtues." Joseph
was already holy before his marriage; but how much must his sanctity
have increased after his union with the Blessed Virgin? The example
of his holy spouse sufficed to sanctify him; and since Mary is
the dispenser of all the graces which God grants to men, in what
profusion must she not have showered them down upon her spouse,
who she loved so much and by whom she was so tenderly loved!
St. Joseph, increase my devotion to Mary.
The two disciples, going to Emmaus were inflamed with Divine
love by the few moments which they spent in company with our Savior,
and by His words. What flames of holy love must not, then, have
been enkindled in the heart of St. Joseph, who for thirty years
conversed with Jesus Christ, and listened to His words of eternal
life; who observed the perfect example which Jesus gave of humility
and patience, and saw the promptness with which He obeyed and
helped him in his labors, and all that was needed for the household!
St. Joseph, inflame us with the love of Jesus.
St. Paul writes that in the next life Jesus Christ "will
render to every man according to His works" (Rom. 2:6). What
great glory must we not suppose that He has bestowed upon St.
Joseph, who served and loved Him so much while He lived on earth!
Our Lord has promised a reward to him who gives a cup of cold
water to the poor in His name. What, then, must be the reward
of St. Joseph, who can say to Jesus Christ: "I not only provided
Thee with food, with a dwelling, and with clothes, but I saved
Thee from death, delivering Thee from the hands of Herod."
St. Joseph, increase our zeal for growing in holiness by the
hope of eternal reward.
We must believe that the life of St. Joseph, spent in the presence
of Jesus and Mary, was a continual prayer, abounding in acts of
faith, confidence, love, resignation, and oblation. Since, then,
the reward of the Saints corresponds to their merits during life,
consider how great must be the glory of St. Joseph in Heaven.
St. Augustine compares the other Saints to the stars, but St.
Joseph to the sun.
It is, then, very reasonable to suppose that St. Joseph, after
Mary, surpasses all the other Saints in merit and glory. The Venerable
Bernardine de Bustis says that when St. Joseph asks any grace
for those who are devoted to him, his prayers have in a certain
manner the force of a command with Jesus and Mary.
St. Joseph, obtain for us a great spirit of prayer.
To prove the power which St. Joseph possesses in Paradise, St.
Bernardine of Siena writes thus: "We cannot doubt that Christ
accords to St. Joseph, now that he is in Heaven, even more perfectly
the respect and reverence which He paid to him on earth. Our Lord,
Who on earth revered St. Joseph as His father, will certainly
deny him nothing that he asks in Heaven." Let us then say
to him with confidence:
St. Joseph, powerful protector of souls, keep us from all sin.
Oh great St. Joseph, since God has served thee, I also wish to
enroll myself in thy service. I wish henceforth to serve thee,
to honor and love thee. Take me under thy protection and dispose
of me as thou pleasest. My holy St. Joseph, pray to Jesus for
me. Having obeyed all thy commands on earth, He will certainly
never refuse anything thou doth ask Him. Tell Him to pardon me
the offenses that I have committed against Him. Tell Him to detach
me from creatures and from myself. Ask Him to inflame me with
His holy love.
St. Joseph, watch over us, thy children.
Most holy patriarch, now that thou art on a lofty throne in Heaven
near thy beloved Jesus, Who was subject to thee on earth, have
pity on me, who am exposed to the attacks of so many enemies,
to the evil spirits, and the passions that continually strive
to rob me of the grace of God. Through the grace given to thee
on earth of enjoying the continual society of Jesus and Mary,
obtain for me the grace of living during the remaining days of
my life united to God, by resisting the attacks of Hell. Grant,
too, that I may die with the love of Jesus and Mary in my heart
so that I may be able one day to enjoy with thee their company
in the kingdom of Heaven.
St. Joseph, grant me a horror of sin and the grace to conquer
St. Bernard, speaking of St. Joseph's power of dispensing graces
to his devout servants, makes use of the following remarkable
words: "To some of the Saints power is granted to succor
us in particular necessities; but to St. Joseph power is granted
to succor in all necessities, and to defend all those who, with
devotion have recourse to him." Let us then often say to
St. Joseph, help us when we are in need.
St. Teresa says: "I do not remember to have asked any favor
from St. Joseph which he did not grant. An account of the many
graces which God has bestowed upon me, and of the dangers, corporal
and spiritual, from which He has delivered me through this Saint
would excite wonder. The Lord appears to have given power to the
other Saints to assist us in a single necessity; but experience
shows that St. Joseph gives aid in all. The Lord gives us to understand
that, as He was to be subject to St. Joseph on earth, so in Heaven
He does whatever the Saint asks."
St. Joseph, obtain for me the grace of perseverance in prayer.
St. Teresa also writes: "I would wish to persuade all the
world to be devoted to St. Joseph, because I have long experience
of the great favors which he obtains from God. I have never known
any soul especially devoted to him that did not always advance
in virtue. I ask, for God's sake, that they who do not believe
me will at least make a trial of this devotion. I cannot believe
that favors are not grant ed to St. Joseph in return for the help
which he gave on earth to Jesus and Mary."
St. Joseph, patron of the interior life, lead me to that perfection
which God requires of me.
Let us ask St. Joseph for the grace to love our Lord Jesus Christ.
This is the particular grace which St. Joseph obtains for those
who are devout to him-----a tender love toward the Incarnate Word.
The Saint merited the power to bestow this grace upon his servants
by the great love which he himself bore toward Jesus while he
lived on earth.
St. Joseph, make me love Jesus with all my heart.
When Jesus lived in this world in the house of St. Joseph, could
a sinner who desired to obtain forgiveness from Our Lord have
found a more efficacious means of obtaining pardon than through
St. Joseph? If, then, we desire to receive the forgiveness of
our sins, let us have recourse to St. Joseph who, now that he
is in Heaven, is more loved by Jesus Christ than he was loved
by Him on earth.
St. Joseph, obtain from Jesus the pardon of my sins.
"And Joseph also went from Galilee out of the town of Nazareth
into Judea to the town of David, which is called Bethlehem"
(Luke 2:4). In response to the decree of Caesar Augustus, St.
Joseph made the long journey across the hills from Galilee to
Bethlehem with Mary, who bore beneath her heart the Incarnate
Son of God. What sweet conversations must Mary and Joseph have
held on this journey on the mercy of God in sending His Son into
the world to redeem the human race, and on the love of this Son
in coming into this valley of tears in order to atone by His suffering
and death for the sins of men!
St. Joseph, I wish to belong entirely to thee, so that through
thee I may belong entirely to Jesus and Mary.
"And it came to pass while they were there, that the days
for her to be delivered were fulfilled. And she brought forth
her firstborn son, and wrapped him in swaddling clothes, and laid
him in a manger, because there was no room for them in the inn"
(Luke 2:6-7). How great must have been the sorrow of St. Joseph
when he could find no shelter for Mary on the night of the birth
of the Divine Word, and was obliged to bring her to a stable!
How his heart must have been pierced with anguish to see his holy
spouse, who was pregnant, and near the time of childbirth, trembling
with cold in that damp cave, which was open on every side.
Dear St. Joseph, through the pain which thou didst feel in seeing
the Divine Word born in a stable, so poor, without fire, without
clothes, and in hearing the cries caused by the cold which afflicted
Him, I pray thee to obtain for me a true sorrow for my sins, by
which I have drawn tears from Jesus.
St. Joseph, penetrate my heart with contrition and obtain for
me the grace never to sin again.
"And she brought forth her firstborn son, and wrapped him
in swaddling clothes, and laid him in a manger" (Luke 2 :
7). How great must have been the joy of St. Joseph when he heard
Mary calling him and saying "Joseph, come, and adore our
infant God, Who is just born in this cave. Behold how beautiful
He is. Look at the King of the world in this manger, on this straw.
See how He, Who makes the seraphs burn with love, trembles with
cold. Behold how He Who is the joy of paradise weeps!" Dear
St. Joseph, through the joy which thou didst receive at the first
sight of the infant Jesus in the crib, so beautiful and lovely
that thy heart began from that moment to beat with love for Him
alone, obtain for me also the grace to love Jesus with an ardent
love on earth so that I may one day go to enjoy Him in Heaven.
St. Joseph, share with me a little of the burning love that thou
didst bear to Jesus.
"Glory to God in the highest and on earth peace among men
of good will" (Luke 2: 14). Consider how great was the love
and tenderness of St. Joseph when he beheld with his own eyes
the Son of God become an infant; when he heard the Angels singing
around their newborn Lord, and saw the stable filled with light.
Kneeling down and weeping with love and compassion, Joseph said:
"I adore Thee, yes I adore Thee, my Lord and my God. How
great is my happiness to be the first, after Mary, to see Thou
born, and to know that in this world Thou wisheth to be called
and reputed my Son! Allow me, then, also to call Thee my Son,
and to say: My God and my Son, to Thee I consecrate my whole being.
My life shall be no longer mine, but shall be Thine without reserve!"
St. Joseph, grant that I may spend my life, like thee, in the
service of God.
"An Angel of the Lord appeared in a dream to Joseph, saying,
Arise, and take the child and His mother and flee into Egypt"
(Matt. 2:13). Consider the ready obedience of St. Joseph, who
raised no doubts about the time of the journey, nor about the
manner of traveling, nor about the place in Egypt in which they
were to stay, but immediately prepared to set out. He instantly
makes known to Mary the command of the Angel, and on the same
night sets out without guide on a journey of 400 miles through
mountains, across rugged roads and deserts.
My holy protector, obtain for me the grace of perfect obedience
to the Divine will.
How much St. Joseph must have suffered on the journey into Egypt
in seeing the sufferings of Jesus and Mary! Their food must have
been a piece of hard bread. They could have slept only in some
poor hut, or in the open air. Joseph was indeed conformed in all
things to the will of the Eternal Father, but his tender and loving
heart could not but feel pain in seeing the Son of God trembling
and weeping from cold and the other hardships which He experienced.
St. Joseph, obtain for me the grace that in my journey to eternity
I may never lose the company of Jesus and Mary.
"The boy Jesus remained in Jerusalem, and His parents did
not know it" (Luke 2:43). How great was the pain of St. Joseph
when Jesus was lost in the temple! Joseph was accustomed to the
enjoyment of the sweet presence of his beloved Savior. What, then,
must have been his sorrow when he was deprived of it for three
days, without knowing whether he should evermore find Jesus, and
most painful of all, without knowing why he had lost Him. How
great, on the other hand, was Joseph's joy when he found Jesus
and realized that the absence of the Child did not arise from
any neglect on his part, but from a zeal for the glory of the
St. Joseph, through the merits of the pains which thou didst
suffer at losing Jesus, obtain for me tears to weep always for
"He went down with them and came to Nazareth, and was subject
to them" (Luke 2:51). Reflect on the holy life which Joseph
led in the company of Jesus and Mary. In that family there was
no business except that which tended to the greater glory of God;
there were no thoughts or desires except the thought and desire
of pleasing God; there were no discourses except on the love which
men owe to God, and which God has shown to men, especially in
sending His only begotten Son into the world to suffer and to
end His life in a sea of sorrows and insults for the salvation
St. Joseph, through the tears which thou didst shed in contemplating
the future passion of Jesus, obtain for me a continual remembrance
of the suffering of my Redeemer.
Consider the love which St. Joseph bore to Mary, his holy spouse.
She was the most beautiful of all women. She was more humble,
more meek, more pure, more obedient, more inflamed with the love
of God, than all the Angels and than all men that have been or
shall be created. Hence, she merited all his love. Add to this
his realization of the love that she bore for him, and the fact
that God had chosen her as His beloved Mother.
St. Joseph, obtain for me a great love for Mary, thy most holy
Consider the love which Joseph bore to Jesus. This love was not
purely human. like the love of other fathers, but superhuman;
for he loved Jesus not only as his son but also as his God. Joseph
knew from the Angel that his child was the Divine Word Who had
become man to save mankind. He realized, too, that he himself
had been chosen from among all men to be the protector and guardian
of this Divine Infant. What a flame of holy love must, then, have
been enkindled in the heart of Joseph by reflecting on all these
things, and by the sight of his Lord obeying him like a little
boy, opening and closing the door, helping him to saw or to plane,
gathering fragments of wood, or sweeping the house!
St. Joseph, remove from my heart all that could be an obstacle
to the love of God.
"Precious in the eyes of the Lord is the death of His faithful
ones" (Ps. 115:6). After having faithfully served Jesus and
Mary, St. Joseph reached the end of his life in the house at Nazareth.
There, surrounded by Angels, assisted by Jesus Christ the King
of Angels, and by Mary, his spouse, who placed themselves at each
side of his poor bed, filled with the peace of Paradise, he departed
from this miserable life. Who shall ever be able to understand
the sweetness, the consolation, the blessed hope, the acts of
resignation, the flames of charity which the words of eternal
life coming alternately from the lips of Jesus and Mary, breathed
into the soul of Joseph at the end of his life?
St. Joseph, grant me peace and resignation to God's will at the
hour of my death.
Great, indeed, will be the comfort of those, who, at the hour
of death shall be protected by St. Joseph. For this great Saint
has received from God power to command the devils and to drive
them away, less they tempt his servants in their dying moments.
Happy is the soul that shall be assisted by this great advocate,
who, on account of having died with the assistance of Jesus and
Mary, and because of having preserved the infant Jesus from the
danger of death by his flight into Egypt, has received the privilege
of being the patron of a good death, and of delivering his clients
from the danger of eternal death.
St. Joseph, defend me from the attacks of the devils at the last
moment of my life.
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