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The Seven Sorrow and Joys of St. Joseph

Seven Sundays Devotion to St. Joseph
January 31, 2021

Some of the jumping-off points for blog posts come from my Parish Bulletin from Holy Cross Hungarian Roman Catholic Church. Today, as I was leafing through it, I noticed a very predominant Prayer to Saint Joseph. My curiosity was piqued, so I began a little Google Search. Lo and Behold, today, Sunday, January 31 marks the beginning of a relatively unknown devotion that honors St. Joseph’s joys and sorrows. Throughout my reading, it was noted that this year, the Year of St. Joseph, is a good time for us to grow in friendship with St. Joseph, Jesus’ father on earth.

Maybe we find a reference to St. Joseph in this week’s bulletin because my pastor is a Franciscan, and the story associated with the praying of the Seven Sorrows and Joys of St. Joseph, or the Seven Sundays devotion, is about two Franciscan monks who were shipwrecked and thought to be lost at sea, and miraculously brought to shore by an apparition calling himself Joseph.

In any event, the Seven Sundays Devotion begins on the seventh Sunday before March 19, the Solemnity of St. Joseph. Through the seven sorrows and joys, we experience what St. Joseph experienced as the husband of the Mother of God, the faithful guardian of Christ, and the head of the holy family. While the devotion may be practiced anytime during the year and the praying the Sorrow and Joys of St. Joseph are usually said on Wednesday (the Church’s special day to look to St. Joseph), this Sunday, January 31, in the year dedicated to St. Joseph, is a perfect place to start, because the Seventh Sunday is March 14, just days before St. Joseph’s feast on March 19.

 On this first Sunday in the Seven Sunday Devotion to St. Joseph,

\Let us Pray:

Glorious Saint Joseph,
pattern of all who are devoted to toil,
obtain for me the grace to toil in the spirit of penance,
in order thereby to atone for my many sins;
to toil conscientiously,
putting devotion to duty before my own inclinations;
to labor with thankfulness and joy,
deeming it an honor to employ and to develop,
by my labor, the gifts that I have received from
Almight God;
to work with order, peace, moderation, and patience,
without ever shrinking from weariness and difficulties;
to work about all with a pure intention
and with detachment from self,
having always before my eyes the hour of death
and the accounting which I must then render
of time ill-spent,
of talents employed,
of good undone,
and of my empty pride in success,
which is so fatal to the work of God.
All for Jesus, all through Mary,
all in imitation of thee, O Patriarch Joseph!
This shall be my motto in life and in death,
Amen.

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