Father Hardon on St. Joseph: the Secret of True Love

On this solemn feast of St. Joseph, it is good to have a reminder of just who the saint really is. What follows is a short snippet from a lecture by Fr. John Hardon:

Saint Joseph deserves our admiration for his other virtues, but, he is to be especially imitated in his love for Jesus and Mary. He was placed into their lives by an all-wise Providence and lived up to God’s expectations by giving them his deepest attention and care. What most bears emphasis is not so much that Jesus and Mary were physically so close to Saint Joseph. He was in their company day after day for many years. It was rather that Joseph put his love into practice.

Joseph put his love to work. He did not merely tell Jesus and Mary that he loved them. He acted out his love. He lived it.

That is the secret of true love. We are as truly devoted to Christ and His Mother as we do what we know they want us to do. And what is that? It is to see God’s providence in everything that enters our lives:

  • the disappointments and failures
  • the unexpected turn of events
  • the frustrating delays
  • the unwanted demands on our time
  • the strange behavior of some people
  • the mysterious silence of God who often hides the purpose He has and yet tells us, through people—that is the key, through people—what He wants us to do.

Saint Joseph is surely worth studying and invoking to help us love Jesus and Mary as he loved them. So we should pray:

Saint Joseph, foster father of Jesus and protector of the Virgin Mary, teach us the hardest lesson we have to learn in life; to love as you loved, by putting our affections to use, and by acting on the sentiments we so often express in our prayers. Teach us to understand what Mary meant when she said, “Be it done to me according to your will.” And what Jesus meant when He said, “If you love me, keep my commandments.”


Vizier of Heaven, (c)

This article, Father Hardon on St. Joseph: the Secret of True Love is a post from The Bellarmine Forum.
Do not repost the entire article without written permission. Reasonable excerpts may be reposted so long as it is linked to this page.

John B. Manos

John B. Manos, Esq. is an attorney and chemical engineer. He has a dog, Fyo, and likes photography, astronomy, and dusty old books published by Benziger Brothers. He is the President of the Bellarmine Forum.
  • Anything by Fr. John Hardon is well worth reading. Intercede for us, St. Joseph!

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