St Joseph, Ideal Earthly Father

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The WORD in other words (2022) by Fr. Glenn Paul Gomez, SVD — Christ the King Seminary, Quezon City

4th Sunday of Advent / A

Photo: St Joseph and the Child Jesus, Centre Theresianum de Kinshasa, Congo

Today is the fourth and the last Sunday of Advent. Next Sunday is Jesus’ birthday and a new season – Christmas Season – in our liturgical calendar!

Pope Francis declared last year as Year of St. Joseph and wrote an Apostolic Letter “Patris Corde” (With a Father’s Heart). It recalls the 150th anniversary of the declaration of St. Joseph as the Patron of the Universal Church.

On the 4th Sunday of Advent, the Gospel narrates how Joseph wanted to divorce Mary quietly, but an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream and changed his decision. He took Mary as his wife into his home.

This particular Gospel about Joseph enumerates his many good qualities. For Pope Francis, St Joseph embodies the ideal earthly father: humble, patient, loving, provider, protector… “the man who goes unnoticed, a daily, discreet and hidden presence” who played “an incomparable role in the history of salvation.”

I’ve been praying for the healing of the “macho image” of men, particularly the macho image of male Filipinos. As a Christian nation, Filipinos tolerate men with mistresses, vices, and other unethical behavior as leaders both in the church and government.

We continue asking the guidance of St. Joseph to help every male in the world, particularly Filipinos, to imitate him. This year 2022, I turned “double citizen” – Filipino citizen and Senior citizen! Yesterday, December 17, our SVD Handog Class 1988 celebrated our 34th priestly anniversary. Yesterday was also our Dad’s (Romulo I. Gomez, Sr.) 21st death anniversary.

We claim, in the powerful name of Jesus, the total healing of the “macho image” of men! Let’s ask the intercession of the Patron of the Universal Church, St. Joseph. Pope Francis composed a prayer addressed to him, and so we pray:

Hail, Guardian of the Redeemer,

Spouse of the Blessed Virgin Mary.

To you God entrusted his only Son;
in you Mary placed her trust;
with you Christ became man.

Blessed Joseph, to us too,
show yourself a father
and guide us in the path of life.

Obtain for us grace, mercy, and courage,

and defend us from every evil.


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