During the Advent and Christmas seasons, we tend think a great deal about Mary. Also, with feasts like the Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception and the Feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe she is very much on our mind. It's right to think about the Blessed Mother during this beautiful liturgical season. Obviously, Mary, the Mother of Jesus and the Mother of God, is the second most important person in the Christmas story. But let's not forget about St. Joseph, who played an absolutely essential role in the Infancy Narratives, and in the life of Christ.
Joseph tends to be the forgotten man of Advent and Christmas. He’s given no lines to speak in the whole New Testament, and we don’t even know what happened to him after Jesus reached adulthood. Unlike Mary, he’s not present at the Wedding Feast of Cana or the Crucifixion, so it seems likely he had already died. In his simple life in Nazareth Joseph did ordinary things: he works as a carpenter, he is a husband to Mary and a father to Jesus. Yet in those ordinary things he ends up doing something extraordinary. As the Jesuit theologian John Haughey said, he helps to fashion Jesus in to the instrument needed for the world’s salvation.
Maybe this week you could pray to Joseph and ask him to help you see the things in your daily life that seem ordinary to you, but are ways that you have of helping others, of loving others and of responding to the call of the young man whom Joseph helped to raise.