St. Joseph begins as an obscure Palestinian youth, when through the providence of God he meets Mary and realizes that he and she are to be husband and wife. Certainly he knows nothing of his future vocation. He is simply a good man, unaware no doubt even of the unfathomable riches of holiness already present in him; unaware, too, that from all eternity God had chosen him to be the husband of Mary, the woman among women, who was to lead all human creation to its king, the divine Lord, her Son.
This is the nobility of Joseph, as Joseph continues his life according to his role of faith. He loves Mary; he would love her as no other mere human could or did, in his vocation as her husband. The husband of Mary, in God’s providence, could hardly be one to love Mary except in the most perfect way. As for Jesus, how could Joseph have served and loved Him except the best way he could? If we see holiness in Joseph at all, we must discern that holiness adjusting itself to human limitations and seeking to find God’s will amid the dark uncertainties of everyday life, because such darkness did exist for Joseph, particularly in the special vocation which he alone shared with Mary. Father Francis L. Filas, S. J.