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For protection and peace: St. Joseph novena (Day 3)

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Kathleen N. Hattrup - published on 03/12/22

Take under your protection the serious and troubling situations that I commend to you ...

I would like us to pause to reflect on a detail of this story recounted in the Gospel that is often overlooked. Mary and Joseph were engaged to each other. They had probably cultivated dreams and expectations regarding their life and their future. Out of the blue, God seems to have inserted himself into their lives and, even if at first it was difficult for them, both of them opened their hearts wide to the reality that was placed before them.

Dear brothers and dear sisters, our lives are very often not what we imagine them to be. Especially in loving and affectionate relationships, it is difficult to move from the logic of falling in love to the logic of a mature love. We need to move from infatuation to mature love. You newlyweds, think about this. The first phase is always marked by a certain enchantment that makes us live immersed in the imaginary that is often not based on reality and facts – the falling in love phase. But precisely when falling in love with its expectations seems to come to an end, that is where true love begins or true love enters in there.

In fact, to love is not the pretension that the other person, or life, should correspond to our imagination. Rather, it means to choose in full freedom to take responsibility for one’s life as it comes.

This is why Joseph gives us an important lesson. He chooses Mary with “his eyes open.” We can say “with all the risks.” … Joseph’s risk gives us this lesson: to take life as it comes. Has God intervened there? I accept it.

~ Pope Francis, December 1, 2021

Novena prayer:

Glorious Patriarch Saint Joseph, whose power makes the impossible possible, come to my aid in these times of anguish and difficulty. Take under your protection the serious and troubling situations that I commend to you, that they may have a happy outcome. 

My beloved father, all my trust is in you. Let it not be said that I invoked you in vain, and since you can do everything with Jesus and Mary, show me that your goodness is as great as your power. Amen.

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