May St. Joseph be these three things for dads, so they can live their fatherhood well.
Just one verse each day.
On March 19, many countries of Catholic heritage, including Italy, celebrate Fathers Day, as it is the feast of St. Joseph.
Pope Francis led those in St. Peter’s Square on Sunday in an “Our Father” prayer for fathers.
“And today, we extend best wishes to all fathers!” he said.
He offered a prayer that fathers can find in St. Joseph three things that will help them to be good dads:
May they find in Saint Joseph a model, support, and consolation to live their fatherhood well.
Model, support, consolation
Even in a brief greeting such as this, it’s interesting to think of the three aspects Pope Francis chose.
While it’s true that the Holy Family is our model of family life on earth, it’s consoling to remember that they are not simply at a distance, telling us what to do. Instead, we might think of how Joseph taught Jesus things as a small child, putting his small hands in his and teaching him how to do his work. They are intercessors of graces that enable us to follow them as models.
The Pope thinks often of St. Joseph as a support, as seen in this general audience from his series of catecheses that he dedicated to him. He said:
Everyone can find in Saint Joseph, the man who goes unnoticed, the man of daily presence, of discreet and hidden presence, an intercessor, a support and a guide in times of difficulty.
And consolation? Of course every parent realizes that part of raising kids is needing consolation at times.
St. Joseph experienced this too, as the Pope has explained.
Often in life, things happen whose meaning we do not understand. Our first reaction is frequently one of disappointment and rebellion. Joseph set aside his own ideas in order to accept the course of events and, mysterious as they seemed, to embrace them, take responsibility for them and make them part of his own history.
[This article was updated after publication]