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Where did St. Joseph die?

DEATH OF SAINT JOSEPH

Lluís Ribes Mateu | Flickr CC BY-NC 2.0

Philip Kosloski - published on 03/17/24

While St. Joseph is one of the most important figures of Christianity, little is known about his life and death.

St. Joseph is widely known as the patron saint of a “happy death,” but do we even know where he died?

The Bible does not give us much information about St. Joseph, aside from a few verses that explain what he did in Jesus’ early childhood.

After Jesus’ childhood, it is not certain what happened to St. Joseph, or the precise date when he died.

Location of St. Joseph’s death

Most scholars believe that St. Joseph died before Jesus’ public ministry, as he is absent from all of the events that occur during the last three years of Jesus’ life on earth.

With this in mind, most scholars point to Nazareth as the location of St. Joseph’s death.

While the precise location is not known, there does exist a church in Nazareth dedicated to St. Joseph.

The Franciscans in the Holy Land describe the local traditions of Nazareth on their website:

In the 17th century, Father Francesco Quaresmi describes a place “that the locals call Joseph’s House and Workshop where, for a time, there was a beautiful church dedicated to Saint Joseph.” 

Furthermore, “The apocryphal ‘Story of Joseph the Carpenter’ narrates the death and interment of Jesus’ foster father, describing how Jesus himself helped and comforted him at the moment that he passed out of this life.

All of this places St. Joseph’s death in the family home in Nazareth, and possibly in the arms of the Blessed Virgin Mary and their son, Jesus.

His body is not located in any particular tomb, though there are some traditions that say he was “assumed” into Heaven, similar to the Blessed Virgin Mary.

Whether or not that actually happened is difficult to pinpoint, but many saints claim it is true.

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