In our last conference we began to understand the important role of Saint Joseph as the new Adam, the father of Jesus Ben Adam. We went on to boldly propose that the Woman of Apocalypse chapter 12, is in labor with the child of Joseph. This is not a conclusion that a child’s level of theology can grasp. Only a mature Church can understand and test the accuracy of this long and complex equation which began in the Garden of Eden and works its way through the centuries. It has taken us many conferences to go through the steps to reconstruct the ideal Garden scene.
Heretofore, we’ve been focusing on the unique person of Mary, but now we must look at her lawful, wedded spouse. Joseph, the son of King David dwells with his spouse in the Garden of Nazareth. We should stress the garden status of Nazareth as a parallel to the old Eden. Today it requires effort because we only know the modern Israel from two sets of images: either we are confronted with the bare rock foundations of former structures uncovered by archaeological digs, or we see the present desert-like, rain-starved topography of modern Israel. We have to pinch ourselves from time to time to remember that the Promised Land was one of the most luxurious and coveted places in the ancient world, hence it was involved in so many wars. It abounded in vegetation more than California or Florida. Jericho was the city of date palms. Figs and pomegranates were commonplace. When Joshua sent out spies to reconnoiter the Land of Promised, it required two men to carry a single cluster of grapes on a pole. That cluster became the symbol of Israel. Why is the land so depleted and undesirable today? When small flocks of sheep are handled by a single shepherd he is careful to move the sheep before they eat the vegetation down to the roots. Greedy nineteenth century sheep-grazing of enormous flocks with few shepherds led to the disaster of topsoil washing off the hills. The decrease in vegetation broke down the rain cycle and now the land is cultivated only with extreme measures of irrigation. Allow me to quote some travel memoirs of a certain Doctor Robinson in the mid 1800s which report the lush verdure, especially of Nazareth:
Being so sheltered by hills, Nazareth enjoys a mild atmosphere and climate. Hence all the fruits of the country–pomegranates, oranges, figs, olives–ripen early and attain a rare perfection. No thoroughfare invades the seclusion of Nazareth. The lines of travel . . . pass by. . .
[We see] the foliage of fig-trees and wild shrubs and the verdure of occasional fields of grain. . . Our familiar hollyhock is one of the bright flowers which grow wild there. The enclosed valley is peculiarly rich and well cultivated: it is filled with grain-fields, gardens, hedges of flowering cacti, and clusters of fruit-bearing trees. . .
A description of Nazareth would be incomplete without mention of the remarkable view . . . in the north are seen the ridges of Mount Lebanon and, high above all, the snowy top of Mount Hermon; in the west, Mount Carmel with glimpses of the Mediterranean, the bay and the city of Acre [that is, modern Haifa]; east and southeast are Mount Tabor and Mount Gilboa; and looking south, the plain of Esdraelon and the mountains of Samaria . . . It is unquestionably one of the most beautiful and sublime spectacles which earth has to show. . . . It is easy to believe that the Saviour . . . looked upon those glorious works of the Creator which so lift the soul upward to Him [Smith’s Bible Dictionary].
To start a new creation, God deliberately created Mary immaculate, in a state of grace, pre-redeemed, pre-baptized, and saw that she would be betrothed to a man whom he foreknew would fully cooperate. Mary’s Immaculate Conception was a precondition since the Original Eve was also immaculate. Her Son could not be conceived in sin, hence it’s an important dogma of the Catholic Church. Joseph did not need to be immaculately conceived since he would not be the physical father of Jesus. Nevertheless, he was Mary’s lawful husband when the Savior was conceived, so the Gospels are careful to testify that Joseph was a just man. Theologians down the centuries have proposed that it would have been proper, even necessary, for Joseph to be justified by some kind of baptismal grace, and to remain sinless, so that Jesus could be born of a couple as pure and immaculate as the Original First Parents.
As we reflected in the last conference, after the birth of their firstborn Son, Joseph and Mary, for the rest of their lives, abstained from conceiving more children. In their role as parents of a new creation, God wanted them to give spiritual rebirth into the one family of the fallen children of Eve through their royal adoption and incorporation into the Body of Christ. If they had raised up a line of brothers and sisters of Jesus that would have created a parallel half-race, distinctly separate and naturally superior in rank of royalty to the rest of the children of Eve. They would have been the perpetrators of schism. Hence the Catholic Church holds fast to the conviction of Mary’s perpetual virginity. She did not have intercourse with Joseph before or after the birth of Jesus [cf Catechism of the Catholic Church #496-511].
In the reconstructed Garden of Innocence, the Son of Adam walked with his parents several years, instructing them intimately in knowledge of the Trinity which Mary would pass on to the Apostles after his redemptive Passion. Jesus agonized in a Garden and was buried in a Garden, and in a Garden he rose from the dead. But that did not finish the task. The goal was not only to redeem individuals so they could enter heaven. The goal was to redeem Paradise Lost and recreate the Earth, that is, the adam. His disciples would carry it out under his heavenly leadership.
Truly, truly, I say to you, he who believes in me will also do the works that I do; and greater works than these will he do, because I go to the Father [Jn 14:12].
In my flesh I complete what is lacking in Christ’s tribulation for the sake of his body, that is, the Church [Col 1:24].
I, John, your brother and fellow partaker in the tribulation and kingdom and perseverance which are in Jesus . . . heard a voice . . . “Come up here, and I will show you what must take place after these things.” [Re 1:9].
By this we know love, that he laid down his life for us; and we ought to lay down our lives for the brethren [1Jo 3:16].
The Greek equivalent of adam occurs 67 times in the Apocalypse. The final Book of the Bible is all about obtaining dominion over the adam. It makes sense that we find in the final book of the Bible a pregnant woman and a serpent, and the woman is crowned. She is a gebirah, the mother of the king, about to give birth to the rest of the king’s offspring. Over the centuries many Protestant and Catholic commentators proposed that the Woman in the heavens is a symbol of the Church. Who can separate the Church from the Mother of the Church? Yes, we can identify the Woman as both Mary and the Church. The Church imitates her Spouse by undergoing a Passion and thus becoming fruitful in souls. However, a pregnant woman requires a spouse. Mary is not the spouse of her Son. That would be open incest. The role of Joseph must be recognized in this drama, even though he remains true to his Gospel portrait, a carpenter-man of works more than words.
Since the eighteen hundreds, in a direct parallel with Mary’s modern apparitions with messages for the world, Saint Joseph has grown exponentially in importance in the devotion of the faithful. By popular demand popes have bestowed upon him a surge of official titles raising him higher than all the Apostles, second only to his Spouse, the Blessed Virgin Mary.
Fr. Francis L. Filas, S.J in four massive tomes published between 1952 and 1969
Joseph and Jesus. A Theological Study of Their Relationship 1952
Joseph Most Just. Theological Questions About St. Joseph 1956
Joseph: the Man Closest to Jesus. The Complete Life, Theology and Devotional History of St. Joseph 1962.
St. Joseph After Vatican II. Conciliar Implications Regarding St. Joseph 1969.
documented a long history of individual and collective signatures being sent to the Holy See requesting privileges for Joseph. From 1815 the momentum kept gaining. The Fathers of Vatican I solemnly petitioned to make Joseph Patron of the universal church which Pope Pius IX did on the Feast of the Immaculate Conception, Dec. 8, 1870. But the Church wasn’t satisfied. More studies, more devotions, more books, more love for this saint. By the early 1960’s there was a world-coordinated effort to ask the favor of placing St. Joseph’s name among the saints listed in the Roman Canon (the First Eucharistic Prayer). It was hoped that the Pope would do this in 1970 on the centenary of his proclamation as Universal Patron. But Pope John XXIII delighted everyone by doing it in 1962. At the same time or shortly afterward, the same pontiff add St. Joseph’s name in the Divine Praises in the Rite of Benediction of the Blessed Sacrament. In that sublime prayer only the Jesus and Mary had been invoked by name. Now St. Joseph completes, as it were, the human Trinity, offering worship to the divine Trinity, in the name of the Church. On May 1st, 2013, feast of St. Joseph the Work, Pope Francis signed Paternas vices (Fatherly care) authorizing the inclusion of the name of Saint Joseph in Eucharistic Prayers II, III, and IV of the latest edition of the Roman Missal. The extreme dignity accorded to St. Joseph cannot be sufficiently estimated. In every liturgical inclusion, the name of Joseph is placed directly after the name of the Blessed Virgin, with the epithet “her Spouse.” His name is before St. Peter, even before St. John the Baptist, of whom Jesus declared that no man born of woman was greater. Yet Jesus declared that “he who is least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he” [Mt 11:11]. Indeed, Joseph was spiritually rebirthed from the greatest of women.
In a separate seminar I have been presenting synopses of Mary’s apparitions with messages for the world. To conclude this conference I would like to insert a sample of the work of the Holy Spirit who has been inciting the faithful to greater appreciation of St. Joseph in a manner parallel to the progress in the liturgical magisterium. All my citations will be from approved apparitions unless stated otherwise.
At Knock, Ireland
St. Joseph appeared in the trinitarian Apocalyptic tableau: a lamb, an altar, angels and three persons: St. John, the beloved son, Mary, the quasi-incarnation of the Holy Spirit, and St. Joseph, protecting Father
At Fatima, Portugal
During the great “Miracle of the Sun”, the children saw the Holy Family. St. Joseph as Father figure was holding the Child Jesus. Our Lady was dressed in white with a blue mantle. St. Joseph and the Child Jesus together blessed the world, tracing the Sign of the Cross with their hands.
At Betania, Venezuela
Maria Esperanza related in the third public Apparition, March 25, 1977
The Patriarch St. Joseph said, “With Jesus and Mary I will watch over this source of love, so this people may be saved, for the family will be the hope of a new world!”
At San Nicolas, Argentina
In the 1980s and 1990s, housewife Gladys Quiroga received messages from Mary and she often mentioned Joseph’s virtues
March 19 (St. Joseph’s Day) #828
Pray to Joseph on this day. Joseph, my husband . . . let himself be guided completely by God the Father’s will. He placed himself at God’s service with a ‘Yes’, full of faith and love.
At Akita, Japan
On May 1st, 197? Feast of Saint Joseph the Worker Sister Agnes’ guardian angel told her:
Today you have asked the protection of Saint Joseph . . . This prayer is very pleasing to Jesus and Mary; it will be heard. Saint Joseph will protect your work. . . . But it is rather a shame that there is no exterior sign here in honor of Saint Joseph. Ask him who directs you to do this when you can. [They quickly put a statue of Joseph in the chapel.]
Anne, the Lay Apostle [Ireland]
Anne, received a series of Messages from St. Joseph in 2004 for fathers of families. They have been published and are available for free on-line in Volume Six: Heaven Speaks to Families. A brief sample of St. Joseph’s messages:
Please consider that your first duty is to your family. Indeed, caring for your wife and children is your sacred duty, and all of heaven will help you to make this your priority.
Fr. Gobbi of the Marian Movement Priests [Italy]
Mary spoke often of Joseph’s importance in her life
279a-“In the garden of my Immaculate Heart, beloved sons, live the beautiful and precious hours of the holy night. Spend it in prayer, in silence, in the sweet company of myself and my spouse, Joseph. . . .d-Relive the industrious silence of my most chaste spouse, Joseph; his fatigue from conducting us down the long road [to Bethlehem], his persistence in looking for a house; his repeated patience with each refusal to open a door; his confidence as he led the way to a safe and protected place . . .
St. Joseph allegedly makes many appearances in the messages coming to the Maranatha Shrine and Miraculous Spring at Holy Love Ministries on property near Eaton Township in northern Ohio. As of yet there has been no formal investigation. Although they are not yet approved, pilgrims arrive by the thousands. Here are some tasty morsels:
August 1, 2010
The heart of every family must be Holy Love. The absence of Holy Love results in disunity, confusion and even apostasy. Holy Love fosters family prayer, faithfulness to the Commandments, and dedication to the truth.
December 26, 2010
Today I am addressing the family of mankind who, for the most part, has departed from the path of holiness. In Nazareth the Holy Virgin worked with Jesus and myself to be examples of love and holiness. Once again I am joining my Son, Jesus, in an effort to spread unity through Holy Love. . . .The heart of the world family must be converted to the truth.
September 4, 2011
Establish within your hearts, and then within your families, the domestic church.
September 2, 2012
St. Joseph is here and is dressed in purple [the color of royalty]. He says:
Praise be to Jesus. I come to remind . . . that not to decide is to decide. If you do not choose unity in your family, you choose division. If you do not choose life in the womb, you choose abortion.
November 6, 2016
Parents should make a point of discussing political issues in their home as their children mature. This way they are educated in good versus evil.
May 1, 2016
Families entrusted to my care receive my Fatherly Protection against the evils of the day. I will warn their hearts of potential threats of evil, as I am the Terror of Demons.”
But of course I’m saving the biggest and best for last! The most extensive of approved revelations of St. Joseph have been granted to Sr. Mildred, a religious in the United States, through Mary’s messages under the title of Our Lady of America.
In early October, 1956, St. Joseph said
My heart suffered with the Hearts of Jesus and Mary. Mine was a silent suffering, for it was my special vocation to hide and shield, as long as God willed, the Virgin Mother and Son from the malice and hatred of men. The most painful of my sorrows was that I knew beforehand of their passion, yet would not be there to console them. Their future suffering was ever present to me and became my daily cross. I became, in union with my holy spouse, co-redemptor of the human race. Through compassion for the sufferings of Jesus and Mary I cooperated, as no other, in the salvation of the world.
On March 18, 1958
I bring to souls the purity of my life and the obedience that crowned it. All fatherhood is blessed in me whom the Eternal Father chose as His representative on earth, the virgin-father of his own divine Son. Through me the heavenly Father has blessed all fatherhood, and through me He continues and will continue to do so till the end of time. My spiritual fatherhood extends to all God’s children, and together with my virgin spouse I watch over them with great love and solicitude. . . . Fatherhood is from God, and it must take once again its rightful place among men.
Sister Mildred saw his most pure heart, lying on a cross. At the top of the heart, flames poured out, and in the flames a pure white lily. St. Joseph said to her:
Behold this pure heart so pleasing to Him who made it. The cross, my little one, upon which my heart rests is the cross of the passion, which was ever present before me, causing me intense suffering. I desire souls to come to my heart that they may learn true union with the divine will.
On March 19, 1958, St. Joseph said
I desire a day to be set aside to honor my fatherhood. I was king in the little home of Nazareth, for I sheltered within it the Prince of Peace and the Queen of Heaven. To me they looked for protection and sustenance, and I did not fail them. I received from them the deepest love and reverence, for in me they saw Him whose place I took over them.
So the head of the family must be loved, obeyed, and respected, and in return be a true father and protector to those under his care. In honoring in a special way my fatherhood, you also honor Jesus and Mary. The divine Trinity has placed into our keeping the peace of the world. The imitation of the Holy Family, my child, of the virtues we practiced in our little home at Nazareth is the way for all souls to that peace which comes from God alone and which none other can give.
Then suddenly, as he ceased speaking, St. Joseph raised his hands in a position similar to the priest during the celebration of Holy Mass, only they extended upward somewhat more. . . She saw his most pure heart . . Two angels stood at either side, facing him, and each carried a satin pillow, one bearing a gold crown, the other, a gold scepter. Then she
heard these words which are a quotation from the book of Esther
“Thus should he be honored whom the King desires to honor.” [Est 6:11]
Afterward St. Joseph said he explained that he was protector of the Pope as well of the Church:
As God chose me to be the special guardian of His Son, so has He chosen me as the special guardian of him who in Christ’s Name is head of the Mystical Body of that same Son on earth. . . During the war [WW II], it was I who saved him from death at the hands of his enemies. . . .
On March 30, 1958
I am the protector of the Church and the home, as I was the protector of Christ and his Mother while I lived upon earth. Jesus and Mary desire that my pure heart, so long hidden and unknown, be now honored in a special way. Let my children honor my most pure heart in a special manner on the First Wednesday of the month by reciting the Joyful Mysteries of the rosary in memory of my life with Jesus and Mary and the love I bore them, the sorrow I suffered with them. Let them receive Holy Communion in union with the love with which I received the Savior for the first time and each time I held Him in my arms. Those who honor me in this way will be consoled by my presence at their death, and I myself will conduct them safely into the presence of Jesus and Mary.
It’s very important that we are precise with our theology. No approved private revelation has ever shown the three hearts of Jesus, Mary and Joseph together, as if they are on a par. Approved revelations give various representations of the Hearts of Jesus and Mary joined together.
• St. Catherine Labouré saw an image of the Miraculous Medal. The hearts of Jesus and Mary were portrayed as wounded, next to one another on either side of a cross that surmounts the letter M.
• Berthe Petite saw the two hearts overlapping one another and pierced by a single sword thrust.
• Maureen Sweeney of the above-mentioned Holy Love shrine promotes a special chaplet of the two hearts. In her visions Jesus’ heart is large, and Mary’s heart is smaller and superimposed over it to symbolize Mary’s union as Co-Redeemer.
There may be others that are slipping my mind at the moment.
–Joseph plays an important background role but no one is advocating devotion to the “Three Sacred Hearts” except the schismatic groups coming of Itapiranga, Brazil. Websites boast that these apparitions are approved by the bishop, but on further investigation, this bishop and this group are separated from the Catholic Church. Please disregard anything that comes from these people who evidently do not enjoy the state of grace and are thus subject to any variety of messages from angelic deceivers.
I hope you leave this evening with great joy in your heart in the deeper realization of the zealous protector of families, nations and the Church that we have in the person of Saint Joseph.