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Tuesday, May 1, 2007

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St. Joseph the Worker

Genesis 1:26—2:3 or
Colossians 3:14-15, 17, 23-24
Psalm 90
Matthew 13:54-58

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worship while you work

"Be slaves of Christ, the Lord." —Colossians 3:24

Joseph is the man and model of faith, and the patron of workers. Jesus put faith and work together when He said: "This is the work of God: have faith in the One Whom He sent" (Jn 6:29).

Our work is to have faith in the Lord. We work not in place of faith but because of faith. We work not to make things happen but in thanksgiving that Jesus the Worker has finished the work of salvation through His death and resurrection (Jn 19:30).

Because our work is an act of faith, it is not slavery or drudgery but thanksgiving and worship. Whatever we do, we work at it with our whole being. We do it for the Lord rather than for men (Col 3:23).

This picture of work may seem to apply only to ideal situations. However, Joseph the Worker showed we can worship while we work no matter how difficult our jobs. According to the standards of his time, Joseph did not have a good job. The fact that Jesus was the carpenter's Son was an argument used to prevent people from believing in Him (Mt 13:55). Nevertheless, the Holy Spirit has revealed to the Church that Joseph worked and worshipped in Spirit and in truth (Jn 4:24).

Prayer:  Father, during this Easter season raise my work from the dead. Saint Joseph, the Worker, pray for us.

Promise:  "God blessed them, saying: 'Be fertile and multiply; fill the earth and subdue it.' " —Gn 1:28

Praise:  Wherever God placed him, from Egypt to Nazareth, St. Joseph worked to protect and provide for the Son and mother of God.

Reference:  (For a related teaching, order our tape Hold Fast to the Faith on audio AV 71-1 or video V-71.)

Rescript:  †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, October 16, 2006

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