A Devotion in Honour of the Seven Sorrows and Joys of Saint Joseph
First Sorrow and Joy
O most pure Spouse of Mary, glorious St. Joseph, as the affliction and anguish of thy heart was exceedingly great in thy perplexity, whether thou shouldst abandon thy most unspotted Spouse, so was the joy unspeakable when, by an Angel, the sublime Mystery of the Incarnation was revealed to thee. By this sorrow and joy, we beseech thee that now, and in our last agony, thou mayest comfort our souls by the joy of a good life and a holy death, like thine in the society of Jesus and Mary.
Second Sorrow and Joy
O most happy Patriarch, glorious saint Joseph, who wast to fulfill the duty of foster father to the Incarnate Word, thy sorrow in beholding the poverty of the Child Jesus in His birth, was changed immediately into heavenly delight, by hearing the angelic harmony, and by beholding the glory of that most resplendent night. By this thy sorrow and joy, we beseech Thee, that, after the passage of this life, we may in the next hear the angelic praises and enjoy the brightness of eternal glory.
Third Sorrow and Joy
O most excellent observer of the divine law, glorious St. Joseph, the most precious Blood which the Divine Infant, our Redeemer, shed in His circumcision, afflicted thy heart: but the Sacred Name of Jesus revived it and replenished it with gladness. By this thy sorrow and joy, obtain for us, that during our life we may be free from every vice, and may in death joyfully breathe forth our soul with the Most Holy Name of Jesus in our hearts and on our lips.
Fourth Sorrow and Joy
O most faithful Saint, who wast admitted to a participation in the Mystery of our Redemption, glorious St. Joseph, if the prophecy of Simeon, concerning what Jesus and Mary were to suffer, gave thee mortal affliction, thou wast likewise filled with holy joy for the salvation and glorious resurrection of innumerable souls, which he likewise foretold. By this thy sorrow and joy, obtain for us, that we may be among the number of those who, through the merits of Jesus and the intercession of His Virgin Mother, will arise to everlasting glory.
Fifth Sorrow and Joy
O Most vigilant guardian and intimate friend of the Incarnate Son of God, glorious St. Joseph, how much didst thou suffer in providing for and serving the Son of the Most High, particulary in the flight thou wast obliged to make into Egypt! But how much also didst thou rejoice in having always with thee the same God, and seeing the Egyptian idols fall prostrate on the ground! By this thy sorrow and joy, obtain for us, that we may keep at a distance from the infernal tyrant, especially by flying from dangerous occasions, so that the idols of earthly affections may fall from our hearts, and that, being entirely devoted to the service of Jesus and Mary, we may live for them alone, and with them calmly die.
Sixth Sorrow and Joy
O angel on earth, glorious St. Joseph, who didst behold, subject to thine orders the King of heaven: although thy joy in conducting Him back was disturbed by the fear of Archilaus, thou wast, nevertheless, comforted by an Angel, and didst dwell in safety with Jesus and Mary at Nazareth. By this thy sorrow and joy, obtain for us, that our hearts being released from hurtful fears, we may enjoy peace of conscience, and live in security with Jesus and Mary, and die in their embraces.
Seventh Sorrow and Joy
O model of all sanctity, glorious saint Joseph, having lost the Divine Child without any fault of thine, thou didst seek Him in great sorrow for three days, until at length thou was filled with exceeding gladness on finding Him in the temple amidst the doctors. By this thy sorrow and joy, we beseech Thee, to intercede for us, that we may never lose Jesus by grievous sin, but that, should we have the misfortune to lose Him, we may seek for Him with unwearied sorrow until we have happily found Him: and particularly that we may find Him at the hour of our death, in order to enjoy Him in heaven, and there with thee to sing eternally His divine mercies.
Anthem. - Jesus Himself was beginning His public life about the age of thirty years, being, as it was supposed, the Son of Joseph.
V. Pray for us, O saint Joseph.
R. That we may be made worthy of the promises of Christ.
Let us Pray. - O God, Who, by Thy wonderful Providence didst vouchsafe to choose St. Joseph to be the spouse of Thy Most Holy Mother; grant, we beseech Thee, that he whom we generate as our protector on earth, may be our intercessor in heaven: Who livest and reignest, world without end.
(Special favours have been obtained by the recitation of the following prayers in honour of St. Joseph: -)
O glorious St. Joseph, faithful follower of Jesus Christ, to you do we raise our hearts and hands to implore your powerful intercession in obtaining from the benign Heart of Jesus all the helps and graces necessary for our spiritual and temporal welfare; particularly the grace of a happy death, and the special favour we now implore.
(Here mention or reflect upon your lawful requests)
O Guardian of the Word Incarnate, we feel animated with confidence that your prayers in our behalf will be graciously heard before the throne of God.
(Say the following versicle seven times, in honour of the seven joys and sorrows of saint Joseph)
V. O glorious St. Joseph, through the love you bear to Jesus Christ, and for the glory of His name. R. Hear our prayers, and obtain our petitions.
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