St. Joseph was charged with an incredible, difficult, and heavy task. He not only had a wife, but now God has given him the role of stepfather. He will not only raise a son, but he was charged with raising God’s only son. He raised the Lord, the Messiah, and the King of Kings. Many husbands, wives, fathers, mothers, and caretakers understand the struggles Joseph must have endured to properly care for his family. St. Joseph understands your troubles and stress as well.
“Now this is how the birth of Jesus Christ came about. When his mother Mary was betrothed to Joseph, but before they lived together, she was found with child through the holy Spirit. Joseph, her husband, since he was a righteous man, yet unwilling to expose her to shame, decided to divorce her quietly. Such as his intention when, behold, the angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream and said, ‘Joseph, son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary your wife into your home. For it is through the holy Spirit that this child has been conceived in her. She will bear a son and you are to name him Jesus, because he will save his people from their sins.” (Matthew 1:18-21)
If any father or husband knew what it was like to be stressed, then it would have been Joseph at this moment. Yet, he put his hands to work and provided a life for his family. He obeyed the Lord and took them to safety in Egypt when he was told to do so, and he returned at the command of God. He ensured they were faithful Jews and obedient to the laws of God. He understands struggling to make ends meet. He understands the desire to work and the result of work. He understands your situation.
Pope Leo XIII composed a prayer to St. Joseph in his 1889 encyclical, Quamquam Pluris. The prayer seeks Joseph’s (the carpenter and laborer’s) intercession. Joseph is particularly close to those individuals working hard daily to put food on the table for their family. He understands the hard work, long hours, and scarce resources for daily needs. He also knows what trusting the Lord to lead and provide can do. The following prayer is an adaptation of the one Pope Leo XIII composed and includes specific intercession for those employed and unemployed.
St. Joseph is known as the protector of the Church and protector of Christians. The prayer composed by Pope Leo XIII is a powerful prayer utilized against the attacks of Satan, sin, and the demonic. It is also a powerful intercessory prayer when paired with any of the Marian prayers.
For those living paycheck to paycheck and for those unemployed seeking a means of work, seek Joseph’s intercession. Although we know little about this amazing man, we know he fulfilled his duties as a husband and a father to provide for his family. He waits and desires to intercede for you and your family as well.
If you’re struggling to make enough money to pay your bills, or to find suitable employment that would meet your needs, then seek Joseph through this prayer each day:
To you, O blessed Joseph, do we come in our tribulation,
and having implored the help of your most holy Spouse,
we confidently invoke your patronage also.
Through that charity which bound you to the Immaculate Virgin Mother of God
and through the paternal love
with which you embraced the Child Jesus,
we humbly beg you graciously to regard the inheritance
which Jesus Christ has purchased by his Blood,
and with your power and strength
to aid us in our necessities.
O most watchful guardian of the Holy Family
defend the chosen children of Jesus Christ;
O most loving father, ward off from us
every contagion of error and corrupting influence;
O our most mighty protector, be kind to us
and from heaven assist us in our struggle
with the power of darkness.
As once you rescued the Child Jesus from deadly peril,
so now protect God’s Holy Church
from the snares of the enemy and from all adversity;
shield, too, each one of us by your constant protection,
so that, supported by your example and your aid,
we may be able to live piously, to die in holiness,
and to obtain eternal happiness in heaven. Amen