Please help support the mission of New Advent and get the full contents of this website as an instant download. Life Sources The chief sources of information on the life of St. Joseph are the first chapters of our first and third Gospels ; they are practically also the only reliable sources, for, whilst, on the holy patriarch's life, as on many other points connected with the
Was st joseph a widower history which are left untouched by the canonical writings, the apocryphal literature is full of details, the non-admittance of these works into the Canon of the Sacred Books casts a strong suspicion upon their contents; and, even granted that some of the facts recorded by them may be founded on trustworthy traditions, it is in most instances next to impossible to discern and sift these particles of true history from the fancies with which they are associated.
Among these apocryphal productions dealing more or less extensively with some episodes of St. Joseph the son of Jacob; according to St. This is not the place to recite the many and most various endeavours to solve the vexing questions arising from the divergences between both genealogies ; nor is it necessary to point out explanation which meets best all the requirements of the problem see G ENEALOGY OF C HRIST ; suffice it to remind the reader that, contrary to what was once advocated, most modern writers readily admit that in both documents we possess the genealogy of Joseph, and that it is quite possible to reconcile their data.
Residence At any rate, Bethlehemthe city of David and his descendants, appears to have been the birth-place of Joseph. When, however, the Gospel history opens, namely, a few months before the AnnunciationJoseph was settled at Nazareth. Joseph, indeed, was a tektonas we learn from Matthew The word means both mechanic in general and carpenter in particular; St.
Justin vouches for the latter sense Dialogue with Trypho 88and tradition has accepted this interpretation, which is followed in the English Bible. Marriage It is probably at Nazareth that Joseph betrothed and married her who was to become the Mother of God. When the marriage took place, whether before or after the Incarnationis no easy matter to settle, and on this point the masters of exegesis have at all times been at variance. Most modern commentatorsfollowing the footsteps of St.
Thomasunderstand that, at the epoch of the Annunciationthe Blessed Virgin was only affianced to Joseph; as St. Thomas notices, this interpretation suits better all the evangelical data. It will not be without interest to recall here, unreliable though they are, the lengthy stories concerning St. Joseph's marriage contained in the apocryphal writings. When forty years of age, Joseph married a woman called Melcha or Was st joseph a widower by some, Salome by others; they lived forty-nine years together and had six children, two daughters and four sons, the youngest of whom was James the Less, "the Lord's brother".
A year after his wife's death, as the priests announced through Judea that they wished to find in the tribe of Juda a respectable man to espouse Marythen twelve to fourteen years of age. Joseph, who was at the time ninety years old, went up to Jerusalem among the candidates; a miracle manifested the choice God had made of Joseph, and two years later the Annunciation took place.
These dreams, as St. Jerome styles them, from which many a Christian artist has drawn his inspiration see, for instance, Raphael's "Espousals of the Virgin"are void of authority; they nevertheless acquired in the course of ages some popularity; in them some ecclesiastical writers sought the answer to the well-known difficulty arising from the mention in the Gospel of "the Lord's brothers" ; from them also popular credulity has, contrary to all probability, as well as to the tradition witnessed by old works of artretained the belief that St.
Joseph was an old man at the time of marriage with the Mother of The Incarnation This marriage, true and complete, was, in the intention of the spouses, to be virgin marriage cf. Augustine"De cons. But soon was the faith of Joseph in his spouse to be Was st joseph a widower tried: However painful the discovery must have been for him, unaware as he was of the mystery of the Incarnationhis delicate feelings forbade him to defame his affianced, and he resolved "to put her away privately; but while he thought on these things, behold the angel of the Lord appeared to him in his sleep, saying: Joseph, son of Davidfear not to take unto thee Mary thy wife, for that which is conceived in her, is of the Holy Ghost.
"Was st joseph a widower" Joseph, rising from his sleep, did as the angel of the Lord had commanded him, and took unto him his wife" Matthew 1: The Nativity and the flight to Egypt A few months later, the time came for Joseph and Mary to go to Bethlehemto be enrolled, according to the decree issued by Caesar Augustus: What must have been the thoughts of the holy man at the birth of the Saviourthe coming of the shepherds and of the wise menand at the events which occurred at the time of the Presentation of Jesus in the Templewe can merely guess; St.
Luke tells only that he was "wondering at those things which were spoken concerning him" 2: New trials were soon to follow. The news that a king of the Jews was born could not but kindle in the wicked heart of the old and bloody tyrant, Herodthe fire of jealousy. Again "an angel of the Lord appeared in sleep to Joseph, saying: Arise, and take the child and his motherand fly into Egypt: Return to Nazareth The summons to go back to Palestine came only after a few years, and the Holy Family settled again at Nazareth.
Joseph's was henceforth the simple and uneventful life of an humble Jewsupporting himself and his family by his work, and faithful to the religious practices commanded by the Law or observed by pious Israelites.
The only noteworthy incident recorded by the Gospel is the loss of, and anxious quest for, Jesusthen twelve years old, when He had strayed during the yearly pilgrimage to the Holy City Luke 2: Death This is the last we hear of St.
Joseph in the sacred writingsand we may well suppose that Jesus's foster-father died before the beginning of Savior's public life. In several circumstances, indeed, the Gospels speak of the latter's mother and brothers Matthew Would Jesusmoreover, when about to die on the Cross, have entrusted His mother to John's care, had St. Joseph been still alive? According to the apocryphal "Story of Joseph the Carpenter", the holy man reached his hundred and eleventh year when he died, on 20 July A.
Epiphanius gives him ninety years of age at the time of his demise; and if we are to believe the Venerable Bedehe was buried in the Valley of Josaphat. In truth we do not know when St. Joseph died; it is most unlikely that he attained the ripe old age spoken of by the "Story of Joseph" and The probability is that he died and was buried at Nazareth. Devotion to Saint Joseph Joseph Was st joseph a widower "a just man".
This praise bestowed by the Holy Ghostand the privilege of having been chosen by God to be the foster-father of Jesus and the spouse of the Virgin Motherare the foundations of the honour paid to St. Joseph by the Church. So well-grounded are these foundations that it is not a little surprising that the cult of St.
Joseph was so slow in winning recognition. Foremost among the causes of this is the fact that "during the first centuries of the Church's existenceit was only the martyrs who enjoyed veneration" Kellner. Far from being ignored or passed over in silence during the early Christian ages, St. Joseph's prerogatives were occasionally descanted upon by the Fathers ; even such eulogies as cannot be attributed to the writers among whose works they found admittance bear witness that the ideas and devotion therein expressed were familiar, not only to the theologians and preachers, and must have "Was st joseph a widower" readily welcomed by the people.
The earliest traces of public recognition of the sanctity of St.
Joseph are to be found in the East. His feastif we may trust the assertions of Papebroch, was kept by the Copts as early as the beginning of the fourth century. Helenathere was a gorgeous oratory dedicated to the honour of our saint. Certain it is, at all events, that the feast of "Joseph the Carpenter" entered, on 20 July, in one of the old Coptic Calendars in our possession, as also in a Synazarium of the eighth and ninth century published by Cardinal Mai Script.
Greek menologies of a later date at least mention St. Joseph on 25 or 26 December, and a twofold of him along with other saints was made on the two Sundays next before and after Christmas. In the West the name of the foster-father of Our Lord Nutritor Domini appears in local martyrologies of the ninth and tenth centuries, and we find infor the first time, a church dedicated to his honour at Bologna.
The devotion, then merely private, as it seems, gained a great impetus owing to the influence and zeal of such saintly persons as St. Thomas AquinasSt. Bridget of Sweden d. His feastintroduced towards the end shortly afterwards, into the Dominican Calendar, gradually gained a foothold in various dioceses of Western Europe. Among Was st joseph a widower most zealous promoters of the devotion at that epoch, St.
Bernadine of Siena d. Gersonwho had, incomposed Was st joseph a widower Office of the Espousals of Joseph particularly at the Council of Constancein promoting the public recognition of the cult of St.
Only under the pontificate of Sixtus IVwere the efforts of these holy men rewarded by Roman Calendar 19 March. From that time the devotion acquired greater and greater popularity, the dignity of the feast keeping pace with this steady growth.
One festival in the year, however, was not deemed enough to satisfy the piety of the people. The feast of the Espousals of the Blessed Virgin and St. Josephso strenuously advocated by Gersonand permitted first by Paul III to the Franciscansthen to other religious orders and individual dioceseswas, ingranted to all countries that solicited it, a proper Office, compiled by the Dominican Pietro Aurato, being assigned, and the day appointed being 23 January. Nor was this all, for the reformed Order of Carmelitesinto which St.
Teresa had infused her great devotion to the foster-father of Jesuschose him, infor their patronand inwere allowed to celebrate the feast of his Patronage on the third Sunday after Easter. This feastsoon adopted throughout the Spanish Kingdomwas later on extended to all states and dioceses which asked for the privilege. No devotion, perhaps, has grown so universal, none seems to have appealed so forcibly to the heart of the Christian people, and particularly of the labouring classes, during the nineteenth century, as that of St.
This wonderful and unprecedented increase of popularity called for a new lustre to be added to the cult of the saint. Accordingly, one of the first acts of the pontificate of Pius IXhimself singularly devoted to St. Josephwas to extend to the whole Church the feast "Was st joseph a widower" the Patronageand in December,according to the wishes of the bishops and of all the faithfulhe solemnly declared the Holy Patriarch Joseph, patron of the Catholic Churchand enjoined that his feast 19 March should henceforth be celebrated as a double of the first class but without octaveon account of Lent.
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Robert Appleton Company, This article was transcribed for New Advent by Joseph P. In memory of Father Joseph Paredom. The editor of New Advent is Kevin Knight. My email address is webmaster at newadvent. Regrettably, I can't reply to every letter, but I greatly appreciate your feedback — especially notifications about typographical errors and inappropriate ads.
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The chief sources of information on the life of St. Joseph are the first chapters of our first and third Gospels; they are practically also the only reliable sources, for. Saint Jerome also explicitly says that Saint Joseph lived and died as a virgin (not a widower). This also confirms to the belief of the early. In the Eastern Church, the idea that Joseph was a widower was more for St.
Joseph as a widower with children from a previous marriage.
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Was Joseph Previously Married?
Joseph, who was at the time ninety years old, went up to Jerusalem among the candidates; a miracle manifested the choice God had made of Joseph, and two years later the Annunciation took place. Joseph was so slow in winning recognition.
According to the apocryphal "Story of Joseph the Carpenter", the holy man reached his hundred and eleventh year when he died, on 20 July A. Certainly that is possible; he definitely possessed wisdom of somebody who understood what life and love means. Death This is the last we hear of St.
Please help support the mission of New Advent and get the full contents of this website as an instant download. Life Sources The chief sources of information on the life of St. Joseph are the first chapters of our first and third Gospels ; they are practically also the only reliable sources, for, whilst, on the holy patriarch's life, as on many other points connected with the Saviour's history which are left untouched by the canonical writings, the apocryphal literature is full of details, the non-admittance of these works into the Canon of the Sacred Books casts a strong suspicion upon their contents; and, even granted that some of the facts recorded by them may be founded on trustworthy traditions, it is in most instances next to impossible to discern and sift these particles of true history from the fancies with which they are associated.
Among these apocryphal productions dealing more or less extensively with some episodes of St. Joseph the son of Jacob; according to St. This is not the place to recite the many and most various endeavours to solve the vexing questions arising from the divergences between both genealogies ; nor is it necessary to point out the explanation which meets best all the requirements of the problem see G ENEALOGY OF C HRIST ; suffice it to remind the reader that, contrary to what was once advocated, most modern writers readily admit that in both documents we possess the genealogy of Joseph, and that it is quite possible to reconcile their data.
Residence At any rate, Bethlehem , the city of David and his descendants, appears to have been the birth-place of Joseph. When, however, the Gospel history opens, namely, a few months before the Annunciation , Joseph was settled at Nazareth. Joseph, indeed, was a tekton , as we learn from Matthew The word means both mechanic in general and carpenter in particular; St.
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- CATHOLIC ENCYCLOPEDIA: St. Joseph
- Hugh Galvin III wrote: Hello,. Was St. Joseph a widower before he married Mary and did he have children by his first wife? If so, why aren't they mentioned in the.
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- Joseph is a figure in the Gospels who was married to Mary, Jesus' mother, and, in the Christian . Christian tradition represents Mary as a widow during the adult ministry of her son. Joseph is not mentioned as being present at the Wedding at. Nevertheless, whether this was St Joseph's first or second marriage, or whether St Joseph was just an old widower who only took care of Mary.
Is she shy or uninterested?Thanks for asking. According to two sources, he was. According to the Greek Orthodox Church, he was married to a woman named Salome. The Catholic. In the Eastern Church, the idea that Joseph was a widower was more for St. Joseph as a widower with children from a previous marriage..
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