Joseph’s dreams, Joseph’s duties, Joseph’s death
© Agnes Sam 2019
When a Jewish boy attains the age of twelve years, he is considered to be a man and is allowed to attend the Jewish temple. When Jesus is found in the temple we can assume that he is twelve years old. He attends the temple accompanied by his earthly parents, St Joseph and the Blessed Virgin Mary. At some stage on their return journey home, St Joseph and Mother Mary discover that Jesus is not with them. They have lost him. The couple turn back and retrace their steps searching for him along the return journey. Jesus, however, is twelve years old and although Joseph and Mary consider him lost, this is not how Jesus perceives his status. At this age Jesus is aware that he has a divine nature. When this first occurs to him we are never told in the New Testament. Suffice it to say that when preaching in the temple, Jesus is fully aware of his divinity.
After retracing their journey right back to the temple, St Joseph and Mother Mary discover Jesus preaching to the Rabbis and elders of the Jewish faith. St Joseph and the Blessed Mary are overjoyed to find him. He, however, appears to reprimand them.
The words ascribed to Jesus in the New Testament, however, are:
“How is it you sought me? Did you not know that I must be about my father’s business?”
(Luke 2:46-50) (Luke 12-49) (Matthew 21:12-6) (Mark 11:15-18)
The words Jesus speaks to St Joseph and the Blessed Mary ever Virgin is a painful wounding of St Joseph’s heart. He is the earthly father of Jesus.
And it is a wounding of the Blessed Virgin Mary because the Rabbis and elders, who are ignorant of the divinity of Jesus, interpret the words of Jesus to his earthly parents to reveal that the Blessed Mary was unmarried and pregnant and that St Joseph stepped in to be the father of her unborn child.
Joseph and Mary know that Jesus has a divine nature. But no one else does.
The wounding of their two hearts is their sorrow and would cause them to shed tears. These are the tears and sorrows that the Blessed Virgin Mary asks us honour and remember daily.