"Hail, holy Joseph, hail! Chaste spouse of Mary, hail!" begins a well-loved devotional hymn, one of the hymns we sing in honor of St. Joseph on his feasts and on Wednesdays throughout the year. Today is one of great conventual joy. The silence and austerity of Lenten disciplines give way to the celebration of the Solemnity. Even the bright flowers on the altar proclaim the Church's veneration of so great a saint.
St. Joseph, Spouse of the Mother of God and Foster Father of Jesus, is our father in a special way. To him we confide our temporal wants, to him we confide our vocations, to him do we go when in need spiritually or temporally. Each year, we pray a novena leading up to his feastday, thanking him for his care of our Community and entrusting to him our petitions.
A MEMBER of the "24 Club", St. Gabriel of Our Lady of Sorrows is a special inspiration to the young, students, clerics, and novices whose patron he is. In his short life, he rose heroically from an average, even worldly, life to one of great perfection, as is exhibited by the resolutions which guided his brief religious life.
"See that you despise not one of these little ones: for I say to you, that their angels in heaven always see the face of my Father who is in heaven." Mt. 18:10
"The flowers have appeared in our land, the time of pruning has come, the voice of the turtledove is heard in our land. Arise, my love, my beautiful one, and come: my dove in the clefts of the rock, in the hollow places of the wall." (Gradual).
"Agatha went to prison radiant with joy and with head held high as though
invited to a festive banquet. And she commended her agony to the Lord in prayer."
"...We humbly entreat Thee, that ... Thou wouldst vouchsafe to bless † and sanctify † these candles for the service of men and for the health of their bodies and souls..."
February has been traditionally associated with both devotion to the Holy Family and with devotion to the Passion of our Lord.
Our vowed life is a life lived in imitation of Christ's life. Fr. Louis Colin writes about religious life, "Devised by the sovereign Wisdom, from all eternity, proposed by the Master to His disciples, it is one of the exquisite fruits of the Redemption: a vigorous and immortal offshoot growing at the very foot of the Tree of the Cross, watered and nourished by the Blood of Jesus."