I took this picture a few years ago at Los Angeles Cathedral of Our Lady of the Angels. The carving is of St. Joseph with a young Jesus. It is a rare and powerful portrayal of a delightful moment in this father-son relationship.
Today we celebrate the feast of St. Joseph, the father of Jesus. It Italy it’s also Father’s Day.
The vocation of fatherhood was often seen simply and primarily in terms of ruling over and providing for the household. In recent decades we have moved to a healthier understanding of parenting as a shared responsibility of leadership and provision. The primary role of a father is to love.
I am thinking especially today of the many men who are loving (as fathers), children who are not their own biological offspring. Today, more men than ever are in this situation. There are many reasons for this reality. But how these men found themselves as foster fathers is not as important as the fact that they are now called by God to love, as fathers, their foster children.
Some of these men are providing fatherly love to children who in earlier years were denied this love, or who tragically were mis-treated and unloved by their biological fathers.
Many foster-fathers are replacing lost fathers, or sharing the role of fatherhood for perhaps a few hours or days each week.
Whatever your situation as a father, today on the feast of St. Joseph the father of Jesus) we celebrate your feast day. And today especially we pray for you.