O God, who from the family of your servant David raised up Joseph to be the guardian of your incarnate Son and the spouse of his virgin mother: Give us grace to imitate his uprightness of life and his obedience to your commands; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, forever and ever. Amen.
2 Samuel 7:4,8-16; Psalm 89:1-29; Romans 4:13-18; Luke 2:41-52
Today we step aside from the usual focus of Lent to celebrate the life of Saint Joseph, the adoptive father of Jesus and husband of the Blessed Virgin Mary. Very little about his life known, as he drops from the biblical accounts before Jesus is even fully grown. Today’s Gospel reading is the last we hear directly about Joseph – functioning as Jesus’ father to the point where even Jesus was submissive to him. It is through Joseph that Jesus is legally reckoned to be from the kingly line of David, as God promised concerning the Christ in the Old Testament reading and the Psalm. And, as the Epistle reading describes with Abraham, the relationship of Joseph and Jesus is double-bound, not simply by Law by also by faithfulness. This double focus is taken up in the Collect as well as we pray to imitate not only Joseph’s obedience to the Law, but also his faithful response to God’s call on his life.