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A Faithful and Diligent Shepherd
Monsignor Roy Cosby, RIP
Thursday, February 29 , 2024
Dear Friends in Christ,
Tomorrow, March 1st, begins the month dedicated to Saint Joseph, the man closest to Jesus. The exact title for Joseph has always been a little tricky. He’s often called the “Foster” or “Adoptive” Father of our Lord. But that’s not entirely accurate, because there was never a point in Jesus’ life that Joseph wasn’t his father; no point at which Joseph adopted him. From the moment of his conception, Jesus was the Son of Joseph by way of Joseph’s marriage to Mary. Let me propose two other terms that might help our devotion.
“Earthly Father” conveys both Joseph’s authentic fatherhood and his role to show the Fatherhood of God himself. Every father finds his vocation in, as John Paul II puts it, “revealing and in reliving on earth the very fatherhood of God.” But Joseph’s vocation is even more elevated. All fathers reveal and relive the fatherhood of God to their own children. Joseph images God the Father to God the Son.
Another title for Joseph that has become more popular recently is “Virginal Father.” This comes from the view that Joseph, like Mary, was and remained a virgin. Theirs was a virginal marriage whose fruit was Jesus Christ, virginally conceived and born. The emphasis here is on the purity of Joseph’s heart, that he loved Mary and Jesus as perfectly as a man could because of this purity.
Well, whatever title might be best, we should all have a devotion to this great man. So, some suggested devotions for the month of March:
- Pray the 30 Days Prayer to Saint Joseph (to commemorate his 30 years with our Lord)
- Pray the Novena to Saint Joseph (begin on March 10th)
- Pray the Seven Sorrows/Seven Joys of Saint Joseph
- Read Saint John Paul II’s Custos Redemptoris on Joseph
I have a confession to make…or, rather, confessionals to remake. If you have knelt in our confessionals, you have done penance! We hope to change that a little. In the coming weeks, our confessionals will be altered to provide more room for the penitent. There will be only one entrance for the penitent, into a larger room, for confession both behind the screen and face to face. If you want to confess face to face, then a screen is raised so that you can see the priest and speak with him that way. A chair will also be provided for those who have trouble kneeling. Of course, you’ll still have to do penance…
First Saturday All Night Vigil this Friday & Saturday…in honor of our Lady of Fatima. The Blessed Sacrament will be exposed for adoration at 7:30pm on Friday and be reposed before the 8:30am Mass on the First Saturday, March 2nd. Please give an hour of your time in prayers of adoration, reparation, and petition.
Unplug! In this penitential season of prayer, fasting, and almsgiving, Bishop Burbidge invites you to participate in a diocesan-wide challenge to fast from excess screen time on Friday, March 1. Join fellow Catholics from around the diocese in the effort to “unplug” from digital devices to renew our relationship with God and neighbor.
Senior Fall Prevention Program March 21st – Our Seniors Young at Heart have a special presentation at their monthly meeting on Thursday, March 21st, 5:00pm-7:00pm in Monsignor Heller Hall. Danielle Daniels, from Chesterbrook Residences, will speak on the impact of a fall on seniors’ health and how to prevent falls. There will be a panel of experts who will talk about fall prevention and answer questions. This event is open to Saint James parishioners who may have a senior parent or loved one. Interested parishioners may attend the presentation, which begins at 5:45pm. Due to space limitations, please RSVP by March 15th if you will be attending the dinner and/or the presentation to Susan Jackson, [email protected] or Cae Gilley, 703-533-3845.
I’m going to a friend’s 50th surprise birthday party. It’s odd. You think he would have caught on after the first 49.
Through the intercession of our Lady and Saint James, may the Lord bless and keep you.
Sincerely in Christ,