Thread: Why Catholic ?
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Old 9th February 2018, 05:22 PM
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Apart from Moses as noted above, another person received a particular calling, but this time for the unique role in the event of the mystery of the incarnation of the Son of God. His name was Joseph. The New Testament Joseph. Now, keep in mind that God is a communion of Persons. One God, three Persons. Father, Son and Holy Spirit (for more on the Trinity, see post dated “7th August 2017” on the second page continuing to the third page: http://www.catholicplanet.net/forum/...?t=6063&page=2 ). Since the Second Person of the Holy Trinity (Jesus) was to become incarnate, it was fitting for Him to have a human/visible father on this earth and fitting for the Virgin Mary to have a human/visible husband at her side. Therefore, St. Joseph was called to be God the Father’s representative here on earth, to be His vicar, to the extent of human fatherly capacity (for God transcends human fatherhood). “It was to assure fatherly protection for Jesus that God chose Joseph to be Mary's spouse”. “It is also important to uphold Mary's marriage to Joseph, because juridically Joseph's fatherhood depends on it”. In the Gospel narrative we see that St. Joseph "... is not deprived of his fatherly authority from the moment that he is told to name the child”. “…Even the Virgin Mary, well aware that she has not conceived Christ as a result of conjugal relations with Joseph, still calls him Christ's father.” – (For more info, you can see Redimptoris Custos # 7 by St. John Paul II).

Certainly, God the Father is not a man and He did not incarnate. God is infinitely greater than all creation, but here we are considering St. Joseph’s role only to the extent that his relationship with Jesus as a human father figure in the Holy Family and society, thus being in the place of, or representing God the Father to the extent of human fatherhood (for God goes beyond mere human fatherhood or any created thing (Luke 14:26) and we may physically leave our parents when getting married (Matthew 19:5), but God never leaves us). Now, since Mary was conceived by the power of the Holy Spirit (the Third Person of the Holy Trinity), it is traditionally maintained in a mystical and spiritual sense, that Mary is the ‘spouse’ of the Holy Spirit. It is St. Joseph who takes this call to be Mary’s husband. “While clearly affirming that Jesus was conceived by the power of the Holy Spirit, and that virginity remained intact in the marriage (cf. Mt 1:18-25; Lk 1:26-38 ), the evangelists refer to Joseph as Mary's husband and to Mary as his wife (cf. Mt 1:16, 18-20, 24; Lk 1:27; 2:5).” – (Redimptoris Custos # 7).

Now, God could have decided to protect, educate and provide for the human nature of Jesus and His mother without a human father or without a husband for Mary, but since God did so by appointing St. Joseph for this role, it shows us that it was not only fitting but also important to have a role model before society of how a Christian family shall be, father, mother, children. God’s purpose for family and society is not intended to be truncated, it is to be a reflection of the Holy Trinity, to be a communion of persons with proper order.

Humanly speaking, St. Joseph was able to fulfil his obligations as husband of Mary and as father of Jesus by also doing “the paperwork” of registering for the census (Luke 2:1-5) as the father of Jesus (John 1:45) in the Roman Empire. Presenting their firstborn Child at the Temple for His circumcision, accomplish their due sacrifice offering as prescribed by the Mosaic law (Luke 2:21-24), among other things. It is clear that God wishes the Holy Family to have their visible head. A visible father of Jesus before society. “Isn't this the carpenter's son?” (Matt 13:55).
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John 3:27; John 15:5; Matthew 19:26
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