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by Scepter Editorial Team March 14, 2021 3 min read

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Every year, his parents used to go up to Jerusalem at the paschal feast. And when he was twelve years
old, after going up to Jerusalem, as the custom was at the time of the feast, and completing the days of
its observance, they set about their return home. But the boy Jesus, unknown to his parents, continued
his stay in Jerusalem. And they, thinking that he was among their travelling companions, had gone a
whole day’s journey before they made enquiry for him among their kinsfolk and acquaintances.


When they could not find him, they made their way back to Jerusalem in search of him, and it was only
after three days that they found him. He was sitting in the temple, in the midst of those who taught
there, listening to them and asking them questions; and all those who heard him were in amazement at
his quick understanding and at the answers he gave. (Luke 2; 41-47)

We can easily understand Mary's and Joseph's sorrow on realizing that Jesus had disappeared. They were filled
with apprehension as they searched for their son. Those sorrowful days were a premonition of the time that
would intervene between Calvary and the Resurrection. Suddenly, they hear his dear voice. There he is! They
are greatly comforted, and their pent-up emotions overflow with great joy. In this scene, St. Luke uses the word
"parents" a number of times to designate the Virgin Mary and St. Joseph. But this word has its deepest
meaning when Mary tells her Son: "Behold, your father and I have been seeking you in sorrow.” "Father." That
was the word St. Joseph would love to hear most. He would smile and gaze fondly at Jesus when he called him
"Father." As St. Josemarίa wrote: "Joseph loved Jesus as a father loves his son and showed his love by giving
him the best he had. Joseph, caring for the child as he had been commanded, made Jesus a craftsman,
transmitting his own professional skill to him. So the neighbors of Nazareth will call Jesus both faber and fabri
filius, the craftsman and the son of the crafts- man." Jesus worked in Joseph's workshop and by Joseph's side.
Grace must have worked through Joseph, so that he was able to fulfill this task of the human upbringing of the
Son of God!


"For Jesus must have resembled Joseph: in his way of working, in the features of his character, in his way of
speaking. Jesus' realism, his eye for detail, the way he sat at table and broke bread, his preference for using
everyday situations to give doctrine—all this reflects his childhood and the influence of Joseph."


Afterwards, the Gospel says that Jesus "went down with them and came to Nazareth and was obedient to them;
and his mother kept all these things carefully in her heart."


Prayer: Pattern of holiness, glorious St. Joseph, when you lost the Child Jesus through no fault of your own,
with great sorrow you sought him for three days, until you rejoiced exceedingly in finding him in the temple
among the doctors. By this sorrow and this joy, we earnestly ask you to prevent us from ever losing Jesus by
mortal sin; but if through supreme misfortune we lose him, grant that we seek him with untiring sorrow, until
we find him again and can live in friendship with him. Let us enjoy his presence in Heaven, and there with you
to sing his divine mercies.


Deepen your relationship with and devotion to St. Joseph

Download the free booklet on Devotion to St. Joseph

This Booklet Contains

  • The Seven Sundays Devotion to St. Joseph.
  • The Litany of St. Joseph.
  • Quamquam Pluries: Encyclical letter of His Holiness Leo XIII on the Holy Rosary and the Patronage of St. Joseph.
  • Patris Corde:Apostolic Letter of the Holy Father Pope Francis on the 150th anniversary of the proclamation of Saint Joseph as patron of the universal church.



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