Fr. Scott Haynes
In the Sacred Scriptures, we read very little of St. Joseph. St. Matthew simply refers to him as a “just man” (Matthew 1:19), a humble carpenter, who served our Lord and the Blessed Virgin Mary faithfully as His earthly father and as Mary's chaste guardian.
St. Joseph was a diligent protector of the Christ Child. The litany recalls this in referring to St. Joseph's role in taking Mary and the Infant Lord Jesus into Egypt in order to protect the Babe of Bethlehem from being killed by King Herod (Matt 3:13-16).
The Litany of St. Joseph, in calling him as the patron of the dying gives one of many examples of his powerful patronage. St. Theresa of Avila once suggested famously that although we may have access to many saints as intercessors for our various needs, we should “go especially to Joseph, for he has great power with God.” In praying this litany of St. Joseph we are indeed going to the patron saint and “protector” of the Universal Church!
Lord, have mercy. Christ, have mercy. Lord, have mercy. Christ, hear us. Christ, graciously hear us.
God, the Father of Heaven, have mercy on us. God the Son, Redeemer of the world, have mercy on us. God the Holy Spirit, have mercy on us. Holy Trinity, One God, have mercy on us.
Holy Mary, pray for us (after each line) Saint Joseph, Renowned offspring of David, Light of Patriarchs, Spouse of the Mother of God, Chaste guardian of the Virgin, Foster-father of the Son of God, Diligent protector of Christ, Head of the Holy Family, Joseph most just, Joseph most chaste, Joseph most prudent, Joseph most strong, Joseph most obedient, Joseph most faithful, Mirror of patience, Lover of poverty, Model of artisans, Glory of home life, Guardian of virgins, Pillar of families, Solace of the wretched,
Hope of the sick, Patron of the dying, Terror of demons, Protector of Holy Church,
Lamb of God, who take away the sins of the world, Spare us, O Lord. Lamb of God, who take away the sins of the world, Graciously hear us, O Lord. Lamb of God, who take away the sins of the world, Have mercy on us.
V. He made him the lord of His house: R. And ruler of all His substance.
Let us pray.
O God, who in Thine unspeakable providence didst vouchsafe to choose blessed Joseph to be the spouse of Thine own most holy Mother: grant, we beseech Thee, that we may deserve to have him for our intercessor in heaven, whom we reverence as our defender on earth: who livest and reignest world without end. Amen.