"These are the reasons why men of every rank and country should fly to the trust and guard of the blessed Joseph. Fathers of families find in Joseph the best personification of paternal solicitude and vigilance; spouses a perfect example of love, of peace, and of conjugal fidelity; virgins at the same time find in him the model and protector of virginal integrity. The noble of birth will [l]earn of Joseph how to guard their dignity even in misfortune; the rich will understand, by his lessons, what are the goods most to be desired and won at the price of their labour. As to workmen, artisans, and persons of lesser degree, their recourse to Joseph is a special right, and his example is for their particular imitation. " (Quamquam Pluries, On Devotion to St. Joseph, Pope Leo XIII, 1889)
Though there are many virtues that St. Joseph exemplifies, one which brilliantly shines forth is his desire for holiness. His eagerness to do the will of God is not only evident in His prompt obedience to the messages of the angel, but also in his closeness to Jesus and Mary. It is easy to think that anyone would have been happy to gaze at the Face of God each day and to serve His Mother. Yet, it took a great amount of humility to be in the constant presence of God. Joseph accepted his weaknesses as a man, but did not fall on them as a crutch and readily sought to learn from Mary and Her Son.
St. Joseph is without pretense; living in the home of Nazareth, he was not found with a defensive attitude or insecure manner. Rather, he possessed a peaceful spirit and true humility, recognizing his necessary role as head of the Holy Family. Joseph had found the greatest of treasures in his adopted Son, and perfect wife, and protected them both with utmost care. We would do well to heed the example of Joseph, eagerly seeking to be near all that is good and holy, and jealously guarding the great treasure that is our family life and marriage from anything that may even slightly taint them.
"We see that at the beginning of the New Testament, as at the beginning of the Old, there is a married couple. But whereas Adam and Eve were the source of evil which was unleashed on the world, Joseph and Mary arc the summit from which holiness spreads all over the earth. The Savior began the work of salvation by this virginal and holy union, wherein is manifested his all-powerful will to purify and sanctify the family - that sanctuary of love and cradle of life." (Redemptoris Custos, No. 7, 1989, Bl. John Paul II)