20th Day — The Death of St. Joseph
Precious in the sight of the Lord is the death of His saints. (Psalm cxv. 15.)
1. For nigh thirty years Joseph had been the faithful spouse of Mary, the gentle foster-father of Jesus. But now the time came for him to die. How tenderly Mary nursed him in his failing strength! How she delighted in supplying all his wants, in ministering to them during the day, in watching by his side during the night! What a model to us who often grow weary with the long sickness of some invalid whom we are tending!
2. St. Joseph's death! Model of a happy death! What joy to die in the arms of Jesus and Mary! To be consoled by the Queen of heaven! To receive the last blessing from God Incarnate! No wonder that he is the patron of a happy death, since from the beginning of the world there was none whose death was surrounded with such glorious privileges and blessings as his.
3. How had Joseph procured so happy a death?
(a) By waiting for God's guidance in all his actions and promptly following it.
(b) By his devotion to Mary and to Jesus.
(c) By his patience, meekness, prudence, gentleness, purity.
Imitate St. Joseph. Pray to him for a happy death.
Jesus, Mary, and Joseph, I give you my heart and my soul!
Jesus, Mary, and Joseph, assist me in my last agony!
Jesus, Mary, and Joseph, may I die in peace in your blessed company!