Feast of the Holy Family of Jesus, Mary, and Saint Joseph

Sermon of the Cure of Ars – Saint John Marie Vianney

Holy Family (Family life in a disturbed and wavering condition.  Example of the Holy Family … Threefold mission of the family…)

Saint Thomas Aquinas explains the Gospel – from the Catena Aurea

God, come to our assistance; Jesus, Mary, Joseph please make haste to help us!

Jesus!    Mary!    Joseph!

 FERVENT invocation of these blessed names gains for us access to the persons, yes, to the very hearts of Jesus, Mary and Joseph.

 The aspiration JESUS, MARY, JOSEPH!  is enriched with an indulgence of seven years for each recital (Raccolta, 274), applicable to the poor souls in purgatory.  This, obviously, is a pearl among partial indulgences.  But why should so high an atoning value be attached to so short a formula?

 1.  To invite us to pray it unceasingly.

 2.  Because of the incomprehensible grandeur of the holy Names of Jesus, Mary and Joseph.  The name of a person is a personification of its bearer.  What a glorious invocation, then, is the prayer: Jesus, Mary, Joseph!  What a vast field for meditation here lies open to angels and men!  Each one of these names, Jesus, Mary, Joseph, unfolds to us a world of wonders, an abyss of greatness and beauty, of grace and power.

 At the sound of these names, Jesus, Mary, Joseph, which to us are so sweet and love-inspiring, all hell shrinks back in terror.  The aspiration Jesus, Mary, Joseph! is a deadly flash of lighting to Satan and the devils.

 The aspiration Jesus, Mary, Joseph! is a golden arrow, a fiery dart, which springs from our hearts and at the same moment blissfully wounds the hearts of Jesus, Mary and Joseph and lays them lovingly open to us and to our dear departed.  Into this formula, so divine in its content, one breathes the tenderest, strongest and purest love.

 How often should we pray this aspiration?  Without counting. . . or, if we prefer, on our rosary; on each bead these three names, Jesus, Mary, Joseph and nothing more (that is no Creed, no Our Father, Hail Mary or Glory be to the Father).  It is not a rosary, but simply a chaplet of diamonds, beautiful gems from the Orient of Divine love.  It is greatly to be desired that this practice be spread over the world, flowing as a river of love in a never-ending stream from the hearts and lips of Christian people.

 The aspiration Jesus, Mary, Joseph! is an inexhaustible treasure of indulgences especially for the poor souls.   With this prayer one enkindles a fire on earth which extinguishes the flames of Purgatory.  If every Christian soul but knew, if the world but knew, what consolation for the poor souls is contained in the names, Jesus, Mary, Joseph!  Day and night, everywhere and without ceasing may this blessed prayer be the refrain of fervent petitions.  Gather, O Christian souls, gather blessings through these heavenly names, Jesus, Mary, Joseph, for those who suffer unspeakable pains in the flames of Purgatory; beg in these sweet names, Jesus, Mary, Joseph, without ceasing.

 The aspiration Jesus, Mary, Joseph! is a golden book, an inexhaustible fountain.  It awakens a piety which is sweet and strong, wide, deep and full of meaning.  And yet, how short and clear, how simple and wonderful is its form!  It is the golden key to the hearts of Jesus, Mary and Joseph.  It is a precious gem of piety.  Already here on earth, but especially in heaven, this prayer will effect an intimate union of the soul, a jubilation, a true fire of love.

 The aspiration Jesus, Mary, Joseph! is an inexhaustible subject for meditation.  The thoughtful repetition of these names, Jesus, Mary and Joseph, so full of love and light, causes us to meditate, and from the beginning this meditation appeals to us, charms us, affects us, leads us to God and submerges us into Him.  We find in these names, Jesus, Mary, Joseph, a power that urges, uplifts, stimulates, impels and quickens.  Meditation on these holy names, Jesus, Mary, Joseph, fills the heart and mind, excites sublime thoughts and leads one to self-sacrificing resolutions.  This method of meditation may constitute the bliss of a theologian even as it enraptures the soul of a little child.  It permits all, without exception, to penetrate into the vast domain of our holy Religion and to meditate at the same time on the articles of faith, the commandments, virtues and sacraments.  Like a bee that flies about in an immense garden, where perpetual spring reigns, drawing sweet nectar from bud and blossom, so we may gather heavenly thoughts and graces.

 May these blessed names, Jesus, Mary, Joseph, be often on our lips during life, and may we with our dying breath sigh: Jesus, Mary, Joseph!

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