Year of St. Joseph

On December 8, 2020, Pope Francis issued his Apostolic Letter titled Patris corde (With a Father’s Heart) in commemoration of the 150th anniversary of the proclamation of St. Joseph as Patron of the Universal Church by Pope Pius IX. In conjunction with this anniversary, the Holy Father declared a special “Year of St. Joseph” which extended to December 8, 2021.

Thirty-nine years before Pope Pius IX’s proclamation, Blessed Basile Moreau consecrated the Brothers of Holy Cross to the “heart of St. Joseph,” as he consecrated the Auxiliary Priests to the Sacred Heart of Jesus and the Sisters to the Heart of Mary. While devotion to the heart of St. Joseph remains a private devotion in the Church today, devotion to the foster-father of Jesus Christ has always been integral to the spirituality of the Congregation of Holy Cross.

The epitome of this devotion was embodied in the life and ministry of St. André Bessette, the founder of St. Joseph’s Oratory in Montreal. Brother André described himself “as a lowly instrument at the service of Saint Joseph.” While thousands sought his healing and solace, he always directed them to the intercession of St. Joseph.

Now that this special year has come to a close, we continue to invite you to heed St. André’s advice and prayerfully “Go to Joseph.” To assist you in this, we offer prayers to St. Joseph taken from our Holy Cross tradition, excerpts from the writings of Blessed Basile Moreau on St. Joseph, and reflections from Holy Cross religious on their devotion to St. Joseph. We also extend the invitation to you to continue to explore the resources of the 200th Anniversary of the Founding of the Brothers of St. Joseph, the precursors of the Brothers of Holy Cross, which providentially coincided with the Year of St. Joseph declared by Pope Francis.