On December 8, Pope Francis surprised the Church by declaring a ”Year of Saint Joseph” with his Apostolic Letter, Patris Corde (“With a Father’s Heart”). The Letter recognizes the 150th anniversary of Blessed Pope Pius IX’s declaration of Saint Joseph as Patron of the Universal Church. The year, which began on the Feast of the Immaculate Conception, will extend to December 8, 2021.
This special year is providential for the Congregation of Holy Cross. Not only is Saint Joseph one of the principal patrons in Holy Cross, but the Congregation is also in the midst of the 200th Anniversary celebration of the founding of the Brothers of St Joseph. Originally founded by Fr. Jaques Dujarié, the Brother of St. Joseph became the Brothers of Holy Cross when Blessed Basile Moreau joined them and his Auxiliary Priests in the Fundamental Act of Union in 1837.
With this deep connection to St. Joseph, the Congregation of Holy Cross is currently exploring ways to assist in commemorating this special year.
Of course, this year is especially meaningful for St. Joseph’s Oratory in Montreal, the largest shrine to St. Joseph in the world. Fr. Michael DeLaney, C.S.C., newly installed Rector at the Oratory said, “We see the Year of St. Joseph as a great opportunity to respond to the invitation by Pope Francis to show the world why Saint Joseph is so important to us all as the Patron of the Universal Church. St. André always pointed the way to Joseph.”
Upcoming events at the Oratory are in the planning stages, and more news will be forthcoming.
In the words of St. André Bessette, “When you invoke Saint Joseph, you don’t have to speak much. You know your Father in heaven knows what you need. Well—so does his friend, Saint Joseph.”