19 March: St Joseph, Spouse of the BVM and Patron of the Universal Church

To you, O blessed Joseph,
do we come in our tribulation,
and having implored the help of your most holy spouse,
we confidently invoke your patronage also.
Through that charity which bound you
to the immaculate Virgin Mother of God
and through the paternal love
with which you embraced the Child Jesus,
we humbly beg you graciously to regard
the inheritance which Jesus Christ
has purchased by his Blood,
and with your power and strength
to aid us in our necessities.

O most watchful Guardian of the Holy Family,
defend the chosen children of Jesus Christ;
O most loving father,
ward off from us
every contagion of error and corrupting influence;
O our most mighty protector,
be propitious to us and from heaven assist us
in our struggle with the power of darkness;
and, as once you rescued the Child Jesus from deadly peril,
so now protect God’s Holy Church
from the snares of the enemy and from all adversity;
shield, too, each one of us by your constant protection,
so that, supported by your example and your aid,
we may be able to live piously, to die holily,
and to obtain eternal happiness in heaven. Amen.

(Ad te, beati Ioseph, an ancient prayer to St Joseph)

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