Pope Francis has announced a Year of St. Joseph in honor of the 150th anniversary of the proclamation of Joseph as patron of the Universal Church.

The year began Dec. 8, 2020, and concludes on Dec. 8, 2021.

In his Apostolic Letter entitled Patris corde (“With a Father’s Heart”), Pope Francis describes St. Joseph as a beloved father, a tender and loving father, an obedient father, an accepting father; a father who is creatively courageous, a working father, a father in the shadows.

The Holy Father wrote Patris corde against the backdrop of the Covid-19 pandemic, which, he says, has helped us see more clearly the importance of “ordinary” people who, though far from the limelight, exercise patience and offer hope every day. In this, they resemble St. Joseph, “the man who goes unnoticed, a daily, discreet and hidden presence,” who nonetheless played “an incomparable role in the history of salvation.”

Bishop Joseph E. Strickland is encouraging all in the Diocese of Tyler to participate in this special year and a number of activities and celebrations are planned (see below).

Year of St. Joseph Resources

Who is St. Joseph

The spouse of Mary the mother of Jesus and the legal father of Jesus according to Jewish law, Joseph is a model of humility and obedience to God’s will. He followed God’s instructions, given by angels in dreams, and took the pregnant Mary into his home as his wife, protected her and Jesus at the child’s birth in Bethlehem through the family’s sojourn in Egypt, and provided for them as a carpenter in Nazareth. His feast day of March 19, which was celebrated locally as early as the ninth century, became a universal feast in the fifteenth century, when it was placed on the liturgical calendar. Pope Pius IX named St. Joseph Patron of the Universal Church in 1870; he is also the patron saint of carpenters, the dying, and workers. (Source: CNS)

Diocese of Tyler Events and Celebrations

Feb. 15 to March 19: 33 Day Consecration to St. Joseph
Invitation to participate in this devotion based on the book by Father Don Calloway.

Feb. 24: 34th Anniversary of the Diocese of Tyler
Offer the Mass for the Dedication of a Church with special prayers for St. Joseph’s intercession for the Church of Tyler.

March: Month of St. Joseph
Offer reflection on Joseph as a model of faith, hope and charity practiced under trying circumstances and a model of the heroic practice of virtue.

March 19: Solemnity of St. Joseph
Offer the Mass of the day with reflection and catechesis on St. Joseph’s role in the work of our redemption.

March 25: Solemnity of the Annunciation
Offer the Mass of the day with reflection and catechesis on the Second Divine Person of the Trinity assuming human nature, under the care of Mary and Joseph, with special prayers for the sanctity of all life.

May 1: Optional Memorial of St. Joseph the Worker
Offer the Mass of the day with reflection and catechesis on social obligations, with special prayers for workers and those laboring in poverty.

June 6: Solemnity of Corpus Christi
Offer the Mass of the day with reflection and catechesis on the role of priests as fathers and custodians of the Eucharist, as St. Joseph was committed to loving and protecting Jesus.

November: Month of the Souls in Purgatory
Offer special prayers and catechesis on the role of St. Joseph as the model of the pious believer who receives grace at the moment of death.

Prayers and Devotions

  • Pray the prayer “To you, O blessed Joseph” (Ad te, beate Ioseph).
  • Pray the Litany of St. Joseph on Wednesdays.
  • Recite the Chaplet of St. Joseph, recalling the seven agonies and seven joys of Joseph.
  • Prayer the prayer of Pope Francis to St. Joseph (see below).
  • Perform a corporal or spiritual work of mercy.
  • Entrust your work daily to the protection of St. Joseph.
  • Priests can offer the Votive Mass of St. Joseph on Wednesdays – the day ascribed to him in tradition.
  • Make a pilgrimage to churches in the diocese under the patronage of St. Joseph – St. Joseph in Clarksville, St. Joseph in Marshall, and St. Joseph the Worker in Tyler; and under the patronage of the Immaculate Conception – the Cathedral in Tyler, Immaculate Conception in Jefferson, and Immaculate Conception in Moral.
  • Offer Holy Hours with special prayers for St. Joseph’s intercession.
  • St. Joseph’s Tables and Altars are a popular devotion on March 19.
  • Study Pope Francis’ Apostolic Letter “With a Father’s Heart” (Patris corde).
  • The St. Philip Institute will be working on special resources for this year.

Prayer to St. Joseph by Pope Francis

Hail, Guardian of the Redeemer,
Spouse of the Blessed Virgin Mary.
To you God entrusted his only Son;
in you Mary placed her trust;
with you Christ became man.

Blessed Joseph, to us too,
show yourself a father and guide us in the path of life.
Obtain for us grace, mercy, and courage,
and defend us from every evil. Amen.