A Novena to Saint Joseph

Today we have our  Novena for Saint Joseph, to begin on March 10, and complete the Eve of his feast day. I’m trying to restore our many other posts on this great saint, favorite of readers and favorite of our family too.


The feast day of our favorite saint, dear Saint Joseph is coming up soon and in preparation we have a Novena for St. Joseph from two of Father Lasance’s Prayer Books. First, Father Lasance’s “Prayer Book for Religious: A Complete Manual of Prayers and Devotions for the Use of the Members of All Religious Communities” from 1904. The second book is “With God: A Book of Prayers and Reflections” from 1911. In the latter book, we note,

“The Sovereign Pontiff, Pius IX, by a rescript of the Sacred Congregation of Indulgences, Nov. 28, 1876, granted to all the faithful who, with contrite heart, devoutly make at any time during the year the novena in honor of St. Joseph, spouse of Mary most holy, with any formula of prayer, provided it be approved by competent ecclesiastical authority, an indulgence of 300 days, once a day; a plenary indulgence, during the course of the novena, if, being truly penitent, having confessed and communicated, they pray for the intention of the Sovereign Pontiff.”

Thus, we may use any approved prayer to St. Joseph for our novena and this is usually coupled with the Litany to Saint Joseph, as Father Lasance does. And so we offer several prayers to St. Joseph for you to choose from followed by St. Joseph’s Litany. In our own family, we pray a perpetual Novena to St. Joseph for the spiritual healing of our family, our parish and the Church, which consists of the Litany followed by the Memorare to St. Joseph. But in March, his month, we also include more prayers and devotions such as the ones we offer today. If you begin St. Joseph’s Novena on March 10, it will conclude on March 18, the Eve of his feast day, which is a good time to renew your Consecration also. An excellent practice is to begin each day with the Consecration to the Immaculate Heart of Mary, Consecration to the Sacred Heart of Jesus and then follow with St. Joseph’s brief Consecration (as in the sidebar on right). When combined with Spiritual Communion (for the many of us who are not able to attend Mass daily), you have a great way to start each day.

NOTE: This year, St. Joseph’s feast day is observed the following day, due to falling on a Sunday, however, I am keeping the Novena as always, so that we can conclude it with Holy Mass and confession and Holy Communion.


Choose any one, then follow with the Litany.


O glorious descendant of the kings of Juda, inheritor of all the virtues of Patriarchs; just and happy St. Joseph, listen to our prayers. Thou art our glorious protector, and shalt ever be, after Jesus and Mary, the object of our most profound veneration and tender confidence. Thou art a hidden saint, though one of the greatest of saints, and art especially the patron of interior souls.

In union with all those who have ever been most devoted to thee, we now dedicate ourselves to thy service, beseeching thee, for the sake of Jesus Christ, Who vouchsafed to love and obey thee as a Son, to become a father to us, and to obtain for us the filial respect, confidence, and love of children toward thee. O powerful advocate of all Christians, whose intercession, as St. Teresa assures us, has never been found to fail, deign to intercede for us now and to implore for us the particular intentions of the novena. (Specify them.)

Present us, O great saint, to the adorable Trinity with Whom thou hadst so glorious and so intimate a correspondence. Obtain that we may never efface by sin the sacred image according to the likeness of which we were created. Beg for us that our divine Redeemer may enkindle in our hearts, and in all hearts, the fire of His love, and infuse therein the virtues of His adorable infancy, His purity, simplicity, obedience, and humility. Obtain for us likewise a lively devotion to thy Virgin spouse, and protect us so powerfully in life and in death that we may have the happiness of dying, as thou didst, in the friendship of our Creator, and under the immediate protection of the Mother of God.


Great St. Joseph, thou generous dispenser of immortal riches, behold us prostrate at thy feet, beseeching thee to receive us as thy servants and as thy children. Next to the Sacred Hearts of Jesus and Mary, of which thou art the faithful copy, we acknowledge that there is no heart more tender, more compassionate, than thine. What then have we to fear, or rather, for what should we not hope, if thou dost deign to be our benefactor, our master, our model, our father, and our intercessor!

Refuse not, then, the favor we ask of thee, O powerful protector! ( _______ ).

We ask it of thee by the love thou hast for Jesus and Mary. Into, thy hands we commit our souls and bodies, but above all, the last moment of our lives. May we, after having honored, imitated, and served thee on earth, eternally sing with thee the mercies of Jesus and Mary. Amen.


To thee, O blessed Joseph, do we have recourse in our tribulation, and, having implored the help of thy thrice-holy Spouse, we confidently invoke thy patronage also. By that charity wherewith thou wast united to the immaculate Virgin Mother of God, and by that fatherly affection with which thou didst embrace the Child Jesus, we beseech thee and we humbly pray, that thou wouldst look graciously upon the inheritance which Jesus Christ hath purchased by His Blood, and assist us in our needs by thy power and strength. Most watchful guardian of the Holy Family, protect the chosen people of Jesus Christ; keep far from us, most loving father, all blight of error and corruption: mercifully assist us from Heaven, most mighty defender, in this our conflict with the powers of darkness; and, even as of old thou didst rescue the Child Jesus from the supreme peril of His life, so now defend God’s Holy Church from the snares of the enemy and from all adversity; keep us one and all under thy continual protection, that we may be supported by thine example and thine assistance, may be enabled to lead a holy life, die a happy death and come at last to the possession of everlasting blessedness in Heaven. Amen. (By Pope Leo XIII, September 21, 1889 for the October devotions)


Lord, have mercy on us.
Christ, have mercy on us.
Lord, have mercy on us. Christ, hear us.
Christ, graciously hear us.
God the Father of Heaven, have mercy on us.
God the Son, Redeemer of the world, have mercy on us.
God the Holy Ghost, have mercy on us.
Holy Trinity, One God, have mercy on us.
Holy Mary, pray for us.
Saint Joseph, pray for us.
Illustrious son of David, pray for us.
Light of the patriarchs, pray for us.
Spouse of the Mother of God, pray for us.
Chaste guardian of the Virgin, pray for us.
Foster-father of the Son of God, pray for us.
Watchful defender of Christ, pray for us.
Head of the Holy Family, pray for us.
Joseph most just, pray for us.
Joseph most chaste, pray for us.
Joseph most prudent, pray for us.
Joseph most valiant, pray for us.
Joseph most obedient, pray for us.
Joseph most faithful, pray for us.
Mirror of patience, pray for us.
Lover of poverty, pray for us.
Model of workmen, pray for us.
Glory of domestic life, pray for us.
Guardian of virgins, pray for us.
Pillar of families, pray for us.
Solace of the afflicted, pray for us.
Hope of the sick, pray for us.
Patron of the dying, pray for us.
Terror of demons, pray for us.
Protector of Holy Church, pray for us.
Lamb of God, Who takest away the sins of the world, spare us, O Lord.
Lamb of God, Who takest away the sins of the world, graciously hear us, O Lord.
Lamb of God, Who takest away the sins of the world, have mercy on us.
V. He made him the lord of His household.
R. And prince over all his possessions.

Let Us Pray.
O God, Who in Thine ineffable providence didst choose Blessed Joseph to be the spouse of Thy most Holy Mother, grant that as we venerate him as our protector on earth, we may deserve to have him as our intercessor in Heaven, Thou Who livest and reignest forever and ever .Amen.

Because we can never do too much for this wonderful saint, who was chosen by Our Lord to be His own foster-father, we offer a beautiful devotion to the Joys and Sorrows of Saint Joseph.


I. Most chaste husband of Holy Mary, glorious St. Joseph, great was the travail and anguish of thy heart when, in sore perplexity, thou didst feel inclined to put away thy stainless spouse; but unspeakable was thy joy when the angel revealed to thee the high mystery of the Incarnation.

By this, thy sorrow and thy joy, we pray thee, comfort our souls now and in their dying agony with the sweet consolation of a well-spent life, and a death like unto thine own, in the embrace of Jesus and of Mary.
Our Father, Hail Mary, Glory be to the Father.

II. Thrice happy patriarch, glorious St. Joseph, chosen to be the foster-father of the Word made man, keen was the pain thou didst feel when thou didst see the infant Jesus born in abject poverty; but thy pain was suddenly changed into heavenly joy when upon thee burst the harmony of the angel-choirs, and thou didst behold the glory of that refulgent night.

By this thy sorrow and thy joy, we pray thee, obtain for us that when the journey of our life is over, we too may pass to that blessed land where we shall hear the angel-chants, and enjoy the brightness of celestial glory.
Our Father, Hail Mary, Glory be to the Father.

III. O thou who wast ever most obedient in fulfilling the law of God, glorious St. Joseph! when, at His circumcision, the infant Saviour’s precious blood was shed, thy heart was pierced through and through; but with the name of Jesus came again to thee new life and heavenly joy.

By this thy sorrow and thy joy, obtain for us that, freed in life from the vile yoke of sin, we too may die with joy, with the sweet name of Jesus in our hearts and on our lips.
Our Father, Hail Mary, Glory be to the Father.

IV. Faithful saint, who wast called to take part in man’s redemption, glorious St. Joseph, Simeon’s prophecy of the coming woes of Jesus and of Mary filled thy soul with agony like death: but thy soul was filled with blessedness when he foretold salvation and glorious resurrection to innumerable souls.

By this thy sorrow and thy joy, help us with thy prayers to be of those who, by the merits of Jesus and His virgin Mother, shall be partakers of the glorious resurrection.
Our Father, Hail Mary, Glory be to the Father.

V. Watchful guardian, bosom-friend of the Incarnate Son of God, glorious St. Joseph, how didst thou toil to nurture and to serve the Son of the Most High, especially in the flight into Egypt; but far greater was thy joy in having with thee God Himself, and in seeing Egypt’s idols fall to the earth!

By this thy sorrow and thy joy, obtain for us to keep aloof from the infernal tyrant, quitting all dangerous occasions of sin, that all earthly idols may be cast out from our hearts, and that, employed in the service of Jesus and Mary, we may ever live for them alone, and with them calmly die.
Our Father, Hail Mary, Glory be to the Father.

VI. Angel on earth, glorious St. Joseph, while thou didst marvel at seeing the King of heaven obedient to thy bidding, fear of the tyrant mingled with thy joy when thou didst bring him back from Egypt; but, reassured by the angel, thou didst dwell at Nazareth with glad heart, in the sweet company of Jesus and Mary.

By this thy sorrow and thy joy, obtain for us that, with hearts set free from every hurtful fear, we too may taste the quiet of a tranquil conscience, safely dwelling with Jesus and with Mary, and one day die within their loving arms.
Our Father. Hail Mary, Glory be to the Father.

VII. Pattern of all holiness, glorious St. Joseph, without fault of thine, thou didst lose the holy Child, Jesus, and for three days, to thy great sorrow, didst seek for Him, until, with joy unspeakable, thou didst find thy Life amid the Doctors in the Temple.

By this thy sorrow and thy joy, we pray thee with all our heart, stand between us and danger, that we may never lose Jesus by mortal sin; but if, to our shame and disgrace, we lose Him, may we seek Him with such ceaseless grief that we may find Him propitious to us, especially at the hour of our death, and thus go to enjoy Him in heaven, and there with thee sing His divine mercy for ever!
Our Father, Hail Mary, Glory be to the Father.

Antiphon: Jesus was about thirty years old, being, as was supposed, the son of Joseph.
V. Pray for us, blessed Joseph,
R. That we may be made worthy of the promises of Christ.

Let us pray.
O God, Who in Thine ineffable providence didst vouchsafe to choose blessed Joseph to be the spouse of Thy most holy Mother: grant, we beseech Thee, that we may be made worthy to receive him for our intercessor in heaven, whom on earth we venerate as our holy protector. Who livest and reignest world without end. Amen.

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