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20 March

A nativity scene from El Salvador.

When Joseph awoke, he did as the angel of the Lord had commanded him and took his wife into his home.

Matthew 1:24

Today we celebrate the Feast of St Joseph, a somewhat enigmatic biblical character. Other than the infancy narratives, very little is written about Joseph. Interestingly, we never hear anything Joseph says. He does not speak at all in the gospels.

He is, however, a man of action. He obeys the angel’s command and takes Mary as his wife; he travels to Bethlehem for the census and finds the family shelter and he takes his family to safety in Egypt. Though he may not utter any words, his generous, courageous, and loving actions speak loudly of his faith and hope.

Like St Joseph, Dr Juliana Musariri, a medical doctor who manages a hospital in Zimbabwe, puts her faith into action in a very practical way. As she explains it herself: “Helping people here is like helping my mother and brother. As I see them coming, it is like seeing my own family, allowing them to go unattended affects my emotions, I feel for them, but, once I do something for them, I feel happy, satisfied and content in a mission fulfilled. I see my family in the people who come here.” 

This Lent, let’s all look for ways that our actions can speak louder than our words, in our care for our global family.

Lent prayer

God of all,
may we follow the example of St Joseph
and always be ready to put our faith into action.


Think about how you could serve others in your local community or in the wider world this Lent. You might like to have a look at our A-Z of fundraising.