Son of David, descendant of the Prophet- King; of him who in vision beheld the eternal reign of the Messiah. Joseph, let the recollection of thy origin recall to thee the wondrous things that shall be effected in thy line ! The prediction of thy ancestor is about to be accomplished in the womb of the Virgin of Jesse, co-descendant with thee of the line of David, the Holy Virgin whose fate is linked with thine! Fear not, thou son of David, to remain with thy spouse, Virgin Daughter of David's royal line! Thou art worthy of her, and to thee is confided that sacred deposit, the divine treasure of her virginity! True, it is by the operation of the Holy Ghost that she has become a mother, but she ceases not to be thy spouse. She and her Son are thine ! An orphan here below, the Son of the Most High, and Mary's Son needs an earthly father, this father thou shalt be, for it is thy right: Noli timere accipere Mariam conjugem tuam.
Is anxiety at its climax, difficulty insuperable, do thou thy best. Reflect, seek for a way to extricate thyself and then resolve: Haec autem eo cogitante; but act with calmness, like Joseph, in spite of anxiety, sleep thou in peace in the arms of a living Providence. The night of trial shall usher in a brilliant day. You fell asleep in sorrow, you shall awake in joy!
Watchword.—Hope ever; God is faithful.
6. Saint Joseph and Saint Ignatius.
Saint Ignatius, founder of the Society of Jesus, was ever mindful of Saint Joseph. In his " Exercises" he proposes the Saint to our consideration in relation to our Lord's hidden life. In his oratory was an image of Saint Joseph, before which he loved to pray, and when any extraordinary difficulty occurred, it was on this spot that Saint Ignatius put it into writing, in order to obtain a happy solution.