Baptism takes care of original sin and all actual sin committed up to that point. But what about sins committed after Baptism? Saint John admonishes us to deal forthrightly with our sin: “If we say we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just, and will forgive our sins and cleanse us from all unrighteousness” (1 John 1:8–9).
God provides food that is needful. In the Old Testament there are three examples of God’s provision of food for his people that reveal important truths about the spiritual food he gives us in the Eucharist: the Passover, the daily provision of manna for God’s people in the desert, and the Todah sacrifice in the temple.
We can draw close to St. Joseph by sharing with him the littleness of everyday life. Most of the life of Jesus, the Incarnate Son of God, does not appear in Sacred Scripture. In fact, the vast majority of His life does not appear in Sacred Scripture. Rather, in the ordinary littleness of everyday life, He simply shared life with Mary and Joseph. In this way, St. Joseph appears as the father of the littleness of ordinariness.
The Incarnation is the center of all God’s plans for mankind. Two millennia ago, the Word became flesh. He dwelt among us for thirty-three years, completed His Paschal mystery, rose from the dead, and forty days later left this earth in His Ascension. However, He still wished to remain among us so that we could encounter Him in His humanity with its life-giving and medicinal power, and therefore He established the sacraments of the Church to be the principal means of encounter with His humanity between His Ascension and His Second Coming. St. Leo the Great said: “What was to be seen of our Redeemer has passed over into the Sacraments,” so that “faith might be more perfect and more firm.”
The feasts of Holy Week—Holy Thursday, Good Friday, Holy Saturday, and Easter—are fulfillments of the three spring Jewish feasts with which they originally coincided. We refer to the three great liturgies of Holy Week—the Mass of the Lord’s Supper on Holy Thursday evening, Good Friday services, and the Easter Vigil—as the Holy Triduum. In the year of Christ’s death, the Jewish Passover on 14 Nisan would have begun at sundown on Thursday, the same evening as the celebration of the Last Supper and been completed at sundown on Good Friday, the day of His death.
It took the Church nearly 1,500 years (in 1481) to establish a liturgical feast for St. Joseph and nearly 1,900 years (in 1889) to publish the first encyclical about him. This encyclical came just after he was officially raised up to a great status in devotion by Bl. Pius IX, who officially declared him the protector of the universal Church in 1870. Every subsequent pope has published a significant teaching on St. Joseph, and many of them have inscribed that teaching in the official liturgical practice of the Roman Rite.