I have a strong devotion to St. Joseph, largely influenced by my patron Saint, St. Teresa of Avila, who had an unwavering devotion to him.
She said: "To other Saints Our Lord seems to have given power to succor us in some special necessity- but to this glorious Saint, I know by experience, He has given the power to help us in all. Our Lord would have us understand that as He was subject to St. Joseph on earth-for St. Joseph, bearing the title of father and being His guardian, could command Him- so now in Heaven Our Lord grants all his petitions."
Have confidence in St. Joseph! As they said in Egypt in the Old Testament, "Go to Joseph!" He can help us in our temporal needs, but he is also the patron of the dying. How holy and blessed his death must have been, dying in the arms of Jesus and Mary!
St. Alphonsus Ligouri said: "Since we all must die, we should cherish a special devotion to St. Joseph, that he may obtain for us a happy death. All Christians regard him as the advocate of the dying who had honoured him during their life, and that for three reasons:
"First, because Jesus Christ loved him not only as a friend, but as a father, and on this account his mediation is far more efficacious than that of any other Saint.
"Second, because St. Joseph has obtained special power against the evil spirits, who tempt us with redoubled vigour at the hour of death.
"Third, the assistance given St. Joseph at his death by Jesus and Mary obtained for him the right to secure a holy and peaceful death for his servants. Hence if they invoke him at the hour of death, he will not only help them but he will also obtain for them the assistance of Jesus and Mary."
March 19 we celebrate the feast day of St. Joseph. This week , to honour him, I offer this prayer, which I pray after the Rosary:
To thee, O blessed Joseph, do we have recourse in our tribulations, 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.
It is worthy of note that this is one of the few prayers which still has a partial indulgence attached to it, although the translation offered in the new Handbook of Indulgences has been so simplified as to lose a lot of the reverence that this translation, from the Racclota, inspires.