An upcoming speaker series is inviting young adults to discover “a newfound love for St. Joseph” as “a powerful role model.”
The archdiocesan Office for Ministry with Young Adults (OMYA) and the young adults group of the Cathedral Basilica of SS. Peter and Paul will kick off the four-week series Nov. 10 with a 6:30 p.m. holy hour at the Cathedral. Following the holy hour, Father Matthew Biedrzycki, the Cathedral parish’s parochial vicar, will give a presentation starting at 7:30 p.m.
The series will continue with holy hours and talks on Nov. 10, Nov. 23 and Dec. 1, featuring respectively Dominican Father Hyacinth Cordell, Legionary of Christ Father Reuben Nuxoll and Dr. Kelly Anderson, assistant professor of Sacred Scripture at St. Charles Borromeo Seminary in Wynnewood.
In preparation for the series, participants are invited to read “Consecration to St. Joseph: The Wonders of Our Spiritual Father” by Father Donald Calloway, a priest of the Marians of the Immaculate Conception. The book provides a 33-day program of Scripture, prayers and reflections to deepen readers’ appreciation for the foster father of Christ.
Throughout 2021, Catholics have observed a “Year of St. Joseph,” proclaimed by Pope Francis last December to mark the 150th anniversary of St. Joseph’s designation as the patron of the universal church. In his apostolic letter “Patris Corde” (“With a father’s heart”), the pope described St. Joseph as “an intercessor, a support and a guide in times of trouble.”
The saint is especially that for those just embarking on adulthood, said OMYA director Matthew Davis.
“He is an incredible role model for young adults of a person trusting in the will of God, despite the unusual circumstances in which he was placed,” said Davis. “For young men in particular, he is a power role model of chastity, manhood and fatherhood, (and of) being faithful and protective towards … the Blessed Mother and Jesus.”
St. Joseph’s “silence, humility, loving protection” and good stewardship are all worthy of imitation, said OMYA assistant director David Serrano.
In Scripture, “he only says a few words, but the Bible describes how he was a just man and treated Mary and Jesus with respect,” said Serrano.
In addition, devotion to St. Joseph can counter modern individualism and selfishness, he said.
“In this world where we focus more on ourselves and what is good for us, he teaches us to be there for the other,” said Serrano.
The series’ holy hours are a welcome antidote to hectic everyday schedules, particularly as holiday season ramps up, Davis noted.
“With our cell phones always on us and with the busy lives we live, it is a great blessing to just sit in quiet, without doing, to just be with God,” he said. “In those quiet moments of worship and prayer, we can encounter God and rest in his presence. We can hear and see things that we normally miss by being too inundated with all the noise around us.”
Amid that stillness, a young person can expect to receive “many gifts,” said Serrano – including “the gift of paying attention to what the Lord is asking of them.”
Ultimately, he said, the goal is for young adults attending the series to “build a close relationship with Jesus.”
“My hope is that each one of them realize that no matter the circumstances, God is constantly speaking to them,” said Serrano – and, since Lord guided St. Joseph through dreams, he added, “including in their sleep!”
For more information on the Office for Ministry with Young Adults (OMYA) Consecration to St. Joseph, visit the OMYA website.
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