I grew up in the shadow of the Appalachian Mountains, in the State of West Virginia, USA. My father was a coal miner, and it was a constant struggle for him to keep us supplied with the thing that most people take for granted. My parents were proud people who made their own way. Saints standing piously with hands folded in prayer meant little to them. Life was about doing what had to be done on a daily basis.
I think of Saint Joseph as an honest, hard-working young man, toiling daily in his little carpenter shop. I doubt if he made fine furniture, but instead chiseled out the crude furnishings of the poor man's world. He surely would have earned his daily bread - the simple meal prepared by Mary for her beloved family. Not an exciting existence, but one blessed by God. Saint Joseph's oneness with us keeps him dear to our heart - a fellow human being, striving to make the world a better place by improving the little corner where God had placed him.
Can we do anything nobler with our lives?
Sr. Phyllis Carpenter, SAC/ USA