St. Joseph and the Family
God’s plan is that indissoluble marriage be the foundation of the family which is the basic unit of society. The family has its origin in that same love with which the Creator embraces the created world. Jesus entered into human history through the family. He fully discloses man to himself beginning with the family in which He chose to be born and to grow up. Jesus appeals to “the beginning,” seeing at the very origins of creation God’s plan, on which the family is based, and, through the family, the entire history of humanity.
Our Lady of America and St. Joseph gave Sister Mildred several messages concerning the family. She said that it was made known to her interiorly that her mission was to converge towards the sanctification of the family.
On November 8, 1954, Our Lady spoke to her in these words:
It is the wish of my Son that fathers and mothers strive to imitate me and my chaste spouse in our holy life at Nazareth. We practiced the simple virtues of family life, Jesus our Son being the center of all our love and activity. The Holy Trinity dwelt with us in a manner far surpassing anything that can ever be imagined. For ours was the earthly paradise where once again God walked among men.
As in our little home no sin was to be found, so it is the wish of the Heart of my Son and my Immaculate Heart that sin should, as far as possible, be unheard of in the homes of our children.
The Divine Trinity will dwell in your midst only if you are faithful in practicing the virtues of our life at Nazareth. Then, you also, my children, you also will become another paradise. God will then walk among you and you will have peace.
On the eve of his own feast, March 19, 1958, St. Joseph made his own appearance to Sister Mildred and proclaimed the unique privilege that was bestowed on him as the Virgin-Father of Jesus. He said that all fatherhood is blest in his fatherhood. He asked that our family life be modeled on that of the Holy Family, with Jesus at the center of all its activity. He wants us to teach our children well. He said:
Dear child, I was king in the little home of Nazareth, for I sheltered within it the Prince of Peace and the Queen of Heaven. To me they looked for protection and sustenance, and I did not fail them. I received from them the deepest love and reverence, for in me they saw Him Whose place I took over them.
So the head of the family must be loved, obeyed, and respected, and in return be a true father and protector to those under his care. In honoring in a special way my fatherhood, you also honor Jesus and Mary. The Divine Trinity has placed into our keeping the peace of the world.
The imitation of the Holy Family, my child, of the virtues we practiced in our little home at Nazareth is the way for all souls to that peace which comes from God alone and which none other can give.
On the evening of the Feast of the Most Holy Rosary, October 7, 1957, Our Lady again appeared and said. “Making the Rosary a family prayer is very pleasing to me. I ask that all families strive to do so. But be careful to say it with great devotion, meditating on each mystery and striving to imitate in your daily lives the virtues depicted therein. Live the mysteries of the Rosary as I lived them, and it will become a chain binding you to me forever. They who are found in the circle of my Rosary will never be lost. I myself will lead them at death to the throne of my Son, to be eternally united to Him.”
On March 30, St. Joseph again appeared and declared himself the protector of the Church and the home. He stated that Jesus and Mary desired that his pure heart, so long hidden and unknown, be now honored in a special way. He asked that we honor him on the First Wednesday of every month and pray the Joyful mysteries of the Rosary in memory of his life with Jesus and Mary. St. Joseph confirmed his enormous role in God’s plan of salvation, shared with his holy Spouse, the Mother of Jesus. (Diary 26-31) .
One way of honoring St. Joseph’s request to model our family life on that of the Holy Family is to pray as a family. Our Lady told Sister that “Making the Rosary a family prayer is very pleasing to me. I ask that all families strive to do so.” (Diary 21) She also promised her protection to the family that honors her. Sister said that “. . . Our Lady also requested a picture or statue of herself as she appeared [as Our Lady of America] . . . to be honored and venerated in every Christian home.” (Diary 26).