St Joseph the Worker

On the first of May all the students of St Joseph’s Catholic School (where I serve as chaplain) have the day off to go out in the community to do charitable service.
It was great to see 460 kids gather with their household to head out in convoy across the town. They were involved in house fix up for the poor, working with homeless shelters, centers for disabled children, community clean up, and a whole range of other activities.
Most groups don’t do more than a few hours’ work, but it is a valuable part of their education at St Joseph’s to realize that the whole reason for their education there is to embark on a life of service.
This should be one of the distinctives of a Catholic education: Through their education in Catholic School students should become aware of the necessity of service, and then begin to seek their vocation in life. We try to open their eyes at Middle school and high school level to the fact that with a vocation life has meaning and direction.
Without a vocation what will you do with your life? Make money? You sad, sad person…:-)
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  • Father, your comments about the benefits of a Catholic education i.e. preparing for a life of service are spot on. Here in Australia, Catholic schools are partly funded by the government but are essentially independent.People of all faiths try to enrol their children because of the issues of values education and service as well as discipline and order. For myself I wanted my children imbued with the faith but unfortunately the faulty catechesis around these days makes that somewhat of a forlorn hope. Nevertheless, Saint Joseph is right up their on my list of all time favorite saints.The priest who trained me as an altar server was named Joseph, when I topped the Christian Doctrine class in grade three my prize was a framed print of Saint Joseph similar to that in your post (I still have it) and finally my secondary school was Saint Joseph’s. In addition I was a fairly ordinary student in those days and regarded Saint Joseph of Cupertino (in this instance) as a bit of a patron saint. Keep up the good work

  • “Without a vocation what will you do with your life? Make money?”This reminds me of a turning point in my life. I was 30, and making way more money than I knew what to do with. I liked cars, and owned 3, each of which were fun in different ways. Fun, fun, fun.Then one day I looked at the 3 of ’em sitting there, and for the first time, they seemed silly & excessive. I thought, “Is this going to be your life? Having a bunch of cars?”That abrupt change in my worldview set me on a different path for the rest of my life…thank you, God.

  • My grandmother had a cross stitch saying over her kitchen table: ‘Only one life ’twill soon be past. Only what’s done for God will last.’Maybe a little corny, but too true.

  • Anonymous

    I work in a very poor area, with like 80% poverty rate. People come to see me so they can do something to go about making more money. Government welfare is soul killing if you stay on it too long. Don’t knock making money; it enables families to get off the government teat. Making money seems kind of ungodly to those who can already do so or already have it; but when you’re poor, being able to make money enough to support your family is a powerful dream. Never forget it.kentuckyliz