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Feast of St Joseph, Patron Saint of the Mill Hill Missionaries

Prayer to St Joseph written by St Teresa Benedicta of the Cross (Edith Stein) on March 19th, 1939, not long before she was arrested and transported to the extermination camp at Auschwitz.

St. Joseph, take care


Heavy and dark press lead-gray skies.

Is it night forever and will the light never shine again for us?

Has our Heavenly Father turned away from us?

The heart shrinks like in a nightmare –

is there no one who saves, who offers help?

Is there no savious anywhere able to help?

See, a ray of light breaks triumphantly through the clouds

like a father’s eye, mild and full of love

a bright star looks kindly down.

And so I take all that frightens us,

lift it up and put it in faithful hands:

take it –

St. Joseph, take care!

Violent storms are ravaging the country

Oak trees, deeply rooted in the heart of the earth, their crowns proudly raised to heaven

are now uprooted and cracked –

destruction and horrors everywhere.

Doesn’t the storm also shake the foundations of faith?

Will her holy pillars break?

Our arm is weak, who will support them?

Suppliant we raise our hands to you:

You, like Abraham, are a father of faith

strong in childlike simplicity, miracle worker

through obedience and pure sense:

Protect the holy temple of the new covenant

be its protector,

St. Joseph, take care!

If we have to roam abroad

seek shelter from door to door,

lead us as a faithful guide,

You, companion of the pure virgin,

You faithful, caring father of the divine child.

Bethlehem and Nazareth, even Egypt becomes our home

when you are with us.

Where you are there is heavenly blessing.

Childlike we follow you closely,

We confidently lay our hands in yours:

be our home, you:

St. Joseph, take care!

Edith Stein, March 19, 1939

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