As we have seen, the skeptical and hostile in the Gospels refer to Jesus as the carpenter’s son. These same critics say they know His mother and brethren. Ironically, their very boast shows they know nothing of the secret of this family. The divine purpose has been perfectly attained; the mystery of the Incarnation has remained hidden until the time set for its revelation.
The principle of normalcy assures us that on the surface, life in the Holy Family’s humble dwelling was routine and ordinary. They saw Mary at the well and around the house. They saw Jesus as He grew from boy to man on the village’s streets, in the fields at play with companions, at work, and always in the synagogue at prayer and instruction. They saw Joseph going out to meet customers and get supplies. After delivering his products, he would return, not with coins, but with goods received in barter. Perhaps Jesus went along to assist him. Everyone recognized that Joseph was a just man.
The townsfolk observed all these ordinary, mundane things, but what they could not have known was that, in reality, this quiet home was the beachhead for the reconquest of the world from the enemy, the hinge of all history, the womb of the Church.
–from Go to Joseph by Fr. Richard W. Gilsdorf
I’m reading a biography of St Andre Bessette, Brother Andre: Friend of the Suffering, Apostle of Saint Joseph, because Jen’s Saints Name Generator picked him as my saint for the year. I’m really enjoying getting to know him as I visited St Joseph’s Oratory when I was visiting my brother in Montreal about a decade ago. And it’s really not possible to draw closer to Brother Andre without being drawn to St Joseph and so when I saw this little booklet that has been floating around our house for more than a year, I knew I had to read it too.
So I read a little bit here and there, bouncing back and forth between several different books. Tonight this passage jumped out and grabbed me and I just had to share it.
The painting is used on the cover of the Go to Joseph book. Isn’t it lovely? Just what I imagine when I hear the words “beachhead” and “reconquest.”