Saint Joseph figures prominently in devotion to The Flame of Love of the Immaculate Heart of Mary. Jesus told Elizabeth Kindelmann, “Your most worthy patron is Saint Joseph. Do not forget him, invoke him every day. He will gladly help making our Cause a success.” (April 10, 1962, The Spiritual Diary (First Edition), p25).
Mary later added, “Saint Joseph will accompany you. Turn to him for help. He is kind. Ask him for his active protection.” (October 4, 1962, The Spiritual Diary (First Edition), p89).
Thus, we are delighted at Pope Francis’ declaration of a year of Saint Joseph. Several indulgences are associated with this extraordinary year and many will be familiar to The Flame of Love.
The plenary indulgence is granted to the faithful under the usual conditions (sacramental confession, Eucharistic Communion, and prayer for the Pope’s intentions) to Christians who, with a spirit detached from any sin, participate in the Year of St. Joseph on these occasions and manners indicated by the Apostolic Penitentiary:
The plenary indulgence is granted to those who will meditate for at least 30 minutes on the Lord’s Prayer, or take part in a Spiritual Retreat of at least one day that includes a meditation on St. Joseph. “St. Joseph, an authentic man of faith, invites us”, the decree reads, “to rediscover our filial relationship with the Father, to renew fidelity to prayer, to listen and correspond with profound discernment to God’s will.”
The indulgence can also be obtained by those who, following St. Joseph’s example, will perform a spiritual or corporal work of mercy. St. Joseph “encourages us to rediscover the value of silence, prudence and loyalty in carrying out our duties,” the decree notes.
The recitation of the Holy Rosary in families and among engaged couples is another way of obtaining indulgences, in order that “all Christian families may be stimulated to recreate the same atmosphere of intimate communion, love and prayer that was in the Holy Family.”
Everyone who entrusts their daily activity to the protection of St. Joseph, and every faithful who invokes the intercession of St. Joseph so that those seeking work can find dignifying work can also obtain the plenary indulgence. On 1 May 1955, Pope Pius XII instituted the feast of St. Joseph “with the intent that the dignity of work be recognized by all, and that it inspires social life and laws, based on the fair distribution of rights and duties.”
The plenary indulgence is also granted to the faithful who will recite the Litany to St. Joseph (for the Latin tradition), or the Akathistos to St. Joseph (for the Byzantine tradition), or any other prayer to St. Joseph proper to the other liturgical traditions, for the persecuted Church ad intra and ad extra, and for the relief of all Christians suffering all forms of persecution. Because, the decree notes, “the flight of the Holy Family to Egypt shows us that God is there where man is in danger, where man suffers, where he runs away, where he experiences rejection and abandonment.”
Through the intercession of Saint Joseph may we respond immediately and lovingly to every slightest wish of our Lord and Lady and find grace and favor before our Bishops and Pastors to spread devotion to The Flame of Love of Mary’s Immaculate Heart!