As patron of the Church and head and provider of the Holy Family, Little Sisters of the Poor have a great devotion to St. Joseph. From the very beginning after we profess our vows, we are given a small statue of St. Joseph to keep in our pockets to remind us of this powerful intercessor.
Our Foundress St. Jeanne Jugan said that “God has greatly blessed me because I have always thanked his Providence.” And just as Joseph provided for his family, she took him to provide for her family.
So whenever we need something special, the Sisters seek St. Joseph’s help in prayer and some even place their petitions (a sample or a list of the needed items) in front of his statue to demonstrate our confidence in him. Everything is always provided. There are countless stories in the history of the Congregation of answered prayers.
One example happened last year when we were expecting a large group of student volunteers to stay with us. Mother Patricia had planned an ice cream social for them but our freezer broke down and all of the ice creamed melted. (It’s funny how ice cream melts faster than anything defrosts!) So she asked us, the begging Sisters, to go out and get some more. We asked St. Joseph to help, us knowing that everything would work out. When we stopped at the dairy, we were given a large box of individual gelatos. We were given more than enough for the whole Home including the students, Residents and more! St. Joseph always provides.
March 19th was the Feast of St. Joseph. There are several customs throughout the world to celebrate this event. Sicilians mark the day by serving a meatless meal and by putting out a St. Joseph’s Table full of breads and desserts.
At St. Mary’s Home we also celebrated by making a St. Joseph’s table filled with bread, cheese, and crackers. Students from the University of Nebraska, who are here for their Spring break, prepared the auditorium and set all the tables with china, napkins and flowers. It was beautiful. The students were joined by the Association Jeanne Jugan members to serve the Residents. The dinner came in several courses featuring a selection of meats, cheeses and wines followed by a wonderful tomato rice soup, breaded shrimp, meatballs, and coleslaw and freshly baked Italian bread. When everyone finished, Mother Patricia served Italian cookies and her mouthwatering Lemon Fluff Chiffon. It was great that our generous benefactors donated all of the food served that day. Thank you St. Joseph!
Top photo: Sr. Michael welcomes one of our newest Residents Teresa McFadden. Originally from Ireland, she is an amazing addition to St. Mary’s Home.
Bottom photo: Sr. Caroline sings Hail St. Joseph Hail with Residents.