But our saintly Lady, who was the humblest of the humble, and whose humility was not to be overcome, prayed St. Joseph not to pay her such honors... They had also humble disputes respecting! their servile employments
But our saintly Lady, who was the humblest of the humble, and whose humility was not to be overcome, prayed St. Joseph not to pay her such honors as to bow the knee to her. This veneration, she said, was doubtless due to the Lord, whom she bore in her bosom; but while He remained there, the person of Christ could not be distinguished from her own. The saint, yielding to her humble desires, rendered this worship to the Lord, who was in the bosom of Mary, and to her as His mother, only when un- perceived by her. They had also humble disputes respecting! their servile employments. St. Joseph could LIFE OF ST. JOSEPH. 103 not consent to allow our amiable Mistress to perform them, and strove to prevent it On her part, she did what she could, but waile she was retired in her oratory the saint found time to do many things, and thus our sweet Lady was frus- trated in her desires to be the servant. At these times she addressed her meek complaints to the Lord, and prayed him to oblige her spouse not to hinder her in the exercise of humility. This virtue is so agreeable at the tribunal of God, that we ask for no common grace whea we pray for it; for humility imparts a cer tain greatness to all things, and inclines God to clemency. The Divine Majesty hearkened to the request of our blessed Lady, and his guar- dian angel said, interiorly, to the blessed St Joseph, “ Do not frustrate the humble desires of © her who is above all creatures in heaven or on earth. Permit her to serve you in external things, and preserve for her in your interior the greatest reverence. Render to the Word made man, in all times and in all places, the homage that is due to Him. You can, meanwhile, assist his Mother, and honor ee the Lord of the universe who is within her.” Having received these orders from ‘the Most High, St. Joseph no longer refused her humble exercises to our sweet Lady. Thus both offered 104 LIFE OF ST. JOSEPH. to God the sacrifice of their will. The most pure Mary, in practising her profound humility, and faithful obedience to her spouse; and St. Joseph, by obedience to the Most High, with a holy confusion to see himself served by her whom he recognized as mistress of the universe and mother of the Creator, Thus our saint was compensated for the hu- mility which he could not exervise; for to see himself served as he was humiliated him far more, and obliged him to abase himself still more profoundly in contempt of himself. In these dispositions St. Joseph meditated upon the Lord, whom the august Mary bore in her chaste bosom, adoring and rendering to Him honor and glory. Then, in recompense for his sanctity . and his respect, mingled with fear, the Infant God, made man, sometimes manifested himself - in an admirable manner. He saw Him in the bosom of His most pure Mother, as through a luminous crystal. Afterwards, our incomparable Lady conversed more familiarly with her blessed spouse upon the mysteries of the incarnation, for she knew that he was now informed of the secrets of the hypostatic union of the two natures, divine and human, within her virginal bosom. No tongue can relate the celestial discourses that were held between the blessed Virgin and LIFE OF ST. JOSEPH. 105 St. Joseph.- And who can describe the effects produced on the gentle and pious heart of this holy man, on finding himself the spouse of her who was the veritable motber of his Creator, and to see her performing for him the duties of a simple servant ?