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Manila – The Filipino Bishops have decided to create “The Men Of Saint Joseph” , an ecclesial association of “men consecrated to St. Joseph committed to living with Jesus” which, as Fides learned, will be launched in all the parishes of the country on December 8. Born to promote devotion to St. Joseph, as a precious inheritance for the life of the Filipino Church, on the occasion of the closing of the Year dedicated to the Saint, the lay association is the Filipino Church’s response to the Apostolic Letter of Pope Francis “Patris Corde”. The Filipino Bishops appreciated and addressed the Pope’s encouragement to the faithful and to reflect on the role of the putative father of Jesus “in caring for and loving our Savior with the heart of the Father”, and to live the father figure inspired by the saint. The members of the movement promote devotion to St. Joseph by imitating his virtues and offer opportunities for prayer, formation, charity, to foster the growth of human character, holiness and Christian fatherhood in the family and in the community, following in the footsteps of St. Joseph.
The Oblate priests of St. Joseph are assigned the task of spreading the movement among the laity, and of being spiritual guides of the new association, open to all male faithful, at least 18 years old, “willing to learn and engage in the practice of virtues of St. Joseph”. An important theme, promoted by the association, is the sanctification of work and the promotion of human dignity in society, serving the needs of the Church and society through corporal and spiritual works of mercy. The launch of the new reality will also coincide, on the date of December 8, with the national consecration of the Families to Saint Joseph and the closing of the Year of Saint Joseph.