Help Understanding Prayer to St Joseph

Am trying to understand something about the 30 Day Prayer to St Joseph

I’ll try to parse the prayer with formatting to illustrate the parts I do and don’t understand. I’ll stop around the parts I don’t understand.

Thirty Days’ Prayer to Saint Joseph

ADDRESS - Ever blessed and glorious Joseph, kind and loving father, and helpful friend of all in sorrow!

SIGNIFICANT PATRONAGE - You are the good father and protector of orphans, the defender of the defenseless, the patron of those in need and sorrow.

FORESHADOWING TO PETITION - Look kindly on my request.

RELEVANCE/CAUSALITY - My sins have drawn down on me the just displeasure of my God, and so I am surrounded with unhappiness. To you, loving guardian of the Family of Nazareth, do I go for help and protection.

SUMMARY LINE TO FIRST PARAGRAPH - Listen, then, I beg you, with fatherly concern, to my earnest prayers, and obtain for me the favors I ask.

HERE’S THE PART I DON’T GET - I ask it by the infinite mercy of the eternal Son of God, which moved Him to take our nature and to be born into this world of sorrow.

I ask it by the…

SO NOW HERE’S MY QUESTION… The author of this prayer continues to go through a sort of litany that parallels the Seven Sorrows of Mary, but they keep using the word “by”, which I don’t quite get.

Using the word “by” seems to be like using “via” or stating a sort of “means” - sorta of like by saying we understand “how” it went for Joseph throughout his life with Jesus and Mary.

That says a lot, if it is correct.

I guess the question occurs due to the length of the prayer, which includes all seven sorrows before it states the actual petition, when one stops to wonder how it is supposed to relate to individual’s petition. When we say “by”, which seems to be the “way”, or what we must “go through”, then are we supposed to “go through” that stuff too? Or are we asking St Joseph to somehow provide us with wisdom based upon his experiences for already having gone through them?

For me, I think it’s just trying to invoke a closer relationship to Jesus through the life of His earthly father. It’s kind of like a St Joseph rosary, bringing you closer to St Joseph and Christ especially.

This isn’t designed to be a one off prayer, but a petition and spiritual endeavour.

(My interpretation)

That’s totally fine. I think my questions are sometimes unintentionally daunting to people because I can be too formal. So I appreciate your coming forward.

As for your response, it makes sense - the prayer takes too long not to be an endeavor…

I think the “sense” of it is more what I am after, though…

Looking into the Seven Sorrows Prayer a little closer, the opening phrase of each petition is “I grieve for you, O Mary most sorrowful…” The “grief” is to the Seven Sorrows what the author of the 30 Days Prayer uses as all the descriptive imagery at the beginning of each petition, such as when he says “I ask by all the suffering you endured…” and “I ask by all your care…”… and so on per each petition… The 30 Days author just seems more detailed in his description with respect to each scenario…

In light of that… is that what we are supposed to be doing when we pray it, though? I mean , we can remember the sufferings and grieving, but when we interpret the prayer how are we to respond to it? By suffering? Or by looking at the goodness of the outcomes? Both? Anything else?

Ty for your help! :slight_smile:

Adoptive father. Christ had only an earthly mother, the Father was God Himself. StJoseph is also known as Virgin Mary’s fiancee, because their marriage was never consumed.

Consummated… :wink:

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