Today I discovered that there are apparently Catholics who believe that St. Joseph was assumed into Heaven body and soul. Now, before we go further, let me make clear that:
I know this is NOT an official Church teaching, and I have already reminded other people of this fact.
With respect to believing it myself, I’m somewhere between “no” and “at best, we have no idea, so due to lack of evidence I’m leaning towards no”. The only people I believe were assumed body and soul were Mary definitely, and Elijah and Enoch possibly, based on OT Scripture. I always figured Joseph’s body is either in his yet-to-be-discovered tomb somewhere near Nazareth, or else perhaps his human remains have returned to the earth, or even been removed from his original tomb and moved somewhere else by early Christians and then misplaced, perhaps to be discovered again at the proper time. I have not even read or heard about St. Joseph being assumed in any kind of private revelation so far.
After hearing this theory about the Assumption of St. Joseph expressed, which was a new one on me, I googled and found apparently some Catholics do believe in the Assumption of St. Joseph. The arguments they give for it are generally along the lines of:
Mary and Joseph “became as one” when they were married, so if Mary was assumed into Heaven, it would be natural for Joseph to get the same treatment. This to me completely ignores the fact that Joseph, unlike Mary, was not lacking original sin and was not sinless in his life on earth either, and that Joseph did not carry the Messiah within his body, and Joseph’s body is not akin to the Ark of the Covenant, etc.
Mary loved Joseph so much that she would certainly ask Jesus to please assume St. Joseph body and soul into Heaven as well. My response to that is, Mary would only ask for such a thing if she knew it was God’s will, as Mary always does God’s will, so if she knew it was not going to be God’s will, she wouldn’t ask. Furthermore, Joseph being a very humble and pious man, certainly wouldn’t ask himself.
Joseph’s tomb has been found somewhere and it’s empty, so that proves his body was assumed into Heaven. However, I thought we still hadn’t found Joseph’s tomb, and even if we did find it and it was empty, there are many other more prosaic reasons for that which I listed above.
I am also skeptical because if Joseph was actually assumed into Heaven, it wouldn’t still be a newfangled idea after 2000 years. It would have likely been part of early Church tradition and I don’t think it is, although maybe I missed some apocrypha or something.
So, having said all that…
I was just wondering whether anyone here has heard these theological arguments for the Assumption of St. Joseph and whether there are groups of people who believe this? Is it a belief in some circles? Are people pushing for the Church to teach this? Because I have literally never heard of the concept before, anywhere.
I found one thread on the forum from 2011-2013 but it did not seem like the posters who responded to the thread believed this, and the person who originally asked about it agreed she had gotten confused.