Joseph, mild and noble, bent above the straw:
A pale girl, a frail girl, suffering he saw;
"O my Love, my Mary, my bride, I pity thee!"
"Nay, Dear," said Mary, "all is well with me!"
"Baby, my baby, O my babe," she sang.
Suddenly the golden night all with music rang.
Angels leading shepherds, shepherds leading sheep:
The silence of worship broke the mother's sleep.
All the meek and lowly of all the world were there;
Smiling, she showed them that her Child was fair,
"Baby, my baby," kissing Him she said.
Suddenly a flaming star through the heavens sped.
Three old men and weary knelt them side by side,
The world's wealth forswearing, majesty and pride;
Worldly might and wisdom before the Babe bent low:
Weeping, maid Mary said, "I love Him so!"
"Baby, my baby," and the Baby slept.
Suddenly on Calvary all the olives wept.
God of love, Father of all,
the darkness that covered the earth
has given way to the bright dawn of your Word made flesh.
Make us a people of this light.
Keep us faithful to your Word
that we may bring your life to the waiting world.
We ask through Christ our Lord. Amen.
—International Committee on English in the Liturgy.
"Joseph, mild and noble …"
Statue of Joseph at the Oratory of St Joseph of Mount Royal, Montréal, Québec.
"Blessed is the man" (Psalm 1), from the 1998 album Celtic Psalms, by Eden's Bridge.
May the Lord, when he comes, find us watching and waiting. Amen.