“The name of Joseph will be our protection during all the days of our life, but above all at the moment of death.”
- Blessed William Joseph Chaminade
St Joseph died a holy and happy death. He died gazing upon Jesus and resting in the arms of Mary. What greater death could a person experience? God has designated St Joseph as the Patron of the Dying because he wants us to experience a death similar to that of St Joseph, a holy and happy death.
Death is a part of life, but it is not an easy part of life. Letting go and saying goodbye to family and friends is not easy. In many monasteries, there are signs that read "Memento Mori ("Remember You Will Die"). The sign is not meant to be morbid, but rather to serve as a reminder that our life on earth will come to an end, and we need to be prepared for death. We need to be prepared for each because Satan always tries to get a soul to despair and turn away from our loving God in the hour of death. Ask any priest; he will tell you that a spiritual battle takes place over a soul at the hour of death. For this reason, we need the intercession of our spiritual father to fortify us, protect us, and fill us with trust in God's love and mercy.
The Church encourages us to prepare ourselves for the hour of our death. In the litany of the saints, for instance, she has us pray: "From sudden and unforeseen death, deliver us, O Lord," to ask the Mother of God to intercede for us "at the hour of our death" in the Hail Mary; and to entrust ourselves to St Joseph, the patron of a happy death.
- Catechism of the Catholic Church
The Catechism tells us that, in order to prepare for death, we should "entrust ourselves to St Joseph." To prevent an unhappy death - a death that catches us unprepared, without the last Sacraments - prepare for it now by consecrating yourself to St Joseph and living a holy life. In giving everything to St Joseph, death will not catch you unprepared. Today, many people are not prepared for death. They do not consider their mortality, living as if they are immortal and immune to the grave. The finality of death will be torture for such people.
O, St Joseph, you are the Hope of the Sick and the Patron of the Dying, we submit ourselves to your care and protection. Guide us to live a pious life in union with the Church, to remain in a state of sanctifying grace, to go for Confession and to receive Holy Communion frequently. We give everything to you. We especially ask you to assist us in the hour of hour death. So that we can live freely as children of God, trusting in your intercession so that no matter if flames devour us, or waters overwhelm us or disease slay us, we know that your prayers will throw around us an all-protecting mantle of defence. Amen
Litany of St Joseph
Lord, have mercy. Lord, have mercy.
Christ, have mercy. Christ, have mercy.
Lord, have mercy. Lord, have mercy.
Christ, hear us. Christ, graciously hear us.
God, the Father of Heaven, have mercy on us.
God the Son, Redeemer of the world, have mercy on us.
God the Holy Spirit, have mercy on us.
Holy Trinity, One God, have mercy on us.
Holy Mary, pray for us.
Saint Joseph, pray for us.
Noble Offspring of David, pray for us.
Light of Patriarchs, pray for us.
Spouse of the Mother of God, pray for us.
Chaste Guardian of the Virgin, pray for us.
Foster-Father of the Son of God, pray for us.
Zealous Defender of Christ, pray for us.
Head of the Holy Family, pray for us.
Joseph Most Just, pray for us.
Joseph Most Chaste, pray for us.
Joseph Most Prudent, pray for us.
Joseph Most Courageous, pray for us.
Joseph Most Obedient, pray for us.
Joseph Most Faithful, pray for us.
Mirror of Patience, pray for us.
Lover of Poverty, pray for us.
Model of Workmen, pray for us.
Glory of Domestic Life, pray for us.
Guardian of Virgins, pray for us.
Pillar of Families, pray for us.
Comfort of the Afflicted, pray for us.
Hope of the Sick, pray for us.
Patron of the Dying, pray for us.
Terror of Demons, pray for us.
Protector of the Holy Church, pray for us.
Lamb of God, who takes away the sins of the world, Spare us, O Lord.
Lamb of God, who takes away the sins of the world, Graciously hear us, O Lord.
Lamb of God, who takes away the sins of the world, Have mercy on us.
V. He has made him lord of his household,
R. And prince over all his possessions.
Let us pray. O God, who, in your loving providence, chose Blessed Joseph to be the spouse of your most Holy Mother, grant us the favor of having him for our intercessor in heaven whom on earth we venerate as our protector. You, who live and reign forever and ever. Amen.
Source: Consecration to St. Joseph: The Wonders of Our Spiritual Father, Fr. Donald Calloway MIC