Putting the Joseph Back in Christmas

I’m not a knick-nacky person.  I don’t have bric-a-brac.  I’m not a curio keeper.

That being said I do have several (5 or 6) nativities that I put out this time of year.  And I noticed something as I was setting up the scenes this year.  I have nearly no Josephs.  Every creche that I have has a baby Jesus (naturally), they all have a Mary (almost always kneeling), they all have three wise men.  Every one of them has a random assortment of livestock, sheep, camels, cows and maybe an angel.  Each also has a minimum of one shepherd.  And then they have the other guy, the is he a shepherd or is he Joseph guy.

I have a gorgeous white china nativity (no doubt given to me by my mother in law) that has all the necessary pieces (Jesus, Mary, 3 wise men, a camel) and two other guys.  One is holding a sheep and the other a shepherd’s crook.  Ummm…

I'm a little nauseated by Precious Moments but I'm even more bothered by the 3 shepherds and no Joseph.

This is not my nativity but you get the idea, which one is Joseph?

I don’t really know what to do with that.  I made the guy with the crook Joseph because- well the guy with the lamb in his arms is definitely a shepherd right?  But the other guy really is too isn’t he?  So where’s Joseph?

Most of my sets are like that.  I’ve played with the idea that my kids have lost Joseph, heaven knows they’ve played with the nativities enough (and we have the missing arms, halos, etc. to prove it) but they’ve never played with my china one (I do draw the line somewhere) and what are the odds that they’ve lost all the Josephs and only the Josephs?

The thing is that I think Joseph is important.  I get that Jesus is the most important, I have no argument with that.  I don’t hold Mary in the regard that some do, I’m looking at you Catholics, but I still have huge amounts of respect for her.  But to my mind the next most important figure there is Joseph.  It’s true that he didn’t contribute the usual DNA offering that most fathers do.  But he was chosen BY GOD to raise God’s son.  He, of all the guys around was deemed worthy by an omnipotent, omniscient, father to be the physical father figure to the most important person to ever live.  It wasn’t that he just happened to be engaged to Mary, he was picked just as much as she was.  That’s kind of a big deal.

And yet I have 3 wise men and one maybe shepherd possibly Joseph guy?  That’s just not right.  So this Christmas while we’re singing about Christ and about the virgin mother how about a shout out the virgin father, to the guy catching that baby?  How about a little love for Joesph?

6 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Catherine
    Dec 10, 2011 @ 12:33:41

    My nativity from Israel also contains no Joseph. There is a guy with a staff that I put in that place because there has to be someone, but why does he have a staff? He should be holding clean towels and buckets of hot water. I like mom’s set. Very clearly a Joseph who fits nicely kneeling next to Mary.

  2. Kristina P.
    Dec 10, 2011 @ 16:38:21

    I completed my Pier One nativity last year. They had been selling these cool tin people for a while, and I was able to get the three wise men and the angel. Finally, last year, they sold Joseph, Mary, and Jesus as a single piece, so I finally have a full nativity.

  3. madhousewife
    Dec 10, 2011 @ 17:38:49

    Maybe Joseph needed a crook to catch dinner or something. They were on the road for a long time.

    Nothing beats the awesomeness of this Joseph.

  4. Flip flop mama
    Dec 12, 2011 @ 21:10:40

    You know I always assumed the ones with the staff (without sheep on their shoulders or in their arms) were Josephs but now you have me doubting. I know I have one set with a Joseph–he’s just holding a lantern, but the other one I’m not so sure now….

  5. Chris Jones (@CjLehi)
    Dec 15, 2011 @ 22:31:07

    My wife thinks the car commercial is inappropriate while she’s trying to pray. But she doesn’t speak Italian, so she really has no idea how inappropriate it is.

    Thanks for the Joseph love. We fathers appreciate it.

  6. bythelbs
    Dec 22, 2011 @ 17:35:10

    I thought all of mine have Joseph’s, but I do have one where “Joseph” is holding a staff, so hmm…

    I think Joseph is as important as Mary. I bet Jesus does too.

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