Was Mary Really Married to Joseph???
June 22, 2014
The Holy Family
YES YES YES , Mary and St Joseph were married before the conception of Our Lord Jesus Christ! Ok, deep breath now. It is so important in this day and age especially with so many attacks on the family itself to protect the TRUTH of the dignity of the Holy Family. So many people today, even some priests, are misinterpreting the Holy scriptures and teachings of the Church by trying to say that Jesus was conceived out of wedlock ; this is just FALSE . It is a direct attack on the sanctity of the Holy Family, and ultimately the family itself. As Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI said, it is ” pious fiction ” to try and even suggest that Jesus was conceived out of wedlock, and to appeal to the sentimentality of the single mother. So called charity without truth is not charity at all, they must be coupled together at all times.
Now, to try and help clarify things we need to go back to the first century customs of the Jewish people. What we recognize as “betrothal,” and what a first century Jewish person sees as betrothal are two very different things to be sure. This taken from a Jewish website here:
Two Stages in Marriage
According to Torah law, marriage is a two-step process. The first stage is called “kiddushin,” and the second step is known as “nisu’in.” Kiddushin is commonly translated as betrothal or espousal, but actually renders the bride and groom full-fledged husband and wife. After this point, if, G‑d forbid, they decided to part ways, a “get” (Jewish divorce) would be required. However, the bride and groom are not permitted to live together as husband and wife until the second stage, the nisu’in, is completed. This taken from this site more info if you want http://www.chabad.org/library/article_cdo/aid/477321/jewish/Kiddushin-Betrothal.htm.
Here are some more references straight out of the Gospel of St Matthew, who is very specific on more than one occasion in the first chapter. Let us take a look what the Holy Scriptures say ; ”  Now the generation of Christ was in this wise. When as his mother Mary was espoused to Joseph, before they came together, she was found with child, of the Holy Ghost.  Whereupon. Joseph her husband, being a just man, and not willing publicly to expose her, was minded to put her away privately.” So, we have the term “espoused” in verse 18, and right after this we have St Joseph being called “her husband.” St Matthew writing under the inspiration of God also had this to say a few verses later, clearly identifying Mary and Joseph as being married ”  And Joseph rising up from sleep, did as the angel of the Lord had commanded him, and took unto him his wife.” Well, that is very clear and plain to me, that St Joseph and Mary were indeed married. Eventhough it definitely appears that St Joseph and Mary were in the kiddushin stage , which is the first stage, it is still an absolutely valid marriage, and a divorce would be needed to get out of it. Even worse, if it was thought that a Jewish woman in the kiddushin stage had been with a man other than her husband, she would have violated Jewish Law and be guilty of adultery, a crime punishable by death. ( my emphasis added in the verses taken from Holy Scripture )
This is what St John Paul II had to say about the fact that Our Lady and St Joseph were absolutely married from St John Paul II’s General Audience of Wednesday, 21 August 1996.” 1. In presenting Mary as a “virgin”, the Gospel of Luke adds that she was “betrothed to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David”( 1:27). These two pieces of information at first sight seem contradictory.
It should be noted that the Greek word used in this passage does not indicate the situation of a woman who has contracted marriage and therefore lives in the marital state, but that of betrothal. Unlike what occurs in modern cultures, however, the ancient Jewish custom of betrothal provided for a contract and normally had definitive value: it actually introduced the betrothed to the marital state, even if the marriage was brought to full completion only when the young man took the girl to his home. At the time of the Annunciation, Mary thus had the status of one betrothed.” Pretty convincing evidence coming from the Holy Scriptures and also newly canonized Saint John Paul II, and even from Jewish sources that all say the same thing about a Jewish marriage.
So, why do people teach this horrendous error than? I can only make an educated guess, but it could likely be from poor catechetical training, and in many instances even poorer priestly and religious formation. Way to much personal interpretation of Holy Scriptures can be added into the mix ; it is always best to follow “the constant and very firm teachings” of the Catholic Church. The Magisterium and Holy Tradition with the Church Fathers is where we turn to look for proper interpretations of Holy Scripture. Pope Benedict XVI said “dogma is simply the proper interpretation of scripture.” Please help in defending the Sanctity of The Holy Family at all times, and call people out on their errors if they fall into this one especially. Write your Bishop if need be, “Do Not Be Afraid!!!”
The Marian Catechist Apostolate has a great multi media section on this very topic, so here it is, and please use it; http://www.mariancatechist.com/multimedia/index.html.
If you have any comments or questions, or if you just want to say hello, please do so at the top of the post. May God Almighty protect us from the world, the devil, and ourselves in JMJ, Lee