How old were Joseph, Mary, and Jesus when ... ?

Pope Francis proclaimed a “Year of Saint Joseph” from 8 December 2020 to 8 December 2021. A wonderful book to help stimulate our devotion to St Joseph is Consecration to St. Joseph; The Wonders of Our Spiritual Father by Donald H. Calloway, MIC [Marian Press, Stockbridge, MA © 2020]. Rather than the tradition that St. Joseph was somewhat older than Mary, Father Calloway’s thought is that Joseph was the “Young Husband of Mary.” [Consecration, Pages 113 - 124]

Bl. Catherine’s writings, however, coincide with the tradition that St. Joseph was indeed older. Here are some life events and ages that I found in Bl. Catherine’s reported writings.

Life Event Mary's Age Joseph's Age Jesus' Age
Espousal of Mary and Joseph 14 44
Birth of Jesus 15 45
Return of Holy Family from Egypt to Nazarath 22 52 7
Death of Joseph 45 75 30
Death of Jesus 48 33
Death and Assumption of Mary 63

Regarding the question of whether God would choose an older person to fulfill Joseph's mission, Remember that Moses was 80 years old when he began the 40-year trek across the desert leading the Israelites from Egypt to the promised land.

My most cherished image of the powerful role of St. Joseph comes from Father Valentine Long in his book The Mother of God by Valentine Long, O.F.M. [Franciscan Herald Press, Chicago, IL 60609 © 1976], page 201.

Describing what the three children saw during the Miracle of the Sun at Fatima, on October 13, 1917, Father Long writes:

An unmistakable tableau of the Holy Family formed on the sky, directly overhead. The Blessed Mother, wearing a white garment with a blue mantle, stood alongside St. Joseph who held on his left arm the Christ Child. … His foster father made the sign of the cross over the world three times, following which the Child did the same.

Investigate the context of the following text excerpts by using the “link to full text” links.

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Link to full text. Text excerpt.
Vol 1 p0195 Mary was at this time a little over fourteen years old.
Vol 1 p0196 Jesus when put to death was thirty-three years, four months, and two weeks old.
Vol 1 p0218 Joseph was five and forty years old. He was thirty years and, I think, three months older than Mary. He was thin, had a fair complexion, promi­nent cheekbones tinged with red, a high, open fore­head, and a brownish beard.
Vol 1 p0316 I had a glimpse of the Boy Jesus, now seven years old, as He walked between Mary and Joseph on their journey back to Judea from Egypt. ... Joseph was about thirty years older than Mary.
Vol 1 p0330 As the time drew near for Jesus to begin His mis­sion of teaching, I saw Him ever more solitary and meditative; and toward the same time, the thirtieth year of Jesus, Joseph began to decline. ... When Joseph was dying, ... The whole room was brilliant with light and full of angels.
Vol 4 p0450 Mary died in the year 48 after the Birth of Christ, thirteen years and two months after Christ's Ascension. This was shown me in numbers, not in writing. First, I saw IV, and then VIII, which denoted the year 48; lastly, I saw XIII, and two full months.
Vol 4 p0458 As the Blessed Virgin felt her end approaching, in accordance with the directions of her Divine Son, she called the Apostles to her by prayer. She was now in her sixty-third year. At the time of Christ's birth she was in her fifteenth.
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