Missio and Mill Hill Missionaries: Novena to St Joseph

St Joseph's Missionary Society (the Mill Hill Missionaries) is Britain's own missionary society. Each year we join them to prepare for the feast day of St Joseph with a special Novena.


Join us to pray to St Joseph

Join us and our partners, the Mill Hill Missionaries, for the annual Novena to St Joseph this March.

St Joseph's Missionary Society (the Mill Hill Missionaries) is Britain's own missionary society, founded by Cardinal Herbert Vaughan in 1866. Each year the Mill Hill community prepares for the feast day of St Joseph with a special Novena of Masses and prayers.

Prayer is the foundation of all mission work, both in this country and abroad. The Novena is a wonderful way for the faithful to pray for each other, and build links of prayer across the world for missionaries and the people they serve.

Click JOIN to join our global family in making 2023 a year for mission! 

A Novena to the silent man of the Gospel

In 1989 Saint Pope John Paul II issued a document: On the Person and Mission of St Joseph in the Life of Christ and the Church'. The example of Joseph, the silent man of the Gospel, encourages us to a 'renewed commitment to evangelisation in the world'. He serves as a 'model for the entire Christian community, whatever the condition and duties of each of its members'.

Cardinal Herbert Vaughan, who founded the Mill Hill Missionaries in 1866, looked to Joseph being 'the first missionary' when he 'took the Child and his Mother' into the land of Egypt. The official seal of the Mill Hill Missionary Society shows Joseph, protector of the Holy Family, leading Mary with her Child on that first 'mission' to a far off land. 

We offer this Novena to St Joseph as Protector of the Church, and seek to follow his example of being 'constantly attentive to God, open to the signs of God's presence and receptive to God's plans, and not simply his own' (Pope Francis). We ask for his protection over our families and for his help with our daily problems. 

Pope Benedict wrote: 'If discouragement overwhelms you, think of the faith of St Joseph. If anxiety has its grip on you, think of the hope of St Joseph. If exasperation or hatred seizes you, think of the love of St Joseph'. 

How to pray this Novena

Read each reflection and spend some time prayerfully contemplating each day for nine days.

Each day also offers readings, intercessions and prayers for you to spend time with. 

What is a Novena?

A Novena is a nine day period of prayer. It is based around a particular need or petition and asks for special grace. Very often, the Novena is directed to a particular saint or blessed figure.

Click here to find out more about the Mill Hill Missionaries.

Prayer from the novena

Our Father

Hail, Guardian of the Redeemer, Spouse of the Blessed Virgin Mary. To you God entrusted his only Son; in you Mary placed her trust; with you Christ became man. Blessed Joseph, to us too, show yourself a father and guide us in the path of life. Obtain for us grace, mercy and courage, and defend us from every evil. Amen. (Prayer for the Year of St Joseph Patris Corde: Pope Francis)