Year of St Joseph

Pope Francis has published an Apostolic Letter Patris code (with a Father’s Heart), commemorating the 150th anniversary of the declaration of Saint Joseph as Patron of the Universal Church and proclaiming a ‘Year of St Joseph’ from December 8 2020 – December 8, 2021.

Apostolic Letter "Patris Corde"
Prayer Card - Diocese of Ballarat (adapted)


The ACBC are developing a number of resources to encourage and support the celebration of the Year of St Joseph:

  • Monthly reflections on various aspects of St Joseph’s life and character;
  • Prayers for various settings;
  • Litany of St Joseph;
  • Consecration to St Joseph;
  • Daily Prayers;
  • A shorter Litany to St Joseph.
ACBC Resources


Don Stewart, a parishioner of St Joseph’s Warrnambool, was asked to write a song in 2019 to celebrate the 170th anniversary of the founding of the parish. Don is offering “Joseph’s Song” for use freely in the diocese in liturgy, prayer and reflection during this year of St Joseph.

There are two versions of this song – one for parishes and schools named in honour of St Joseph and one for communities and parishes that are not named after St Joseph, but would still like to celebrate this year.  Listen and download the songs here.

For copies of the of the lyrics, musical notation and guitar chords for the song, please contact Don via the website or email

Conditions of use are:

1) The copyright notice; Copyright©Don Stewart, 2020 appears on all printed or digitally displayed copies of the song; and

2) That usage of the song is reported to you the copyright collection agency – One License.

Don would like to hear from communities about how they use the song and whether it was a helpful resource for the prayer life of the community.


The Aussie Camino is a pilgrimage route running from Portland in Victoria to Penola in South Australia, inspired by the life and journeys of Australia’s first Saint, Mary of the Cross MacKillop, and her mentor, Fr Julian Tenison Woods.

This year being declared the Year of St Joseph by Pope Francis, is a great opportunity to visit and reflect on the “Josephites” or “Brown Joeys” – the Sisters of St Joseph of the Sacred Heart – founded by St Mary MacKillop in Penola in 1866.

On average you will walk between 20-25km per day (6-8 hours) for the eight days of walking.  Each day is long, however it is spectacular and is both a spiritual and a human experience.  This Camino includes amazing walks along cliff tops, beaches, sand dunes, goat trails and farm tracks.

Based on the traditions of the Camino de Santiago de Compostela in Spain, pilgrims receive a guidebook, passport, scallop shell and stay in the local towns along the way. Fr Justin Driscoll will accompany the pilgrims.

10 Days – Portland to Penola:
Departing Ballarat:  Friday, April 30, 2021
Returning Ballarat: Sunday, May 9, 2021
Maximum of 12 people

An information session for this event will be held on Wednesday, March 3, 2021 at 5.30pm in the smaller hall at St Patrick’s Cathedral Ballarat.  To register your interest and attend the information session, please contact Leonie at Lifestyle Travel Ballarat


The Diocese of Parramatta has released a short, visually beautiful, animated reflection to begin their celebration of the Year of Saint Joseph, inspired by Pope Francis’ letter Patris Corde.

This introductory piece encourages us to imitate the example of St Joseph in our lives and our communities, and emphasises the value of good, faithful and noble service.

Celebrating Saint Joseph


The Sisters of St Joseph invite all to participate in a week of prayer with St Joseph, beginning on March 19.

St Mary MacKillop and Fr Julian Tenison Woods, the co-founders of the Sisters of Saint Joseph of the Sacred Heart, chose St Joseph to be patron of the Congregation and so we rejoice in this opportunity to pray with and for the people of God with St Joseph.

During this year, the Congregation will mark each of its primary feasts with special prayers and celebrations. The first of these will be a week of prayer in preparation for the feast of St Joseph followed by other events.  More information available from their website.

Sisters of St Joseph Website


Year of St Joseph Prayer cards have been distributed to parishes, school and agencies of the diocese.  Additional copies of the cards are available from the the Pastoral Ministry Office,