Lent Madness: Absalom Jones vs. Joseph

March 4, 2016 Comments Off on Lent Madness: Absalom Jones vs. Joseph


About today’s match up from Lent Madness :

The Saintly Sixteen continues with Absalom Jones taking on Joseph. In the first round, Jones defeated Matthias by the largest margin of Lent Madness 2016, 82% to 18% while Joseph swept past Christina Rossetti by the second largest margin, 79% to 21%. Will this be a harbinger of a tightly contested race? Only time and your (single) vote will tell.

Yesterday’s results:

Yesterday, in the first matchup of the Saintly Sixteen, Constance defeated Helena 69% to 31%. She’ll go on to face the winner of Clare vs. Vida Dutton Scudder in the Elate Eight.

On the St. Luke’s Blog, Constance also won with 67%.

Remember: vote at Lent Madness here AND ALSO below the saint bios here so we see how the readers of the St. Luke in the Fields blog compare! Results of this match up will be reported the next day.

absalom_jones_icon-213x300Absalom Jones

Did you know…

In the mid-to-late 1700s, slaves living in Pennsylvania were allowed to marry and to learn how to write and read. Jones worked at night for many years to buy his freedom, but first he bought his wife’s. The reason? Their children would then be born free.

In Philadelphia, there is a chapel and a memorial window named for Absalom Jones. His ashes have been enshrined in the altar of the chapel.

When yellow fever struck Philadelphia in the 1790s, Absalom Jones assisted Dr. Benjamin Rush in treating people afflicted by the plague: blacks were initially thought to be immune, and many whites simply fled the city (including most doctors except for Rush and his assistants, some of whom died)… Read more here.


The canonical Gospels offer very few details about Joseph, the earthly father of Jesus. His mentions are limited almost entirely to the birth narratives in Matthew and Luke. It is speculated that Joseph must have died in Jesus’ childhood. Matthew presents him as a particularly righteous man, obeying God faithfully and often doing exactly what God commands word for word. And it is no small thing what Joseph was asked to do.

The earliest non-canonical stories about Joseph (found in the Proto-Gospel of James and the Infancy Gospel of Thomas—both of which are delightful, quick reads) help us understand the enormity of the task and give us a glimpse of his character.

In the Proto-Gospel of James, Joseph enters the story as an old man, widowed with his own children (according to another ancient source, Joseph is 90 with four sons and two daughters). Mary is 12 and living in the Temple....Read more here.

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