When an Italian hears that someone is having trouble selling their home, what is the first thing they tell them? “Bury a St. Joseph statue!”
Origins of the Tradition
In order to understand why so many individuals bury St. Joseph statues to sell their homes, it is important to understand the history of the tradition. St. Joseph was the father of Jesus. Joseph is the patron saint of the Universal Church, unborn children, fathers, workers, travelers, immigrants, and a happy death. He is known to look after families and care for those in need of shelter. Therefore, it is evident why many pray to him and bury his statue in order to sell their homes.
St. Theresa, patron saint of missionaries, florists, and the sick, remembered that Joseph helped his family find a new home in Egypt. For that reason, in order to find a new home for the nuns, she buried a medal with St. Josephs’s face on it. Soon after, she was offered land for the new covenant. Brother Andre in Quebec also used this tactic when he was in need of land for a chapel. He was refused the land he desired but decided to pray to St. Joseph and bury his statue similar to what St. Theresa did. Shortly after, Brother Andre was offered the land.
How to Bury a St. Joseph Statue
1. Buy a St. Joseph Statue
They are available at many online Catholic stores.
2. Wrap the statue
The statue should be wrapped in protective cloth in order to show respect.
3. Bury the statue
It is believed that you should bury the St. Joseph statue near your for sale sign 12 inches deep in the ground. You can bury the statue in many different positions. Many believe that burying the statue upside down will motivate him to free himself by getting the house sold.
4. Say the prayer
Your St. Joseph statue will most likely come with a prayer. However, there are many you can find online as well such as the one below.
Prayer to Sell a House
O, Saint Joseph,
you who taught our Lord
the carpenter’s trade,
and saw to it
that he was always properly housed,
hear my earnest plea.
I want you to help me now
as you helped your foster-child Jesus,
and as you have helped many others
in the matter of housing.
I wish to sell this [house/property] quickly, easily, and profitably
and I implore you to grant my wish
by bringing me a good buyer,
one who is
eager, compliant, and honest,
and by letting nothing impede the
rapid conclusion of the sale.
Dear Saint Joseph,
I know you would do this for me
out of the goodness of your heart
and in your own good time,
but my need is very great now
and so I must make you hurry
on my behalf.
Saint Joseph, I am going to place you
in a difficult position
with your head in darkness
and you will suffer as our Lord suffered,
until this [house/property] is sold.
Then, Saint Joseph, i swear
before the cross and God Almighty,
that i will redeem you
and you will receive my gratitude
and a place of honour in my home.
What to do Once your Home is Sold
It is important to not leave the St. Joseph statue buried in your yard once your home is sold. One should dig up the statue and set it on their mantel as a way of thanking St. Joseph.