I Broke The Head of St Joseph

Today is “St. Joseph’s Day”… St. Joseph is widely considered the patron saint of home and family.   As such, some people incorporate the use of a statue of St. Joseph in their efforts when they sell a home.   There are varying instructions as to how to incoporate the statue (bury it, bury it upside down, bury it near the for sale sign, etc).  Sometimes it’s done by the homeowners, sometimes the agent.  And, as this article explains, we definitely saw more use of this technique in 2007-2009 when the market was, generally speaking, in the tank….

And while you may hear stories of St. Joseph from lots of agents… I am pretty sure you’re not going to hear this story anywhere else.
Once upon a time, I had a client, Jamie, who was planning to relocate from Nebraska to the Dulles area for her husband’s job.   As is usually the case, the market here was faring better than most areas of the country – Nebraska included, and Jamie knew it!  So, she was rightfully concerned about the time it would take to sell her home.

Enter St. Joseph.

Encouraged by her REALTOR there, she bought a St. Joseph statue and proceeded to follow the instructions.

Just one problem… She broke his head attempting to bury him upside down!

At this point, I know I can not retell the story the way I heard it.  Jamie is a funny lady anyway, and to hear her tell the story of how she reacted when his head broke was absolutely PRICELESS.    Just take a minute and imagine Lucille Ball in this circumstance. Got it?  That’s the picture I got, too.  It goes something like this…

Bury it anyway…. Try to pretend you don’t know you broke his head off.
Feel guilty.  Unbury him.
Attempt to tape him back together.  Realize this is not going to work.
Try to glue his head on & re-bury…. only to break his head off again, several times.
Cry.  Feel doomed. Swear never to tell your husband.
Call your REALTOR and ask about the limits of the “Confidentiality” clause in the listing agreement before deciding whether to confess and ask for direction.  The REALTOR is too vague on whether she can keep secrets from the husband that relate to the sale of their home.  Decide she can not be trusted with this secret.
Buy a new St. Joseph.  Bury it.
Throw broken St. Joseph in the trash.
Realize this is the thing curses are made of.
Observe a stream of bad luck for several days.
Think your house will never sell now.
Feel urge to confess.
Dig broken St. Joseph out of trash.
Consider going to confession.
Instead, call your mother.
Eventually, go see the local Priest.

ANYWAY… I have good news.  Apparently, this, too, is a forgivable sin.  The Priest had a “formula” for correcting the issue… (apparently this has happened more than once!).  Jamie was able to follow the priests instructions without further error.

The best news is, shortly after St. Joseph was properly buried, her home sold and they were able to purchase here. They have been living in the Dulles area since 2008.

After remembering this story today, I just had to call her.  I wonder, when she gets my message, if she will laugh or cry remembering the ordeal.

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