Dating back to the 1920s, when our founder, Father Judge, acquired a small farm atop a scenic hill in the Watchung Mountains, the Shrine of St. Joseph has served as a place of rest and retreat.
Through the years, the Shrine has become a grounding place for people on a faith journey . . . a sacred place where all people can journey with their God. Our mission is about people — at the Shrine, people can “go to Joseph,” as Fr. Judge used to tell us. They can trust in the compassion, understanding and acceptance they find. The miracle of God’s closeness touches those who visit and pray here.
Still today, thousands of men and women and children visit annually. They arrive in cars and chartered buses, in groups and individually. Some stay for a day, others for an hour. Fr. Judge’s belief that in the ordinary events of one’s life the extraordinary happens energizes our mission to nourish spiritual growth.
While the Shrine of St. Joseph primarily tends to the spiritual needs of its pilgrims, our work at Christ the King Church in urban Jersey City is a blend of spiritual and practical service. The parishioners proudly embrace and beautifully blend their rich African-American heritage in the way they worship and praise God in the liturgies. A weekend soup kitchen offers hot meals for anyone who walks in off the street, and a food pantry provides groceries for needy families. During the holidays, volunteers assemble and distribute food baskets and provide gifts for the poorest among them. While the neighborhood surrounding the Christ the King has declined in recent years, the parish continues to be an oasis and beacon of faith.