THIRD ORDER LAY contemplatives of saint joseph


Members of the COSJ Third Order are lay men and women who are drawn and committed to the contemplative/active charism of the COSJ insofar as it can be lived by the laity.  They come from all walks of life and are committed to grow in their Christian faith through a deeper prayer life, study, and service, on their own and in the community.  The members belong to the Catholic Church and embrace her teachings in all matters of faith and morals.  They may not belong to another third order. 

Christian Contemplative Life

The COSJ Third Order share the same spirituality as members of the COSJ, who lead a contemplative life.  They live a prayerful life—reflecting as much as possible the life of the COSJ priests, brothers and sisters.  This is lived by dwelling in exterior and interior silence and in joyful simplicity in accordance with the state of life proper to the laity.

Serving an Active Apostolate

Since the laity live in the midst of the world & its concerns, they are called to exercise their apostolate in the world.  The COSJ Third Order members serve the people of God within the Archdiocese of San Francisco or in their respective parishes.  They serve joyfully by giving themselves wholeheartedly to their communities according to the individual’s call and gift.

Daily Prayer & Practices

Daily prayer life is focused on a personal relationship with the Lord.  This includes Mass during the week and on Sundays, frequent adoration of the Blessed Sacrament, monthly Sacrament of Reconciliation, Lectio Divina, the Jesus Prayer, and devotions to Our Lady and Saint Joseph.  The emphasis is upon the Christian contemplative practices within the Western and the Eastern traditions.  Third Order members participate in the Ordinary & Extraordinary forms of the Mass as well as the Byzantine Divine Liturgy.

COSJ Contemplative Pathway

The pathway is a five-year formation program to deepen the faith and strengthen knowledge of contemplative spirituality.  The COSJ Third Order members undertake ongoing community learning and self-study, which includes the study of Sacred Scriptures, the Tradition and Church teaching, writings of contemplative saints and contemporary spiritual writings.

Monthly Meetings and Annual Retreat

The COSJ Third Order meets monthly on the second Saturday of the month, September through May, from 7:45 am to 8:00 pm for an intense day of worship, prayer, education, study, reflection and fellowship.  Silence is observed for the whole day.  The members also attend an annual retreat, setting aside a time for silence and solitude with God.


Wednesdays are dedicated to Saint Joseph, especially the first Wednesday of each month.

- If you would like information about joining the COSJ Third Order please call or write us -