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Saint’s Michael, Gabriel and Raphael, Archangels

Jacob’s Ladder

(c.1490)
Avignon, Musee du Petit Palais

 


Catholic Culture

Ordinary Time: September 29th

Feast of Sts. Michael, Gabriel, and Raphael, Archangels

MASS READINGS

September 29, 2018 (Readings on USCCB website)

COLLECT PRAYER

O God, who dispose in marvelous order ministries both angelic and human, graciously grant that our life on earth may be defended by those who watch over us as they minister perpetually to you in heaven. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son, who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever.

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Old Calendar: Dedication of the Basilica of St. Michael the Archangel (Michaelmas Day)

The liturgy celebrates the feast of these three archangels who are venerated in the tradition of the Church. Michael (Who is like God?) was the archangel who fought against Satan and all his evil angels, defending all the friends of God. He is the protector of all humanity from the snares of the devil. Gabriel (Strength of God) announced to Zachariah the forthcoming birth of John the Baptist, and to Mary, the birth of Jesus. His greeting to the Virgin, “Hail, full of grace,” is one of the most familiar and frequent prayers of the Christian people. Raphael (Medicine of God) is the archangel who took care of Tobias on his journey.

According to the 1962 Missal of St. John XXIII the Extraordinary Form of the Roman Rite, today is the feast of St. Michael. St. Gabriel is observed on March 24 and St. Raphael on October 24.


The Catechism of the Catholic Church teaches us that, “[T]he existence of the spiritual, non-corporeal beings that Sacred Scripture usually calls “angels” is a truth of faith. The witness of Scripture is as clear as the unanimity of Tradition.”

Angels are pure, created spirits. The name angel means servant or messenger of God. Angels are celestial or heavenly beings, on a higher order than human beings. Angels have no bodies and do not depend on matter for their existence or activity. They are distinct from saints, which men can become. Angels have intellect and will, and are immortal. They are a vast multitude, but each is an individual person. Archangels are one of the nine choirs of angels listed in the Bible. In ascending order, the choirs or classes are 1) Angels, 2) Archangels, 3) Principalities, 4) Powers, 5) Virtues, 6) Dominations, 7) Thrones, 8) Cherubim, and 9) Seraphim.


St. Michael
The name of the archangel Michael means, in Hebrew, who is like unto God? and he is also known as “the prince of the heavenly host.” He is usually pictured as a strong warrior, dressed in armor and wearing sandals. His name appears in Scripture four times, twice in the Book of Daniel, and once each in the Epistle of St. Jude and the Book of Revelation. From Revelation we learn of the battle in heaven, with St. Michael and his angels combatting Lucifer and the other fallen angels (or devils). We invoke St. Michael to help us in our fight against Satan; to rescue souls from Satan, especially at the hour of death; to be the champion of the Jews in the Old Testament and now Christians; and to bring souls to judgment.

This day is referred to as “Michaelmas” in many countries and is also one of the harvest feast days. In England this is one of the “quarter days”, which was marked by hiring servants, electing magistrates, and beginning of legal and university terms. This day also marks the opening of the deer and other large game hunting season. In some parts of Europe, especially Germany, Denmark, and Austria, a special wine called “Saint Michael’s Love” (Michelsminne) is drunk on this day. The foods for this day vary depending on nationality. In the British Isles, for example, goose was the traditional meal for Michaelmas, eaten for prosperity, France has waffles or Gaufres and the traditional fare in Scotland used to be St. Michael’s Bannock (Struan Micheil) — a large, scone-like cake. In Italy, gnocchi is the traditional fare.

Patron: Against temptations; against powers of evil; artists; bakers; bankers; battle; boatmen; cemeteries; coopers; endangered children; dying; Emergency Medical Technicians; fencing; grocers; hatmakers; holy death; knights; mariners; mountaineers; paramedics; paratroopers; police officers; radiologists; sailors; the sick; security forces; soldiers; against storms at sea; swordsmiths; those in need of protection; Brussels, Belgium; Caltanissett, Sicily; Cornwall, England; Diocese of Pensacola-Tallahassee Florida; England; Germany; Archdiocese of Mobile, Alabama; Papua, New Guinea; Puebla, Mexico; San Miguel de Allende, Mexico; Sibenik, Croatia; Archdiocese of Seattle, Washington; Diocese of Springfield, Massachusetts.

Symbols: Angel with wings; dressed in armour; lance and shield; scales; shown weighing souls; millstone; piercing dragon or devil; banner charged with a dove; symbolic colors orange or gold.


St. Gabriel
St. Gabriel’s name means “God is my strength”. Biblically he appears three times as a messenger. He had been sent to Daniel to explain a vision concerning the Messiah. He appeared to Zachary when he was offering incense in the Temple, to foretell the birth of his son, St. John the Baptist. St. Gabriel is most known as the angel chosen by God to be the messenger of the Annunciation, to announce to mankind the mystery of the Incarnation.

The angel’s salutation to our Lady, so simple and yet so full of meaning, Hail Mary, full of grace, has become the constant and familiar prayer of all Christian people.

Patron: Ambassadors; broadcasting; childbirth; clergy; communications; diplomats; messengers; philatelists; postal workers; public relations; radio workers; secular clergy; stamp collectors; telecommunications; Portugal; Archdiocese of Seattle, Washington.

Symbols: Archangel; sceptre and lily; MR or AM shield; lantern; mirror; olive branch; scroll with words Ave Maria Gratia Plena; Resurrection trumpet; shield; spear; lily; symbolic colors, silver or blue.


St. Raphael
Our knowledge of the Archangel Raphael comes to us from the book of Tobit. His mission as wonderful healer and fellow traveller with the youthful Tobias has caused him to be invoked for journeys and at critical moments in life. Tradition also holds that Raphael is the angel that stirred the waters at the healing sheep pool in Bethesda. His name means “God has healed”.

Patron: Blind; bodily ills; counselors; druggists; eye problems; guardian angels; happy meetings; healers; health inspectors; health technicians; love; lovers; mental illness; nurses; pharmacists; physicians; shepherds; against sickness; therapists; travellers; young people; young people leaving home for the first time; Archdiocese of Dubuque, Iowa; Archdiocese of Seattle, Washington.

Symbols: Staff; wallet and fish; staff and gourd; archangel; young man carrying a staff; young man carrying a fish; walking with Tobias; holding a bottle or flask; symbolic colors, gray or yellow.

Things to Do:

  • This is a good feast to learn more about the angels. Children especially are fascinated by these celestial beings. The best place to start is the Catechism of the Catholic Church, nos. 328-336 to see the teachings of the Church on angels. John Paul II also did a Catechesis on the Angels during his General Audiences from July 9 to August 20, 1986.
  • Find the passages in the Bible about angels, in particular the passages about Michael, Gabriel and Raphael.
  • Read the section on angels in the Directory on Popular Piety and Liturgy. The document examines the doctrine and devotions of the angels. Devotion to angels is good, but also can have deviations.

    Devotion to the Holy Angels gives rise to a certain form of the Christian life which is characterized by:

    • devout gratitude to God for having placed these heavenly spirits of great sanctity and dignity at the service of man;
    • an attitude of devotion deriving from the knowledge of living constantly in the presence of the Holy Angels of God — serenity and confidence in facing difficult situations, since the Lord guides and protects the faithful in the way of justice through the ministry of His Holy Angels. Among the prayers to the Guardian Angels the Angele Dei is especially popular, and is often recited by families at morning and evening prayers, or at the recitation of the Angelus.

    217. Popular devotion to the Holy Angels, which is legitimate and good, can, however, also give rise to possible deviations:

    • when, as sometimes can happen, the faithful are taken by the idea that the world is subject to demiurgical struggles, or an incessant battle between good and evil spirits, or Angels and daemons, in which man is left at the mercy of superior forces and over which he is helpless; such cosmologies bear little relation to the true Gospel vision of the struggle to overcome the devil, which requires moral commitment, a fundamental option for the Gospel, humility and prayer;
    • when the daily events of life, which have nothing or little to do with our progressive maturing on the journey towards Christ are read schematically or simplistically, indeed childishly, so as to ascribe all setbacks to the devil and all success to the Guardian Angels. The practice of assigning names to the Holy Angels should be discouraged, except in the cases of Gabriel, Raphael and Michael whose names are contained in Holy Scripture.
  • Also read All About the Angels.
  • Memorize the prayer to St. Michael the Archangel. Although no longer formally recited after Mass, our Holy Father John Paul II has encouraged us to recite this prayer daily. Read about this prayer. Here is the Regina Caeli message from April 24, 1994 during which the pope encouraged this prayer.
  • In honor of St. Gabriel, Learn the Angelus and recite it daily. Traditionally, the prayer is prayed at the 6:00 and 12:00 hours (am and pm). There is a partial indulgence attached to those who pray this prayer.
  • Read the Book of Tobit for the story of St. Raphael helping Tobit and Tobias.
  • Make some recipes related to Michaelmas. Of special mention is the St. Michael Bannock from Scotland, roast goose and stuffing from Britain, waffles from France, and roast duck from Germany or France, gnocchi from Italy. Blackberries, apples and carrots also play a large role on this feast in various countries. Other ideas: make an angel food cake, devil’s food cake or angel hair pasta. Decorate with white, symbolizing the angels, or use other symbolic colors (see above). Non-dessert items: deviled eggs, deviled meats, etc.
  • Try to find the Michaelmas daisy, a purple aster, to use for decoration. It also comes in other colors, including white, but purple is the most popular. It usually blooms in late summer until October. The official name is Aster novi-belgii, but is also known as New York aster. If you find plants or seeds to plan for next year’s garden. This site has photos and gardening information for the Michaelmas daisy.
  • Folklore in the British Isles suggests that Michaelmas day is the last day that blackberries can be picked. It is said that when St. Michael expelled Lucifer, the devil, from heaven, he fell from the skies and landed in a prickly blackberry bush. Satan cursed the fruit, scorched them with his fiery breath, and stamped and spat on them, so that they would be unfit for eating. A Traditional Irish proverb says:
    On Michaelmas Day the devil puts his foot on the blackberries.If you have access to blackberries, make this the last picking and eating. Perhaps make a blackberry pie? See Michaelmas Pie for a great recipe.

 

The Word Among Us

Meditation: John 1:47-51

Saints Michael, Gabriel, and Raphael, Archangels (Feast)

You will see heaven opened and the angels of God ascending and descending on the Son of Man. (John 1:51)

When you think about the future, how do you feel? If you’re looking forward to a family wedding or the arrival of a new baby, you might be very excited. If you’re not sure you have enough cash to cover your bills next month or you’re awaiting the results of a high-stakes medical test, you might be anxious. Our view of the future is often colored by what we are experiencing in the present.

Our hope in the future with God in heaven is also affected by what we believe now. After Nathanael’s declaration that Jesus was the “Son of God” and the “King of Israel,” Jesus said Nathanael would one day see him in glory surrounded by the angels in heaven (John 1:49). That privileged glimpse into the future was predicated on the present—Nathanael’s belief in Jesus.

Nathanael could make that statement of faith because he was so amazed that Jesus saw into his heart, even though they had just met. In that moment, Nathanael knew he was known and loved by God.

That’s why it’s important for us to continually reaffirm our faith. If we doubt that Jesus knows us as well as he knew Nathanael, or if we wonder how he could love us, then we may not be so sure that we will even make it to heaven. We may even think we don’t deserve to live with Jesus forever.

So follow Nathanael’s lead and make your own declaration of faith. Every day, repeat to yourself, “God has known me before I was born. He loves me more than anyone else could. He longs to spend eternity with me.”

Over time, as you internalize these truths, your perspective on the future will change. You’ll begin to look forward to that day in heaven when you finally see Jesus face-to-face. Can you imagine standing before the throne of God, with his angels and archangels “ascending and descending,” just as Jesus promised (John 1:51)?

Heaven is filled with God’s saints and angels, and God wants you to join them. For us who believe, the future couldn’t look brighter!

“Lord, I want to spend eternity with you.”

Daniel 7:9-10, 13-14
Psalm 138:1-5

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Daily Gospel CommentaryCatechism of the Catholic Church
328-332“The angels of God ascend and descend on the Son of Man”“I believe in one God…, Creator of heaven and earth, and of all that is, visible and invisible.” The existence of the spiritual, non-corporeal beings that Sacred Scripture usually calls “angels” is a truth of faith. The witness of Scripture is as clear as the unanimity of Tradition. St. Augustine says: “‘Angel’ is the name of their office, not of their nature. If you seek the name of their nature, it is ‘spirit’; if you seek the name of their office, it is ‘angel’: from what they are, ‘spirit’, from what they do, ‘angel.'” With their whole beings the angels are servants and messengers of God. Because they “always behold the face of my Father who is in heaven” (Mt 18:10),they are the “mighty ones who do his word, hearkening to the voice of his word” (Ps 103:20). As purely spiritual creatures angels have intelligence and will: they are personal and immortal creatures, surpassing in perfection all visible creatures, as the splendor of their glory bears witness (cf Dan 10:9).Christ is the center of the angelic world. They are his angels: “When the Son of man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him” (Mt 25:31). They belong to him because they were created through and for him: “for in him all things were created in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or principalities or authorities – all things were created through him and for him,” (Col 1:16). They belong to him still more because he has made them messengers of his saving plan: “Are they not all ministering spirits sent forth to serve, for the sake of those who are to obtain salvation?” (Heb 1:14).

Angels have been present since creation and throughout the history of salvation, announcing this salvation from afar or near and serving the accomplishment of the divine plan.


CATHOLIC ALMANAC

Saturday, September 29

Liturgical Color: White

Today is the Feast of Sts. Michael, Gabriel, and
Raphael, archangels. They are the only angels
honored by name by the Church. Tradition holds that
we can look to Michael for help to repel Satan,
especially at the hour of death.

—————————————————————–

Regnum Christi

September 29, 2018 – Angelic Company

Feast of Saint Michael, Saint Gabriel and Saint Raphael, Archangels

John 1: 47-51

 

Jesus saw Nathanael coming toward him and said of him, “Here is a true Israelite. There is no duplicity in him.” Nathanael said to him, “How do you know me?” Jesus answered and said to him, “Before Philip called you, I saw you under the fig tree.” Nathanael answered him, “Rabbi, you are the Son of God; you are the King of Israel.” Jesus answered and said to him, “Do you believe because I told you that I saw you under the fig tree? You will see greater things than this.” And he said to him, “Amen, amen, I say to you, you will see the sky opened and the angels of God ascending and descending on the Son of Man.”

 

Introductory Prayer: Lord, I approach this time of prayer earnestly. I believe that you have called me to be faithful and loving in your service. I thank you along with Mary, the saints and the holy angels for the marvelous works of creation. I will humbly try to reflect your greatness to all I meet today by honestly fulfilling my duty.

Petition: Lord, help me be an instrument of your peace and love.

  1. Honesty Is the Best Policy: Once as Jesus spent the whole night in prayer, he searched for apostles that would be honest and sincere. Jesus took a liking to Nathanael when he discovered an Israelite without guile in his heart. Jesus saw Nathanael coming toward him and said of him, “Here is a true Israelite. There is no duplicity in him. It seems that Jesus admired this angelic trait in men. As soon as he saw Philip bringing Nathanael forward to meet him, Jesus immediately noticed the virtue Nathanael lived. If I want to be highly thought of by Jesus, then I need to be sincere in mind and heart.
  1. The Holy Angels: The Church venerates today the holy service of three of the archangels. They stand out for their honest love for God’s most holy will. With such fidelity, St. Gabriel faithfully delivered the most important messages of human history to Zacharias and Mary. St. Michael wrestled with Lucifer and cast him out of heaven. St. Raphael came to the aid of Tobias in the Old Testament. In these angels there isn’t any duplicity of heart. God asks them a favor and they truly fulfill it. Wouldn’t it be wonderful to implement our talents and gifts toward a service of this nature? Wouldn’t it be great to be honest instruments of God’s infinite love like these three archangels?
  1. The Lord’s Gaze: Jesus looks into the heart and doesn’t judge by appearances. Christ’s gaze penetrated Nathanael on this occasion. Jesus penetrates the motives of my heart even though they are kept hidden from the others. Jesus is the first one to know if I am true to the faith I have received. If I am faithful to the dictates of my conscience and obey God’s lead, in private or in public, then I have nothing to hide and nothing to lose. If on the other hand, I am dwindling in my surrender to Christ by boredom and monotony, then it is about time I sought renewal. Christ needs me! How many are dying and fading away because they lack Christ and his love? I, in turn, have been graced by many special spiritual favors! Jesus gazes into my eyes and dreams of my fidelity and love.

Conversation with Christ: Lord, thank you for the example of these three archangels and of the holy apostles. The holy apostles ended up shedding their blood for you and the holy angels aid us on our journey towards you. Lord, seeing so many lacking the faith, I resolve to be your tireless instrument, like them, so that many may come to praise you for all eternity.

Resolution: I will visit the Eucharist (if this is impossible, then kneel before the crucifix) and repeat confidently, Lord I wish to be your instrument – help me!


One Bread, One Body

One Bread, One Body

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All Issues > Volume 34, Issue 5

<< Saturday, September 29, 2018 >> Sts. Michael, Gabriel & Raphael, Archangels
 
Daniel 7:9-10, 13-14 or
Revelation 12:7-12

View Readings
Psalm 138:1-5 John 1:47-51
Similar Reflections
 

THE GOLDEN ARCH AROUND JESUS

 
“As the visions during the night continued, I saw One like a Son of Man coming, on the clouds of heaven; when He reached the Ancient One and was presented before Him, He received dominion, glory, and kingship.” �Daniel 7:13-14
 
In a vision, Daniel saw God’s throne in heaven. “Thousands upon thousands were ministering to Him, and myriads upon myriads attended Him” (Dn 7:10). Angels surround God’s throne and worship Him forever.

Jesus told Nathanael: “I solemnly assure you, you shall see the sky opened and the angels of God ascending and descending on the Son of Man” (Jn 1:51). Angels surround Jesus and center their activity on Him. The angels center on Jesus as they center on God’s throne. Angels are by definition “messengers.” All their messages are directed to the ultimate message: “JESUS CHRIST IS LORD,” that is, God (Phil 2:11).

John, like Daniel, saw “an open door to heaven” (Rv 4:1). He saw God’s throne, and he “heard the voices of every creature in heaven and on earth and under the earth and in the sea; everything in the universe cried aloud: ‘To the One seated on the throne, and to the Lamb, be praise and honor, glory and might, forever and ever!’ ” (Rv 5:13) Jesus is the Lamb of God, Who is God. All angels and all creation exist to worship Him.

Like the angels, we should always think of ourselves on the periphery and Jesus as the Center, Lord, and God. “In the presence of the angels” (Ps 138:1), worship Jesus.

 
Prayer: Father, in the Holy Spirit, I throw my life at Jesus’ feet and worship Him.
Promise: “Now have salvation and power come, the reign of our God and the authority of His Anointed One.” —Rv 12:10
Praise: Teenage Warren played the part of St. Raphael in a play. Before the production, Warren prayed a novena to St. Raphael asking for the grace to touch hearts through the performances.

 

The Holy Guardian Angels

White Greater Double

 

ALTHOUGH THE SOLEMNITY of the 27th of September celebrates the praises of all the nine glorious choirs, yet the piety of the faithful, in the latter ages, desired to have a special day consecrated to the Guardian Angels. Several churches having taken the initiative, and kept the Feast under various rites and on different days, Paul V (1608) authorized its celebration ad libitum. Clement X (1670) established it by precept as a Feast of double rite on the 2nd of October, the first free day after Michaelmas, on which it thus remains in some way dependent.

 

It is of faith, on the testimony of the Scriptures and of unanimous tradition, that God commits to his Angels the guardianship of men, who are called to contemplate him together with these blessed spirits in their common fatherland. Catholic theology teaches that this protection is extended to every member of the human race, without any distinction of just and sinners, infidels and baptized. To ward off dangers; to uphold man in his struggle against the demons; to awaken in him holy thoughts; to prevent him from sinning, and even, at times, to chastise him; to pray for him, and present his prayers to God; such is the office of the Guardian Angel. So special is his mission that one Angel does not undertake the guardianship of several persons simultaneously; so diligent is his care that he follows his ward from the first day to the last of his mortal existence, receiving the soul as it quits this life, and bearing it from the feet of the sovereign Judge to the place it has merited in heaven, or to its temporary sojourn in the place of expiation and purification.

 

It is from the lowest of the nine choirs, the nearest to ourselves, that the Guardian Angels are for the most part selected. God reserves to the Seraphim, Cherubim and Thrones the honor of forming his own immediate court. The Dominations, from the steps of his throne, preside over the government of the universe; the Virtues watch over the course of nature’s laws, the preservation of species, and the movements of the heavens; the Powers hold the spirits of wickedness in subjection. The human race in its entirety, as also its great social bodies, the nations and the churches, are confided to the Principalities; while the Archangels, who preside over smaller communities, seem also to have the office of transmitting to the Angels the commands of God, together with the love and light which come down even to us from the first and highest hierarchy. O the depths of the wisdom of God! Thus, then, the admirable distribution of offices among the choirs of heavenly spirits terminates in the function committed to the lowest rank, the guardianship of man, for whom the universe subsists. Such is the teaching of the School; and the Apostle, in like manner, says: Are they not all ministering spirits, sent to minister for them who shall receive the inheritance of salvation?

 

But God, magnificent as he is towards the whole human race, honors in a special manner the princes of his people, those who are most favored by his grace, or who rule the earth in his name; the Saints testify that a supereminent perfection, or a higher mission in Church or State, ensures to the individual the assistance of a superior spirit, without the Angels, that was first deputed, being necessarily removed from his charge. Moreover, with regard to the work of salvation, the Guardian Angel has no fear of being left alone at his post; at his request, and at God’s command, the troops of his blessed companions who fill heaven and earth are ever ready to lend him their aid. These noble spirits, acting under the eye of God, whose love they desire to second by all possible means, have secret alliances between them, which sometimes induce between their clients even on earth, unions the mystery whereof will be revealed in the light of eternity.

 

“How profound a mystery,” says Origen, “is the apportioning of souls to the Angels destined for their guardians! It is a divine secret, part of the universal economy centered in the Man-God. Nor is it without ineffable order that the ministries of earth, the many departments of nature, are allotted to the heavenly Virtues; fountains and rivers, winds and forests, plants, living creatures of land and sea, whose various functions harmonize together, by the Angels directing them all to a common end.”

 

Again, on these words of Jeremias: How long shall the land mourn? Origen, supported by the authority of his translator St. Jerome, continues. “It is through each one of us that the earth rejoices or mourns; and not only the earth, but water, fire, air, all the elements; by which name we must here understand not insensible matter, but the Angels who are set over all things on earth. There is an Angel of the land who, with his companions, mourns over our crimes. There is an Angel of the waters to whom are applied the words of the Psalm: The waters saw thee, and they were afraid, and the depths were troubled; great was the noise of the waters; the clouds sent out a sound, for thy arrows pass.”

 

How grand is nature, viewed in this light! It is thus the ancients, more truthful as well as more poetical than our generation, always considered the universe. Their error lay in adoring these mysterious powers, to the detriment of the only God, under whom they stoop that bear up the world.

 

“Air and earth and ocean, everything is full of Angels,” says St. Ambrose. “Eliseus, besieged by a whole army, felt no fear; for he beheld invisible cohorts assisting him. May the prophet open thine eyes also, may the enemy, be he legion, not terrify thee; thou thinkest thyself hemmed in, and thou art free: there are more with us than with them.”

 

But let us return to our own specially-deputed Angel, and meditate on this other testimony: “The noble guardian of each one of us sleeps not, nor can he be deceived. Close thy door, and make the darkness of night; but remember, thou art never alone; he has no need of daylight in order to see thy actions.” And who is it that speaks thus? Not a Father of the Church, but a pagan, the slave-philosopher Epictetus.

 

In conclusion, let us listen to the Abbot of Clairvaux, who here gives free reign to his eloquence: “In every place show respect to thy Angel. Let gratitude for his benefits incite thee to honor his greatness. Love this thy future coheir, the guardian appointed for thee by the Father during thy childhood. For though we are sons of God, we are as yet but children, and long and dangerous is our journey. But God hath given his Angels charge over thee, to keep thee in all thy ways. In their hands they shall bear thee up, lest thou dash thy foot against a stone. Thou shalt walk upon the asp and the basilisk; and thou shalt trample under foot the lion and the dragon. Yes; where the road is smooth enough for a child, they will content themselves with guiding thee, and sustaining thy footsteps, as one does for children. But if trials threaten to surpass thy strength, they will bear thee up in their hands. Oh! those hands of Angels! Thanks to them, what fearful straits we have passed through, as it were without thinking, and with no other impression left upon us than that of a nightmare suddenly dispelled!”

 

And in his commentary on the Canticle of Canticles, St. Bernard thus describes the triumph of the Angel: “One of the companions of the Spouse, sent from heaven to the chosen soul as mediator; on witnessing the mystery accomplished, how he exults, and says: I give thee thanks, O God of majesty, for having granted the desire of her heart! Now it was he that, as a persevering friend, had not ceased, on the way, to murmur into the soul’s ear: Delight in the Lord, and he will give thee the requests of thy heart; and again: Expect the Lord, and keep his way; and then: If he make any delay, wait for him, for he will surely come and will not tarry. Meanwhile he represented to our Lord the soul’s desire, saying: As the hart panteth after the fountains of water, so this soul panteth after thee, O God; have pity on her, hear her cries, and visit her in her desolation. And now the faithful paranymph, the confidant of ineffable secrets, is not jealous. He goes from the Spouse to the bride, offering desires, bringing back gifts; he incites the one, he appeases the other. Sometimes, even in this world, he brings them into each other’s presence, either by raising up the Bride in ecstasy, or by bringing down the Bridegroom; for he is one of the household, and well known in the palace; and he fears no rebuff, for every day he beholds the face of the Father.”

 

Blessed be ye, O holy Angels, for that your charity is not wearied out by the crimes of men; among so many other benefits, we thank you for keeping the earth habitable, by deigning to dwell always therein. Solitude often weighs heavily upon the hearts of God’s children; in the great towns, and in the paths of the world, where one meets only strangers or enemies; but if the number of the just grows less, yours never diminishes. In the midst of the excited multitude, as well as in the desert, not a human being that has not beside him an Angel, the representative of universal Providence over wicked and good alike. O blessed spirits! you and we have the same fatherland, the same thought, the same love; why should the confused noises of a frivolous crowd disturb the heavenly life we may lead even now with you? Does the tumult of public places hinder you from holding your choirs there, or prevent the Most High from hearing your harmonies? We also, beholding by faith the face of our heavenly Father, which you ever delightedly contemplate, we wish to sing in every place the praises of our Lord and to unite at all times our adorations with yours. Thus, when our manners have become altogether angelic, the present life will be full of peace, and we shall be well prepared for eternity.

 

Information: Guardian Angels

Feast Day: October 2

8 things to know and share about the Guardian Angels
Pope thanks boy for entrusting him to guardian angel
Feast of the Guardian Angels
What Do You Know About Your Guardian Angels?
Pope: With The Guardian Angels God Takes Care of The Entire Life of Every Man
Feast of Guardian Angels – to light and guard, to rule and guide
Archangels and Guardian Angels
The 12 most important things to know about angels

The True Role of Guardian Angels
Touched by Padre Pio’s guardian angels [Catholic Caucus]
Celebrating Guardian Angels – October 2 – Feast of the Guardian Angels [Ecumenical]
Guardian Angels
OF GUARDIAN ANGELS AND THE ROLE THEY PLAY NOT JUST ON EARTH BUT IN PURGATORY [Catholic Caucus]
Our Guardian Angels [Ecumenical]
Her unborn ‘guardian angels’ inspire pro-life work
Question: “Are there really such things as guardian angels?”
Guardian angels caught on film?
Early Christians Representations of Angels[Feast day Guardian Angels]

Catholic Culture

Ordinary Time: October 2nd

Memorial of the Guardian Angels

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Old Calendar: The Holy Guardian Angels

Each person on earth has a guardian angel who watches over him and helps him to attain his salvation. It has been a common theological opinion that this angelical guardianship begins at the moment of birth; prior to this, the child would be protected by the mother’s guardian angel. But this is not certain, and since we now know that the soul is infused at the moment of conception, it may be that the angelic guardianship also begins at that moment. In any case, this protection continues throughout our whole life and ceases only when our probation on earth ends, namely, at the moment of death. Our guardian angel accompanies our soul to purgatory or heaven, and becomes our coheir in the heavenly kingdom.

 


Guardian Angels
Angels are servants and messengers from God. “Angel” in Greek means messenger. In unseen ways the angels help us on our earthly pilgrimage by assisting us in work and study, helping us in temptation and protecting us from physical danger.

The idea that each soul has assigned to it a personal guardian angel has been long accepted by the Church and is a truth of our faith. From the Gospel of today’s liturgy we read: “See that you do not despise one of these little ones, for I say to you that their angels in heaven always look upon the face of my heavenly Father” (Matthew 18:10). The Catechism of the Catholic Church states that “the existence of the spiritual, non-corporeal beings that Sacred Scripture usually calls ‘angels’ is a truth of faith (328).” From our birth until our death, man is surrounded by the protection and intercession of angels, particularly our guardian angel: “Beside each believer stands an angel as protector and shepherd leading him to life (336).” The Church thanks God for our helpers, the angels, particularly on this feast day and September 29 which is the feast of Saint Michael, Saint Gabriel, and Saint Raphael, archangels. Today’s feast appeared in Spain during the sixteenth century. It was extended to the universal Church and made obligatory in 1670.

 

Be alert in your every action as one should be who is accompanied by angels in all your ways, for that mission has been enjoined upon them. In whatever lodging, in whatever nook or corner you may find yourself, cherish a reverence for your guardian angel. In his presence do not dare to do anything you would not do in mine. Or do you doubt his presence because you do not see him? Would it really help if you did hear him, or touch him, or smell him? Remember, there are realities whose existence has not been proven by mere sight.

 

Brethren, we will love God’s angels with a most affectionate love; for they will be our heavenly co-heirs some day, these spirits who now are sent by the Father to be our protectors and our guides. With such bodyguards, what are we to fear? They can neither be subdued nor deceived; nor is there any possibility at all that they should go astray who are to guard us in all our ways. They are trustworthy, they are intelligent, they are strong — why, then, do we tremble? We need only to follow them, remain close to them, and we will dwell in the protection of the Most High God. So as often as you sense the approach of any grave temptation or some crushing sorrow hangs over you, invoke your protector, your leader, your helper in every situation. Call out to him and say: Lord, save us, we are perishing. —St. Bernard

Patron: Spanish police officers.

Symbols: usually portrayed as beardless, sexless beings, winged, human in form and barefooted, usually carrying objects such as a pilgrim’s staff, scroll, book, a sceptre or a sword.

Things to Do:

  • Memorize and pray the Angel of God prayer.
  • Bake an angel food cake, serve angel hair pasta, and/or make angel kisses (meringue cookies).
  • Read from the Catholic Culture Library:

     

  • Read the section on angels in the Directory on Popular Piety and Liturgy. The document examines the doctrine and devotions of the angels. Devotion to angels is good, but also can have deviations:

    “Devotion to the Holy Angels gives rise to a certain form of the Christian life which is characterized by:

    • devout gratitude to God for having placed these heavenly spirits of great sanctity and dignity at the service of man;
    • an attitude of devotion deriving from the knowledge of living constantly in the presence of the Holy Angels of God — serenity and confidence in facing difficult situations, since the Lord guides and protects the faithful in the way of justice through the ministry of His Holy Angels. Among the prayers to the Guardian Angels the Angele Dei is especially popular, and is often recited by families at morning and evening prayers, or at the recitation of the Angelus.

    “217. Popular devotion to the Holy Angels [which is legitimate and good] can, however, also give rise to possible deviations:

     

    • when, as sometimes can happen, the faithful are taken by the idea that the world is subject to demiurgical struggles, or an incessant battle between good and evil spirits, or Angels and daemons, in which man is left at the mercy of superior forces and over which he is helpless; such cosmologies bear little relation to the true Gospel vision of the struggle to overcome the Devil, which requires moral commitment, a fundamental option for the Gospel, humility and prayer;
    • when the daily events of life, which have nothing or little to do with our progressive maturing on the journey towards Christ are read schematically or simplistically, indeed childishly, so as to ascribe all setbacks to the Devil and all success to the Guardian Angels. The practice of assigning names to the Holy Angels should be discouraged, except in the cases of Gabriel, Raphael and Michael whose names are contained in Holy Scripture.”
  • Also read All About the Angels.
  • Read about saints and others who had a great devotion to their guardian angel (St. Josemaria Escriva; St. Padre Pio; Blessed John XXIII).
  • Think about how you can develop a greater devotion and depend on your guardian angel everyday.

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Marriage = One Man and One Woman Until Death Do Us Part

October 2, 2019

Today on the feast of the Guardian Angels, say a prayer to your family’s guardian angels, to protect everyone from natural and supernatural harm.

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Regnum Christi

October 2, 2019 – Heavenly Helpers

Memorial of the Guardian Angels

Father Edward McIlmail, LC

Matthew 18: 1-5, 10

The disciples approached Jesus and said, “Who is the greatest in the Kingdom of heaven?” He called a child over, placed it in their midst, and said, “Amen, I say to you, unless you turn and become like children, you will not enter the Kingdom of heaven. Whoever humbles himself like this child is the greatest in the Kingdom of heaven. And whoever receives one child such as this in my name receives me. See that you do not despise one of these little ones, for I say to you that their angels in heaven always look upon the face of my heavenly Father.”

Introductory Prayer: Father in heaven, thank you for giving me another day to grow in love for you, another day to move ahead in my spiritual life, another day to pray for the souls closest to me. I want only to please you during this brief time of prayer.

Petition: Lord, grant me the grace of childlike simplicity.

  1. Turning the Tables: The disciples are curious about the Kingdom of Heaven, and their curiosity has a tinge of self-interest. They want to know how to get ahead in the Kingdom. Their very question belies a misunderstanding of Christ. The Kingdom, among other things, is reflected in the Church on earth. And the Church, being universal, is a kind of family that takes in all mankind. If ever we ask, “Who is the greatest in our family?” we can be sure that it is the wrong kind of question. The more appropriate question is: “How can I be a better member of the family? How can I be a better husband? A better wife? A better son or daughter or brother or sister?” That is the question Christ wants us to ask ourselves.
  1. Child’s Play: We must not think that Christ had a naive notion of children as little angels who never do wrong. So why does Christ hold up children as models for the rest of us? In part, it is their simplicity, their tendency to trust. They might not understand why a parent tells them something, but they likely will accept it because they realize it comes from someone who loves them. The spiritual life requires that same kind of trust. We might not understand completely why God asks us to do something, but if there’s a basic trust and openness to him, it is easier to follow his commands. Many people, unfortunately, squander what should be the most productive years of their lives because they doubt God and his Church. They complicate things, only to find years later the wisdom of what Our Lord was trying to tell them. By then, their faults can be forgiven, but not undone. Once a vase is broken, it can be fixed but it will never be the same as if it had never broken. Am I saying no to God because of a lack of trust?
  1. Angelic Aid: Prayers to guardian angels used to be popular with Catholics. It is fitting that we pray to them, because each of us has one. “Beside each believer stands an angel as protector and shepherd leading him to life,” writes St. Basil (see Catechism of the Catholic Church, 336). Our angel reflects God’s loving providence for our welfare and protection. The world is a moral minefield, waiting for us to make the wrong step. Our angel helps us make it through this valley of tears. Do I ever think to pray to my angel?

Conversation with Christ: The simplicity of children can make me look foolish by comparison. I believe in you and trust you, Lord. Help me to translate that trust into serenity and simplicity. Let me accept the crosses of daily life with calmness, seeing your loving designs behind them.

Resolution: I will say “yes” to the next difficult thing someone asks of me, so long as it is something morally good.

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One Bread, One Body

One Bread, One Body

Language: English | Espanol

All Issues > Volume 35, Issue 6

<< Wednesday, October 2, 2019 >> Guardian Angels
 
Exodus 23:20-23
View Readings
Psalm 91:1-6, 10-11 Matthew 18:1-5, 10
Similar Reflections
 

ON GUARD!

 
“For to His angels He has given command about you, that they guard you in all your ways.” �Psalm 91:11
 
When thousands of people are killed in a tragedy, the question arises: “What happened to their guardian angels? They didn’t seem to do such a good job of guarding their charges.” The response to this question is wrapped in another question: “Why did Jesus’ guardian angels let Him be crucified?” Jesus stopped the angels from protecting Him. He said: “Do you not suppose I can call on My Father to provide at a moment’s notice more than twelve legions of angels?” (Mt 26:53) Jesus might also choose to stop angels from protecting others, especially those baptized into Him. He wants to include us in the Paschal mystery of His death and Resurrection. Guarding us from natural evils is insufficient. The Lord wants to guard us from the worst evils: sin and damnation. To do this, He lets us share through suffering in His Paschal mystery.

Although the guardian angels primarily guard us from the worst evils, that is, spiritual evils, they also guard us from natural evils. It may well be that many of us would have died several times but for God’s protection through our guardian angels.

Guardian angels are very active for those living in the Holy Spirit, for their job is to mow down the enemies of those moving in the Holy Spirit (see Ex 23:20ff). If we are what we are called to be, the guardian angels will be able to do what they are called to do.

 
Prayer: Father, may I live a life conducive to full angelic activity.
Promise: “See that you never despise one of these little ones. I assure you, their angels in heaven constantly behold My heavenly Father’s face.” —Mt 18:10
Praise: Referring to Guardian Angels, the Catechism of the Catholic Church states, “From its beginning until death, human life is surrounded by their watchful care and intercession” (Catechism, 336). They not only protect individual souls but also communities, dioceses, and nations.

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