Wednesday, September 29, 2010

FEAST OF THE ARCHANGELS

Today’s feast began in the fifth century when a basilica in Rome was dedicated in honor of the Archangel Michael. In the past each of the three Archangels whom we honor today had a separate feast day but now they are celebrated together. They are a reminder to us, as the Catechism of the Catholic Church states in #358, “God created everything for man….” This means that even those spiritual creatures, the angels, were created for humanity, to help us, to guide us, to protect us, and to deliver important messages to us. We see this in the Bible accounts of the three Archangels. Michael is called “the great prince, guardian of Your people” in the Book of Daniel 12: 1 and in the Book of Revelation he leads the angels in battle against the angels who through their rebellion have become devils (12: 7). Gabriel also appears in Daniel (8: 16, 9: 21) but is known primarily as the messenger of salvation who appeared to Mary at the Annunciation (Luke 1: 26-37). Finally, Raphael appears in the Book of Tobit where he serves as a guide and brings about healing. Let us invoke these three heavenly friends of ours and ask them to guide and protect the Holy Father and the entire Church.

St. Michael, the Archangel, defend us against the enemies of our souls, protect us always, and guide us to our eternal home where we will praise the Holy Trinity with all the powers of heaven forever and ever. Amen.

St. Gabriel, Divine Messenger, you were sent to the Blessed Virgin Mary to announce to her our salvation. At the end of our days on earth, at the hour of our death, greet us with the message of our salvation so that we may, with you, praise God—the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit, forever and ever. Amen.

St. Raphael, the Archangel, you were sent to guide young Tobiah on his trip and to cure the elderly Tobit of his blindness. Guide us on our earthly journey and be our physician, taking care of all our ailments of body and soul. Amen.

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