Saint/Holy Michael the Archangel and the other Angels were created by God before He had finished creating and ordering the earth – on the fourth day – the “lights” or stars in the sky were probably the Angels. The Angels did not deserve to be in Heaven face to Face with God, so He tested their loyalty, so that those, who put pleasing Him, first, before anything else, would be rewarded with an eternity in Heaven, and those, who would not do His Will would spend an eternity in hell, in never-ending horror. The Angels are created spirits, who have no material body, naturally, although they can assume any shape they wish to assume. They have perfect intelligence and can move from one end of the universe to the other at the speed of thought. Since they are not distracted by senses and sensual input – they have no need to eat, drink, breathe, sleep, etc.; they cannot change their minds once they have made a decision, because they have all of the facts necesssary to make a good decision without many of the factors, which can cloud the judgment of human beings.
Since God sees everything in Heaven, on earth, and in all of the universe at the same time – time is a created thing – He knew from all eternity that His Son would take the Form of a Human Being, live, suffer, and die, to redeem mankind from its sin. He also knew that there would be Angels and even human beings, who would not accept this Wondrous Gift of Redemption, but He, as God, had and has a right to demand that His creatures put Him before everyone and everything else. If not for God, no creature would ever have been created, because He created and creates them out of nothing, which no one else has the capability to do. If God forgot the Angels, they would not exist, because He Is The One, Who keeps them in existence.
According to The Mystical City of God, by Venerable Mary of Agreda, a wonderful 4-volume set of information from Visions of The Blessed Virgin Mary, which several Popes have approved, Lucifer – “light-bearer” or “daystar”, was created the most beautiful of all of the Angels. He was/is a Seraph, the choir of Angels, which is closest to God. Normally, Seraphs/Seraphim have six wings, but Lucifer had/has twelve wings, so he probably had a problem with pride from the moment that he noticed how much difference there was between him and the other Seraphim, let alone the rest of the Angels. The Angels were shown that God The Son was going to take the Form of a Human Being, and they knew that human beings would be much weaker and less intelligent than they were, so that was bad enough in and of itself for them. But, when God showed them that God The Son was also going to humble Himself so far as to be actually BORN of a human mother, that was it! Lucifer, even though he knew that God Was and Is Almighty and that he would be separated from God for eternity if he did not serve Him, he still decided to say very vehemently: “Non serviat!” “I will not serve!” meaning that he would not serve or obey God and assent to His future plans.
The war was on! Mi-cha-el’s, (“el” means God) battle-cry was “Who is like God?!” meaning to say to Lucifer: “Just who do you think that you are trying to oppose The One and Only God?!” The Holy Archangels were at a much lower level than the Seraphim, but Michael led two thirds of the Angels against lucifer and the other third of the various choirs of angels, which followed him, and, of course, Michael won. After that, Holy Archangel Michael was placed at the head of the other Angels, and he and Holy Archangel Gabriel and Holy Archangel Raphael are three of the chief messengers of God. September 29th used to be only the Feast of Holy Archangel Michael, but the new calendar places all three Holy Archangels on that Feast. In the traditional calendar, Holy Archangel Raphael’s Feast is on October 24th, and Holy Archangel Gabriel’s Feast is on March 24th, the Eve of The Feast of The Annunciation, which definitely makes sense.
The first and most important duty of any Angel is to adore, love, and praise our Lord before His Throne. Then, those, who leave Heaven, are to console those in Purgatory and to help all of those on earth to reach Heaven.
St. Michael/Holy Archangel “Michael is Patron of knights, policemen, soldiers, paramedics, ambulance drivers, etc., and also for safety at sea, for the sick, and for a holy death (after St. Joseph). He is usually depicted in art, carrying a sword and/or shield, battling satan.”Taken from: http://fisheaters.com/customstimeafterpentecost10.html
Very powerful, short prayer:
“St. Michael, St. Michael, Angel of Light, in this grave moment, show forth Thy Might. Amen.” (9 times or continually in emergency)
There are nine choirs of Angels, listed in order of closeness to God: Seraph, plural – Seraphim, Cherub, pl. -Cherubim, the Thrones, Dominions, Principalities, Powers, Virtues, Archangels, Angels. The Choir of “Angels” must include the “Guardian Angels”. Each Angel is a separate species in and of itself.
Saint Gabriel, the Archangel:
(Father Prosper Gueranger 1870)
“Gabriel is one of the first of the Angelic Kingdom. He tells Zachary, that he stands before The Face of God (St. Luke, i. 19.). He is the Angel of The Incarnation, because it is in This Mystery, which apparently is so humble, that The Power of God is principally manifested: and Gabriel signifies The Strength of God. We find the Archangel preparing for his sublime office, even in the Old Testament. First of all, he appears to Daniel, after this Prophet had had the vision of the Persian and Grecian Empires; and such was the majesty of his person that Daniel fell on his face trembling (Dan. vii.17). Shortly afterwards, he appears again to the same Prophet, telling him the exact time of the coming of the Messias: Know thou and take notice: that from the going forth of the word to build up Jerusalem again, unto Christ The Prince, there shall be seven weeks and sixty-two weeks (Ibid. ix. 25), that is, sixty-nine weeks of years.When the fulness of time had come, and Heaven was about to send the last of the Prophets, he, who after preaching to men the approach of the Messias, is to show him to the people, saying: Behold The Lamb of God, Who taketh away the sins of the world, Gabriel descends from Heaven to the temple of Jerusalem, and prophesies to Zachary the birth of John the Baptist (St. Luke, i. 13), which was to be followed by that of Jesus Himself.
Six months later on, the holy Archangel again appears on the earth; and this time it is Nazareth, that he visits. He brings the great message from Heaven. Angel, as he is, he reveres The Humble Maid, whose name is Mary; he has been sent to Her by The Most High God, to offer Her the immense honor of becoming The Mother of The Eternal Word. It is Gabriel, that receives the great Fiat, the consent of Mary; and when he quits this earth, he leaves it in possession of Him, for whom it had so long prayed in those words of Isaias: Drop down Dew, O ye Heavens (Is. xlv. 8.)!
The hour at length came, when The Mother of The Emmanuel was to bring forth The Blessed Fruit of Her Virginal Womb. Jesus was born amidst poverty; but Heaven willed that His Crib should be surrounded by fervent adorers. An Angel appeared to some Shepherds, inviting them to go to the Stable near Bethlehem. He is accompanied by a multitude of the heavenly army, sweetly singing their hymn: ‘Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace to men of good will!’ Who is this Angel that speaks to the Shepherds, and seems as the chief of the other blessed Spirits, that are with him? In the opinion of several learned writers, it is the Archangel Gabriel, who is keeping up his ministry as Messenger of the Good Tidings (St. Luke, ii. 10).
Lastly, when Jesus is suffering His Agony in the Garden of Gethsemani, an Angel appears to Him, not merely as a witness of His Suffering, but that he might strengthen Him…” (Ibid. xxii. 42, 43.). Who is this Angel? It is Gabriel, as we learn not only from the writings of several holy and learned authors, but also from a Hymn, which the Holy See has permitted to be used in the Liturgy, and which we give below.
These are the claims of the great Archangel to our veneration and love; these are the proofs he gives of his deserving his beautiful name, The Strength of God. God has employed him in each stage of the great work, in which he has chiefly manifested his power, for Jesus, even on His Cross, Is The Power of God (1 Cor. i. 21.), as the Apostle tells us. Gabriel prepares the way for Jesus. He foretells the precise time of His Coming; he announces the birth of His Precursor; he is present at the solemn moment when the Word Is Made Flesh; he invites the Shepherds of Bethlehem to come to the Crib, and adore The Divine Babe; and when Jesus, in His Agony, is to receive Strength from one of His own creatures, Gabriel is found ready in the Garden of Gethsemani, as he had been at Nazareth and Bethlehem.
Let us, then, honour the Angel of The Incarnation. For this purpose, let us recite in his praise some of the pieces, which liturgical piety has composed for his Feast.
The two following Hymns are from the Franciscan Breviary:
Let us all exult with joyous hearts, and strike the tuneful lyre; ’tis the great Gabriel that comes in all his brightness from the high heavens.
This is the feast of the glorious Virgin’s Messenger, and with him comes the whole host of Angels, singing in varied hymns the praises of Christ.
Let our choir, therefore, sing the praises of Gabriel the Prince, for he is one of the Seven that stand before the Lord, and do his biddings.
Gabriel cheerfully descends whithersoever God wills, for he is the Messenger of heaven, nay the mediator that reveals to the world the secret decrees of the Omnipotent God.
Be thou, O Gabriel, we beseech thee, Messenger to us of the special gift of eternal peace, wherewith we may finally reach Heaven, and everlastingly rejoice.
May The Godhead Ever Blessed of Father, Son, and Holy Ghost, Whose Glory is proclaimed through the whole world, grant us this our prayer. Amen.
‘Tis the midnight hour: quickly arise, and sing your new canticles to the Lord; for it was at this hour that was sent the most welcome messenger of life to the world.
It was at this hour that the Virgin’s womb brought forth our Lord, for the salvation of mankind: and it was at the same, that He arose from the grave, having defeated his enemies.
Let us, then, arise, and in our humble choral prayers, make supplication to the heavenly Spirits; let us pray especially to the God, Who gave us an Angel to guard us.
What tongue of man could tell the blessings brought by Gabriel to the world? He it is that leads holy souls to heaven, there to contemplate our Lord.
We beseech thee, therefore, great Prince, pray for us miserable sinners. Propitiate Him that can do all things, and obtain for us His pardon. Amen
The Dominican breviary contains this beautiful Hymn in honor of the Holy Archangel:
Gabriel, Angel of light, and Strength of God! whom our Emmanuel selected from the rest of the heavenly Princes, that thou shouldst expound unto Daniel the mystery of the savage goat.
Thou didst joyfully hasten to the Prophet as he prayed, and didst tell him of the sacred Weeks, which were to give us The Birth of The King of Heaven, and enrich us with plenteous joy.
‘Twas Thou didst bring to the parents of the Baptist the wondrous and gladsome tidings, that Elizabeth, though barren, and Zachary, though old, should have a son.
What the Prophets had foretold from the beginning of the world, this Thou didst announce in all the fulness of The Mystery to The Holy Virgin, telling her that she was to be The True Mother of God.
Thou, fair Spirit, didst fill the Bethlehem Shepherds with joy, when Thou didst tell them the heavenly tidings; and with Thee a host of Angels sang the praises of The Newborn God.
As Jesus was in prayer on that last night, when a Bloody Sweat bathed His Limbs, Thou didst leave Heaven to be near Him, and offer Him the Chalice, that His Father willed Him to drink.
O Blessed Trinity! strengthen Catholic hearts with the heavenly gift of Faith. Give us grace, as we to Thee give glory forever. Amen.
The whole human race is indebted to Thee, O Gabriel! and, on this day, we would fain pay thee the honor and gratitude we owe thee. Thou wast moved to holy compassion when seeing the miseries of the world; for all flesh had corrupted its way, and the forgetfulness of God increased with each new generation of men. Then did The Most High commission Thee to bring to the world the good tidings of its Salvation. How beautiful thy steps, O Prince of the heavenly court, as Thou camest down to this our humble sphere! How tender and fraternal is Thy love of man, whose nature, though so inferior to Thine own, was to be raised, by The Mystery of The Incarnation, to Union with God, Himself! With what respectful awe didst Thou not approach The Virgin, who surpassed all of the Angels in holiness!
Blessed Messenger of our Redemption! whom God selects as His Minister when He would show His Power, we beseech Thee, offer the homage of our gratitude to Him, that thus sent Thee. Help us to pay the immense debt we owe to The Father, Who so loved the world, as to give it His Only Begotten Son (St. John, iii. 16.); to the Son, Who emptied himself, taking the Form of a Servant; and to The Holy Ghost, Who rested on the Flower that sprang up out of the root of Jesse (Is. xi. 1).
‘Twas Thou, O Gabriel! that taughtest us the salutation, wherewith we should greet Mary ‘Full of Grace. Thou wast the first to pronounce these sublime words, which Thou broughtest from Heaven. The children of The Church are now, day and night, repeating these words of Thine; pray for us, that we may say them in such a manner, as that our Blessed Mother may find them worthy of Her acceptance.
Angel of Strength, Friend of Mankind! relent not in thy ministry of aiding us. We are surrounded by terrible enemies; our weakness makes them bold: come to our assistance; get us courage. Pray for us during these days of conversion and penance. Obtain for us the knowledge of all, that we owe to God in consequence of That Ineffable Mystery of The Incarnation, of which Thou wast the first witness. We have forgotten our duties to the Man-God, and we have offended Him: enlighten us, that so, henceforth, we may be faithful to His teachings and examples. Raise up our thoughts to The Happy Abode, where Thou dwellest; assist us to merit the places left vacant by the fallen angels, for God has reserved them for His Elect among men.
Pray, O Gabriel, for The Church Militant, and defend her against the attacks of hell. The times are evil; the spirits of malice are let loose, nor can we make stand against them, unless with God’s Help. It is by His Holy Angels that He gives victory to His Spouse. Be Thou, O Strength of God! foremost in the ranks. Drive heresy back, keep schism down, foil the false wisdom of men, frustrate the policy of the world, arouse the well-minded from apathy; that thus, The Christ, Whom Thou didst announce, may reign over the earth He has redeemed, and that we may sing together with Thee and the whole angelic choir: ‘Glory be to God! Peace to men!'”
(taken from http://catholicharboroffaithandmorals.com/Gabriel.html)
Saint Raphael, the Archangel:
The name of this blessed Angel signifies “cure” of God. He is, according to his own testimony to Tobias, one of the seven Spirits who stand before the Throne of God. From having so safely conducted that good man on his journey to Rages, and the many helps afforded by him during his stay in that city, he should be invoked by travelers and voyagers, persons about to contract the sacred matrimonial engagement, as well as those engaged in trade and commerce. Indeed, all should beg his assistance, all being strangers and pilgrims upon earth, and standing in a greater or lesser need of it.Aspiration–O Angel of God, illumine, defend and preserve me this day, and for ever.
Sermon of St. Bonaventure Bishop Lesson IV
Raphael is interpreted, “medicine of God.” Note that Raphael heals us by bestowing three benefits to cure us of evil. Raphael the physician heals the illness of our souls by leading us to the bitterness of contrition. Therefore in the book of Tobias it is said, “When thou shalt enter thy house, anoint his eyes with gall.” Tobias did so, his father’s eyes were healed, and he saw. Why could Raphael not do this himself? Because an angel can not give contrition, he can merely point the way. The gall symbolizes the bitterness of contrition which heals the inner eye of the mind. As the psalm say, “Who heals the broken heart.” The bitterness of contrition is the best eye salve. In the second chapter of Judges it is related that the angel ascended to the place of the weepers and said to the people, “I have led you out of the land of Egypt, I have done for you so many and such good things.” All the people wept so that the place is called the place of the weepers. Dearly beloved, all day long the angels tell us of the blessings of God and recall them to our memories. Who created you? Who redeemed you? What have you done? Whom have you offended? If you consider these things you have no recourse but to weep.
In the second place, Raphael leads us out of the devil’s bondage by recalling to our minds the passion of Christ. This is expressed figuratively in the sixth chapter of Tobias. Raphael says, “If thou wilt place a little piece of its heart upon the coals, the smoke thereof driveth away all kinds of devils.” In the eighth chapter we read that Tobias did place the little piece of its heart upon the coals, and that Raphael bound the devil in the desert of upper Egypt. What does this mean? Could not Raphael have bound the devil if the heart had not been placed upon the coals? Did the heart of a fish give such great power to an Angel? Not at all. The heart of the fish in itself could do nothing; its significance lies in it as a mystical figure. Here we are to understand that there is today nothing which can free us from the slavery of the devil but the passion of Christ. This proceeded from the depths of his heart, namely form His love. The heart is the warm fountain of all life. If therefore you place upon the coals, that is upon your kindled memory, the heart of Christ, that is the passion He underwent which sprang from the root of charity and font of all warm affection, the devil will be bound instantly. He can not harm you.
Thirdly, Raphael frees us from the wrath of God which we incur by sinning against God. He does this by inducing us to pray earnestly. This is what Raphael the Archangel told Tobias in the twelfth chapter, “When thou didst pray with tears, I offered thy prayer to the Lord.” the angels themselves, so far as they are able, try to reconcile us with God. The devils are our accusers before God. The angels excuse us when they offer to God the prayers they have induced us to say devoutly. This we read in the eighth chapter of the Apocalypse, “The smoke of the incense ascended in the sight of God from the hands of the Angel.” Those sweet fragrant spices are the prayers of the saints Would you appease God whom you have offended? Pray then with fervor. The angels offer your prayer to God in order to reconcile you with him. In like manner, it is related that when Christ was in agony in the garden, he prayed the more earnestly. An angel appeared and comforted Him. All this was done for our sake. Christ had no need to be comforted. Rather was it done to show that the Angels help those who pray earnestly, that they help them willingly, comfort them and offer their prayers to God.
From the Roman Breviary
Hymn for the Feast of St. Raphael, at Vespers
Life and strength of all who live!
In the presence of the angels,
Glory to Thy name we give;
And Thy wondrous praise rehearse,
Singing in alternate verse.Hail, too, ye angelic powers!
Hail, ye thrones celestial!
Hail, Physician of salvation!
Guide of life, blest Raphael
Who the foe of all mankind
Didst in links of iron bind.
Oh may Christ, by thy protection,
Shelter us from harm this day;
Keep us pure in flesh and spirit;
Save us from the enemy;
and vouchsafe us, of His grace,
In His Paradise a place.
Glory to the Almighty Father,
Sing we now in anthems sweet;
Glory to the great Redeemer,
Glory to the Paraclete;
Three in one, and one in three,
Througout all eternity. Amen
Prayer for Safe Travel
The following prayer is an adaptation of the itinerarium, the prayer said by clerics to invoke God’s protection before beginning a journey. The faithful who are about to travel may us this form to pray for God’s blessing on their journeys.
A long the ways of peace and prosperity may The Almighty and Merciful Lord lead us, and may the Angel Raphael accompany us on the journey. So may we in peace, health, and joy return unto our own.
Let us Pray:
O God, who didst lead the sons of Israel through the sea over a dry path, and didst reveal the way to the three Magi by the guidance of a star; vouchsafe to grant us a happy journey and a peaceful time, that accompanied by Thy angel we may safely reach our present destination, and come finally to the haven of eternal salvation.
O God, who didst lead Thy servant, Abraham, out of Ur of the Chaldeans, safeguarding him on all his wanderings– guide us Thy servants, we implore Thee. Be Thou unto us support in battle, refuge in journeying, shade in the heat, covering in the rain and cold, a carriage in tiredness, protection in adversity, a staff in insecurity, a harbor in shipwreck; so that under Thy leadership we may successfully reach our destination, and finally return safe to our homes.
Give ear, we pray Thee, Lord, to our entreaties! And direct the steps of Thy servants on the paths of righteousness, that in all the vicissitudes of the journey and of life, we may have Thee as our constant protector.
Grant, O almighty God, that Thy children march forth on a successful journey; and heeding the exhortation of Blessed John, the Precursor, let them come safely to Him whom John foretold, Jesus Christ, Thy Son, our Lord, who liveth and reigneth with Thee in the unity of the Holy Spirit, God, forever and ever. Amen.
Hymn: Placare, Christe
O Christ, thy servants’ wanderings spare;
For whom Thy Maiden-Mother’s prayer
Beseeches at Thy throne of grace
Mercy before the Father’s face.
Be near us, Angel from on high,
Whose name God’s might doth signify;
Strengthen the weak with ceaseless ward,
And to the sad thine help afford.
Ye ninefold ranks of Angel-choirs,
Whose order for our help conspires,
All past and present ills dispel,
From future danger guard us well.
Drive far away in shamed disgrace
From Christian lands the faithless race;
That so the rule one Shepherd hold
Over one flock, one single fold.
T o God the Father praise be done,
Who hath redeemed us through His Son,
Anoints us by the Holy Ghost,
And guards us by the Angel-host. Amen
Prayer for a Christian Family
O God of goodness and mercy, to Thy Fatherly protection we commend our family, our household and all that belongs to us. We commit all to Thy love and keeping; do Thou fill this house with Thy blessings even as Thou didst fill the holy House of Nazareth with Thy Presence.
O Mary, Mother of grace and of mercy, defend us against the wicked spirit, reconcile us with Thy Son, commit us to His keeping, that so we may be made worthy of His promises.
Saint Joseph, foster-father of our Saviour, guardian of His holy Mother, head of the Holy Family, intercede for us, bless us and defend our home at all times.
Saint Michael, defend us against all the wicked cunning of hell.
Saint Gabriel, make us to understand the holy Will of God.
Saint Raphael, keep us free from all sickness and from every danger to our lives.
Our holy Guardian Angels, keep our feet safely on the path of salvation both day and night.
Our holy Patrons, pray for us before the throne of God.
Yea, bless this house, O God the Father, Who hast created us; O God the Son, Who hast suffered for us upon the holy Cross, and Thou, O Holy Spirit, Who hast sanctified us in holy Baptism. May the one God in three divine Persons preserve our bodies, purify our minds, direct our hearts and bring us all to everlasting life.
Glory be to the Father, glory be to the Son, glory be to the Holy Ghost! Amen.”
(taken from: http://catholicharboroffaithandmorals.com/St.%20Raphael%20Popup.html)
Creation and the Angels
Lesson 4 from the Baltimore Cathechism
35. What do we mean when we say that God is the Creator of heaven and earth?
When we say that God is the Creator of heaven and earth we mean that He made all things from nothing by His almighty power.
I am the Lord God, that make all things, that alone stretch out the heavens, that establish the earth. (Isaiah 44:24)
36. Which are the chief creatures of God?
The chief creatures of God are angels and men.
Thou hast made him a little less than the angels; thou hast crowned him with glory and honor; and thou hast set him over the works of thy hands. (Psalm 8:6-7)
37. What are angels?
Angels are created spirits, without bodies, having understanding and free will.
Thousands and thousands ministered to him, and ten thousand times a hundred thousand stood before him. (Daniel 7:10)
38. What gifts did God bestow on the angels when He created them?
When God created the angels He bestowed on them great wisdom, power, and holiness.
O ye angels of the Lord, bless the Lord. (Daniel 3:58)
39. Did all the angels remain faithful to God?
Not all the angels remained faithful to God; some of them sinned. And there was a battle in heaven; Michael and his angels battled with the dragon, and the dragon fought and his angels. And they did not prevail, neither was their place found any more in heaven. (Apocalypse 12:7)
40. What happened to the angels who remained faithful to God?
The angels who remained faithful to God entered into the eternal happiness of heaven, and these are called good angels.
See that you do not despise one of these little ones; for I tell you, their angels in heaven always behold the face of my Father in heaven. (Matthew 18:10)
41. What do the good angels do in heaven?
In heaven the good angels see, love, and adore God.
42. How do the good angels help us?
The good angels help us by praying for us, by acting as messengers from God to us, and by serving as our guardian angels.
For to his angels he has given thee in trust, to keep thee in all thy ways. In their hands they shall bear thee up, lest thou dash they foot against a stone. (Psalm 90:11-12)
43. How do our guardian angels help us?
Our guardian angels help us by praying for us, by protecting us from harm, and by inspiring us to do good.
When thou didst pray with thy tears, and didst bury the dead, and didst leave thy dinner, and hide the dead by day in thy house, and bury them by night, I offered thy prayer to the Lord. (Tobias 12:12)
44. What happened to the angels who did not remain faithful to God?
The angels who did not remain faithful to God were cast into hell, and these are called bad angels, or devils.
Depart from me, accursed ones, into the everlasting fire which was prepared for the devil and his angels. (Matthew 25:41)
45. What is the chief way in which the bad angels try to harm us?
The chief way in which the bad angels try to harm us is by tempting us to sin.
Put on the armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. (Ephesians 6:11)
46. Do all temptations come from the bad angels?
Some temptations come from the bad angels; but other temptations come from ourselves and from the persons and things about us.
Do not love the world, or the things that are in the world. (I John 2:15)
47. Can we always resist temptations?
We can always resist temptations, because no temptation can force us into sin, and because God will always help us if we ask Him.
And he has said to me, “My grace is sufficient for thee.” (I Corinthians 12:9)
taken from: http://www.catholicity.com/baltimore-catechism/lesson05.html
THE HOLY ANGELS (25.1 KiB)
They are some of your best friends.