Homily for Memorial of the Holy Guardian Angels

Homily for Memorial of the Holy Guardian Angels

Theme: Significance of guardian angel

By: Fr. Mike Lagrimas
St. Michael the Archangel Parish
Diocese of Novaliches

Homily for Saturday October 2 2021

Homily for Memorial of the Holy Guardian Angels

Theme: Significance of guardian angel

By: Fr. Mike Lagrimas
St. Michael the Archangel Parish
Diocese of Novaliches

 

Homily for Saturday October 2 2021

Mt 18:1-5,10

At that time 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.

In the Book of Exodus, Yahweh promises protection for His people as they journey through the desert towards the Promised Land: “See, I am sending an angel before you, to guard you on the way and bring you to the place I have prepared.” But He warns them: “Be attentive to him and obey him. Do not rebel against him, for he will not forgive your sin. My authority is within him.” But if they follow the angel in everything, Yahweh vows, “I will be an enemy to your enemies and a foe to your foes” (Ex 23:20-22).

The journey of the People of God in the desert is symbolic of our life in this world. It is a long journey to our eternal home in heaven. And it is not without difficulties and dangers. Just as a good father will never send his child alone on the road that is dangerous, so also our heavenly Father makes sure we are not alone in this journey that is so full of snares and perils from the devil. Thus, He sends a guardian angel to each one. St Jerome said, “How great the dignity of the soul, since each one has from birth an angel commissioned to guard it.”

Today we honor our Guardian Angels. This feast was originally celebrated with St. Michael the Archangel on September 29, but an independent feast, first found in Portugal in 1513, was later extended to the whole Church by Pope Clement X in 1670 and assigned October 2 as the feast day.

According to the belief of many Catholics (and some pagans and Jews before the time of Christ), guardian angels are spiritual beings who protect individual persons from spiritual and physical harm. The belief has some basis in the New Testament (ex. Mt 18:10; Acts 12:15).

The Catechism of the Catholic Church affirms their existence and traditional function: “From its beginning until death, human life is surrounded by their watchful care and intercession. ‘Beside each believer stands an angel as protector and shepherd leading him to life’ (St. Basil). Already here on earth the Christian life shares by faith in the blessed company of angels and men united in God” (CCC, 336).

St. Padre Pio de Pietrelcina exhorts us about the great spiritual benefits we get from our guardian angels. In a letter, he wrote:

“May your good angel be your breastplate to ward off the blows that the enemies of our salvation aim at you. How consoling it is to know one is always under the protection of a heavenly spirit who never abandons us, not even (what an admirable thing!) when we are actually offending God! How delightful is this great truth to the one who believes! Let me tell you that he is still powerful. His love has not lessened and he can never fail to defend you. Was he not, perhaps, one of the multitude who joined St. Michael up there in the heavens to defend God’s honor against Satan and all the other rebellious angels, to vanquish them in the end and drive them down to hell?

“This good angel is praying for you and offers to God all your good works, your holy and worthy desires. When it seems to you that you are alone and abandoned, don’t complain that you are without a friend to whom you can open your heart and confide your woes. For goodness sake, don’t forget this invisible companion who is always there to listen to you, always ready to console you….

“Call to mind his presence very often. Thank him and pray to him. He is so considerate and sensitive. Respect him. You must always be afraid to offend the purity of his gaze. Frequently invoke this kindhearted angel. At the hour of death, you will behold this good angel who accompanied you during life and was so generous in his motherly care of you! Often repeat the beautiful prayer” “Angel of God, my guardian dear, to whom God’s love commits me here, ever this day be at my side to light and guard, to rule and guide. Amen!”

Fr. Mike Lagrimas
St. Michael the Archangel Parish
Diocese of Novaliches

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