Many Christians may intuitively think “angels” are winged beings who watch over us and fly around with halos. This is partly true -- angels certainly can and some do intercede for us. But they’re by nature incorporeal and spiritual beings created by God.
The Archangels serve an important role in Christianity, and their intercession can strengthen our own faith in a number of ways.
The Role of the Archangels
The Church, and many early Church Fathers, wrote about the importance of angels. Saint Jerome wrote that every soul was given a guardian angel at the moment it was created. Even the Catechism of the Catholic Church states that, “The existence of spiritual, non-corporeal beings that Sacred Scripture usually calls ‘angels’ is a truth of faith” (CCC 328). How comforting it is to think we have a guardian angel watching over us at all times!
If you need a reminder of your guardian angel’s presence or want to remind a loved one of this comforting truth, check out our Guardian Angel Charm Keychain.
But Archangels are special. Archangels, specifically, are angels who serve as messengers of God. Their existence is mentioned several times in both the Old and New Testament, and we know of three by name: Gabriel, Raphael, and Michael.
Each plays an important role in Scripture and are powerful intercessors when we ask them to pray for our intentions.
If you’ve read the Gospel of Luke, you’ve seen Gabriel’s appearance in Scripture. He is the angel who appears to Mary saying, “Hail favored one! The Lord is with you!” (Luke 1:27-28).
Gabriel is the one who announced to Mary that she would bear a son and name him Jesus. In Scripture, Gabriel is a herald, as he also appears in the book of Daniel, telling Daniel of God’s plans for him.
The name “Raphael” means “God is my health”. The Archangel Raphael appears in the Book of Tobit. He plays an important role in this book, instructing Tobiah in how to heal his father, and guiding and protecting Tobiah and Sarah.
St. Michael the Archangel is perhaps the most well known, at least among Catholics. His name means “one who is like God” and in both the book of Revelation and in tradition, he has the important role of fighting Satan. Pope John Paull II said, “The battle against the devil is the principal task of Saint Michael the Archangel,” and Revelation itself reads,
“...Then war broke out in heaven; Michael and his angels battled against the dragon. Although the dragon and his angels fought back, they were overpowered and lost their place in heaven….” (Revelation 12:7).
Articles of faith remind us of the spiritual truths they represent. Find our St. Michael the Archangel Medal here.
Ways to Call OnTheir Intercession
One popular way to call on St. Michael’s intercession is the St. Michael Prayer. This prayer originated in 1886 during the time of Pope Leo XIII’s pontificate. He composed this prayer after seeing a vision of how Satan would try to attack and destroy the Church.
It was added as a prayer to be said at the end of every Low Mass -- and it is still said at the end of Mass in many parishes today.
Here’s the prayer:
St. Michael the Archangel, defend us in battle. Be our protection against the wickedness and snares of the devil. May God rebuke him, we humbly pray; and do thou, O Prince of the Heavenly Host, by the power of God, cast into hell Satan and all evil spirits who prowl about the world seeking the ruin of souls. Amen.
This is a powerful prayer to pray when you’re feeling overwhelmed by all the scary things happening in the world, or when you just need a little reminder that God is in control.
St. Michael the Archangel, pray for us!