Monday, 29 September 2008

Feast of Saints Michael, Gabriel, and Raphael (a.k.a. Michaelmas)

Did you know that angels (pure, created spiritual non-corporeal beings) also get to become saints? Or that there is a day in the RC calendar celebrating them? Here's something on this feast day from Wikipedia and Catholic Culture:

- 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 one of the principal angelic warriors, seen as a protector against the dark of night, and the administrator of cosmic intelligence
- 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 - 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
- because this feast falls near the equinox, it is associated with the beginning of autumn and the shortening of days
- during the Middle Ages, Michaelmas was celebrated as a Holy Day of Obligation, but this tradition was abolished in the 18th century

Bible Readings for Today (29 Sep, Mon - 26th Week)

Daniel 7: 9-10, 13-14
“While I was watching,
thrones were set up,
and the Ancient of Days took his seat.
His attire was white like snow;
the hair of his head was like lamb’s wool.
His throne was ablaze with fire
and its wheels were all aflame.
A river of fire was streaming forth
and proceeding from his presence.
Many thousands were ministering to him;
Many tens of thousands stood ready to serve him.
The court convened
and the books were opened.
As the visions during the night continued, I saw:
“With the clouds of the sky
one like a son of man was approaching.
He went up to the Ancient of Days
and was escorted before him.
To him was given ruling authority, honor, and sovereignty.
All peoples, nations, and language groups were serving him.
His authority is eternal and will not pass away.
His kingdom will not be destroyed.”

Revelation 12: 7-12
War broke out in heaven: Michael and his angels fought against the dragon, and the dragon and his angels fought back. But the dragon was not strong enough to prevail, so there was no longer any place left in heaven for him and his angels. So that huge dragon – the ancient serpent, the one called the devil and Satan, who deceives the whole world – was thrown down to the earth, and his angels along with him. Then I heard a loud voice in heaven saying,
“The salvation and the power
and the kingdom of our God,
and the ruling authority of his Christ, have now come,
because the accuser of our brothers and sisters,
the one who accuses them day and night before our God,
has been thrown down.
But they overcame him
by the blood of the Lamb
and by the word of their testimony,
and they did not love their lives so much that they were afraid to die.
Therefore you heavens rejoice, and all who reside in them!
But woe to the earth and the sea
because the devil has come down to you!
He is filled with terrible anger,
for he knows that he only has a little time!”

John 1: 47-51
Jesus saw Nathanael coming toward him and exclaimed, “Look, a true Israelite in whom there is no deceit!” Nathanael asked him, “How do you know me?” Jesus replied, “Before Philip called you, when you were under the fig tree, I saw you.” Nathanael answered him, “Rabbi, you are the Son of God; you are the king of Israel!” Jesus said to him, “Because I told you that I saw you under the fig tree, do you believe? You will see greater things than these.” He continued, “I tell all of you the solemn truth – you will see heaven opened and the angels of God ascending and descending on the Son of Man.”

Daily Bible Verse

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