The Church teaches that the existence of Angels is a truth of the faith because they are part of the created order of God. Distinctive to this identity is that Angels are pure spirits not bound by time or space. They are spiritual creatures endowed with distinctive gifts and attributes representative of God the Father to provide spiritual care, guidance and protection to those who dwell within His Kingdom, mainly humanity by echoing the voice of God.
Examples of their service to the Kingdom is found in St. Gabriel’s announcement to Mary as the Mother of God. The prophet Daniel receives St. Michael affirming Daniel’s fidelity to the Word of God and that St. Michael would stand by him and protect him. We encounter St. Michael and his angels fighting the Devil and his legions,  Tobit and Sarah receive healing from St. Raphael and the archangel binds the evil demon Asmodeus who had killed Sarah’s previous seven husbands.
We have come to know and understand that Angels are spiritual creatures, have intelligence and will and are personal immortal creatures surpassing in perfection all visible creatures because of the beautiful splendor and glory of their witness to God and His Word. Many reading this article may recall a time as young children when we were introduced to Angels and specifically taught to pray to our Guardian Angels. In a scripted sense, our parents may have taught us to do the following: “you better pray that your guardian angel will protect you.” Usually this form of instruction-parental threat came after we had somehow broken the fourth commandment. Nevertheless, our understanding was that angels especially are Guardian Angels will spiritually protect us from everything.
Christ’s Messengers and Intercessors
The premise and role of Angels are under the direction of Christ Himself as He is the center of the angelic world. The Gospel of St. Matthew reminds us of this when all the angels will come with Christ in his glory. As part of the saving plan of God, the Angels possess a distinct role not only messengers for Christ, but as spiritual guides and guardians of the faithful. We find evidence of the Angels’ direct intercession throughout salvation history in the following passages from Sacred Scripture:
- They announced Salvation - Job 3:8-7
- Closed earthly Paradise - Gen 3:24, 29, 21:17, 22:11
- Stayed Abraham’s Hand - Ex 23:20-23
- Led the people of God – Jdgs. 6:11-24
- The archangel Gabriel announces the birth of Christ - Lk 1:11; 2:14; 26
How do the Archangels guide through spiritual combat?
The mission of St. Michael “Who is Like God” is to protect us from Satan and all evil. The mission of St. Gabriel “God’s strength” is to strengthen our relationship with Christ to withstand the perils and dangers of the world. The mission of St. Raphael “the Divine Healer” is to bring healing of any infirmity both physical and spiritual in nature. Essential to their nature as spirits is their involvement in our life to turn toward Christ and His Church if we choose to listen.
The Catechism beautifully describes the role of the Angels in the following way;
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. Already here on earth the Christian life shares by faith in the blessed company of angels and men united in God.
As we call upon the intercessory prayers of protection and healing from the Archangels on their Feast day, I leave you with a prayer of healing attributed to St. Raphael the Divine Healer:
Glorious Archangel St. Raphael, great prince of the heavenly court, you are illustrious for your gifts of wisdom and grace. You are a guide of those who journey by land or sea or air, consoler of the afflicted, and refuge of sinners. I beg you, assist me in all my needs and in all the sufferings of this life, as once you helped the young Tobias on his travels. Because you are the “medicine of God” I humbly pray you to heal the many infirmities of my soul and the ills that afflict my body. I especially ask of you the favor (here mention your special intention), and the great grace of purity to prepare me to be the temple of the Holy Spirit.
St. Michael, Gabriel and Raphael, Pray for Us!